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Canucks Top Three Fights of 2018/19

As we head towards the offseason in the NHL, our friends over at Hockeyfights.com have taken some time to go through all the Network Sites to rank the top three fights of each according to the fans on HF. The first in this series begins with the CanucksArmy crew.

The Canucks found themselves in the lower half of the fighting majors ranking this season with a total of 13 fights. The most common pugilist for the year was Erik Gudbranson with three tilts under his belt. Antoine Roussel and Darren Archibald each had two of their own. The rivalry list was a tie between San Jose, Anaheim, and Boston. The San Jose and Anaheim makes sense as Pacific division rivals, but the Bruins also having two fights against the Canucks was a bit surprising.

Let’s have a look at the top three fights of the season for the Canucks this year:

NUMBER THREE

B. Horvat (VAN) vs. N. Acciari (BOS)

Bo Horvat knocks down Joakim Nordstrom with a clean hit and Noel Acciari almost immediately springs in to defend his teammate. The fight starts off with Bo getting the best of Accari with some nice spin work before the punches start flying. After that it’s all Horvat landing punches before Acciari finally just goes down.

Decision: Horvat 88.6%

NUMBER TWO

E. Gudbranson (VAN) vs. M. Haley (FLA)

Michael Haley was last year’s HockeyFight champion with a whopping 22 fights, nine more fights than the next highest total (Cody McLeod and Tom Wilson – 13). This season Haley was involved in only five fights, and off the faceoff he and Erik Gudbranson square off and a little sizing up before getting to the fight. A ton of “rabbit punches” by Gudbranson from the collar of Haley were what scored here. Erik did well to keep his larger wingspan to his advantage. A whole lot of missed haymakers and swings later the two go down.

Decision: Gudbranson 67.2%

NUMBER ONE

E. Gudbranson (VAN) vs. T. Hamonic (CAL)

For the top fight of the season, we have to travel back to the very first game of the season against the Flames of Calgary. Travis Hamonic decides to take on the man and Gudbranson ends that pretty quickly with a huge uppercut that put Hamonic out for weeks afterward. Gudbranson is a bad man.

Decision: Gudbranson 96.7%

    • As opposed to fighting as some here are, the risk of serious injury from a pumping fist is nothing when compared to a 200 lb body hurtling through someone’s head. An arm just doesn’t have the weight (not to mention most punches miss or glance off). The injuries from fighting tend to be more focal due to smaller contact area of a fist. Back in the days of the staged fights (good riddance), there was legitimate risk but only because of the ridiculous frequency that the heavyweights would pummel each other.
      Until the NHL gets serious/consistent about protecting its players from high hits/head shots, cracking down on fighting is verging on hypocritical.
      My memory could be playing tricks on me, but I don’t remember there being as many injuries from high hits to the head, in the days where you knew you were accountable and that Probert or Grimson were going to come after you.

      • Hack n smack. The NHL didn’t get very serious on any of the illegal hits to the head / concussions the Canucks players received this year. Baer, Pettersson and Stetcher concussion didn’t even have penalties called against them.

  • There are arguments to be made both for and against allowing fighting in hockey. That being said there is no way punches to the back of the head like the final one in the last fight shown here should be allowed. That kind of punch is really dangerous and wouldn’t be allowed in a boxing or MMA match. If we’re going to say that fighting is a key part of the sport of hockey then fights need to adhere to some sort of sport fighting standard.

    • I see three people (as of now at least) think hockey fights should include blows that are illegal in every reputable combat sport. I’m really curious to hear why.

  • Well thank you. That was nice for a change of pace. I used to get to watch a lot of scuffles in the WHL. Everything seemed to change after the 2004 lockout though. As much as people complain about fighting. It still puts the crowd on their feet.

    • Happy to bring you the content. I have now worked with HockeyFights for two seasons and have watched a real effort from the referees/linesmen to break things up early and often before the fight can happen.

  • The fight I remember was between Cody McLeod and Darren Archibald. It lasted 5 seconds and I thought they should get 10 game suspensions for being pathetic.

  • Also, what do you mean by “rabbit punches” in the second fight? The third fight ended with a rabbit punch but I didn’t see one much a ton of them in the second.

  • I would have bet that there were fewer than 3 fights this year. Fighting will essentially be out of the game in 5 years. I’ve been to lots of WHL games in the past 3 years, and there are almost no fights in that league anymore where previously there was a fight every game. Once this new generation of players fills the NHL, fighting will be reduced further than it already is.

    • Yeah the WHL is a bunch of pussies now. It’s part of the reason we suck at international hockey now. We’re soft as 4 ply. WHL is boring compared to 10 years ago.

  • Also, a couple fights a year look good on Horvat. As the emotional leader and future team captain, a well timed fight in a game with high emotions can be just the thing to rally your team (and fans) behind you.

    • True Jerome used fisticuffs to rally the Flames more than a few times in his illustrious time spent with the team. Of all opposing players I always wished Iginla played for the Canucks