The Columbus Blue Jackets and Philadelphia Flyers put on quite a show for their fans on Saturday.
The two teams faced off in an action packed afternoon game that saw 7 goals scored between both teams as the Blue Jackets would eventually triumph over the Flyers by a score of 4 - 3. The game proved to be a tough test for Philadelphia Flyers rookie goaltender Carter Hart who had been on a tear coming into this contest with a .944 save percentage and a 1.50 goals against average over his first two games in the National Hockey League. By contrast on the evening he managed to record just a .789 save percentage, stopping only 15 of the 19 shots he faced and of course allowing those 4 aforementioned goals.
The tone for the game was set early on when the game was still tied at 0 - 0 with just over 7 minutes left to play in the game's opening frame. It was 32 year old veteran center Brandon Dubinsky and 28 year old FLyers defenseman Radko Gudas who got into things right in front of the Philadelphia Flyers bench, although to be fair neither man unloaded a great deal of offense in the fight. It appeared to be a case of two guys who both had each other tangled up pretty good, and the only real punches that connected were some short shots from Gudas at the very end of the exchange when he continued to punch Dubinsky after being pinned against the boards.
The altercation was prompted by a big time open ice hit from Gudas on the Blue Jackets' Markus Hannikainen, and that is what provoked Dubsinky into coming in and challenging Gudas. It was a curious move from Dubinsky who has previously indicated that he no longer wants to fight in the NHL due to risk of head injuries, especially when you consider the fact that Gudas is a pretty tough customer. It is perhaps for that reason that very little offense was thrown by Dubinsky, and perhaps that is why Gudas himself was unable to dish out too much damage.
The hit on Hannikainen was likely the biggest blow on the play.