Like father like son.
Montreal Canadiens forward Max Domi may not be the biggest dog in the yard but the young Canadiens forward truly does embody the tough guy mentality that once made his father, the legendary Tie Domi, one of the most beloved and one of the most hated players during his time in the National Hockey League. Well on Saturday night Max Domi was once again challenging that mean streak that has made Domi a recognizable name around the hockey world when he went after Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Marcus Pettersson.
The Canadiens and Penguins faced off in a very hotly contested game on Saturday night but the incident between Domi and Pettersson took place during the game's opening frame when both sides were tied up at 1 a piece. Domi was attempting to give his Canadiens the lead while the 2 sides were playing at 4 on 4 hockey, but fortunately for the Penguins his scoring chance was cut short by a hip check from the aforementioned Pettersson. The check stopped Domi dead in his tracks and cost him control of the puck, and that was enough to make the Habs forward seemingly incensed as he immediately retaliated with a fury. Perhaps it was the fact that Domi thought Pettersson was targeting his leg or knee here, but the one thing that is certain is that Domi was very unhappy.
Domi not only delivered a rather stiff looking cross check to Pettersson's side, near his hip, but he then went after the Penguins defenseman by dropping his gloves and unloading a barrage of punches on him. It looked to me as though Pettersson was caught entirely by surprise due to the aggression from Domi, and he barely had his gloves off while Domi was already dropping heavy rights on top of him. There is no question who won the exchange here as there was virtually no offense from Pettersson until the fight was effectively already over, but I'm not sure you can really blame Pettersson too much for this one.
Surprisingly the officials here opted not to give Domi an instigator penalty for this fight, although I think you would be hard pressed to find a more clear cut case of a fight being caused almost entirely by one of the 2 people involved. Nonetheless, this goes down as a win for Max Domi.