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A brief history of Jordan Binnington being a giant baby

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Photo credit:© Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports
Lachlan Irvine
12 days ago
We regret to inform you that Jordan Binnington is at it again.
After a Ryan Hartman goal gave the Minnesota Wild a 5-4 lead over the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday night, Binnington took issue with Hartman’s skate clipping him. So the Blues goaltender skated over and punched the Wild forward with his blocker, earning him a match penalty and an automatic NHL suspension.
Marc-Andre Fleury immediately skated toward the Blues’ end to try and fight Binnington, but much to the dismay of hockey fans everywhere, he was held back by the linesmen.

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It’s ironic how Binnington’s story in the NHL began as the goalie who’s never nervous when, in reality, he’s the easiest netminder in hockey to throw off. The 29-year-old has gone from being considered a big piece of the Blues’ future into an overpaid backup with the reputation of a whiny toddler. And we don’t even have time to get into his history of… shall we say, questionable tweets.
Today we’re going through some of Jordan Binnington’s most embarrassing moments in his short NHL career, and there are a lot of them, including a few against the Canucks.
Let’s begin.
2019:  Whose Calder Trophy?
The on-ice trouble started early in the 2019-20 season. Binnington and the Blues were fresh off winning the franchise’s first Stanley Cup that June, while the Canucks had returned to relevance the previous year thanks to a rookie sensation named Elias Pettersson.
But in Binnington’s eyes, a championship doesn’t matter if you don’t get personal accolades along with it; in this case, the Calder Trophy that Pettersson won over him in 2019.
In the first meeting of the year between the Canucks and Blues, after Pettersson deked around the goalie for a game-tying goal, Binnington snuck in a cheap shot to Pettersson’s head that few clocked at the time.

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It wasn’t for another month, after a 2-1 overtime win in Vancouver, that the context of Binnington’s frustration came to light. The St. Louis Dispatch’s Jim Thomas was in the locker room after the game to document it:
Pettersson won the Calder Trophy last season as the NHL rookie of the year. Binnington was runner-up. And as he made clear Tuesday, Binnington felt he deserved the honor.
“There’s a little bit of that bad taste in my mouth about the outcome last year,” Binnington said. “But he’s a talented player, so it’s good going up against some of the best.”
So to be clear: You felt you deserved the Calder last season, right?
“Yeah,” Binnington said, and then abruptly changed the subject. “They’ve got a good young team and some elite talent. He’s one of those guys, so it’s a lot of fun. An entertaining game I think, so I’m happy with the outcome.”
Putting aside the fact that Binnington was 25 years old and in his sixth year of professional hockey by the time Pettersson jumped to North America at 20, the goalie had barely played half a season in the NHL — 32 games to be exact — compared to Pettersson’s 71.
Perhaps he was doing the Michael Jordan “…and I took that personally” type of self-motivation. But it sure did make him an immediate villain in Canucks fans’ eyes.
2020: Canucks chase Binnington
As far as villains go, he ended up being a pretty lousy one for the Canucks.
When the defending champion Blues and Canucks met up in the first round of the 2020 playoff bubble, Vancouver absolutely feasted on Binnington. The goaltender lost all three of his starts in the series and allowed 13 goals on 65 shots in the process.
Given the franchise’s cursed history, Canucks fans have always been careful not to count their chickens before they hatch. But when Craig Berube announced Binnington as his Game 6 starter, fans almost immediately began to call the series for Vancouver.
And they were right. Binnington didn’t even finish the final game, being pulled after allowing four goals in less than 30 minutes, beginning a long pattern of the easily rattled goalie being outplayed by his lower-ranked teammates.
Thanks to the divisional format of the 2020-21 season, the Canucks and Blues had to wait a while to face each other again, and by that point, things had simmered down between the two sides.
But that doesn’t mean Binnington made any efforts to grow up in the interim.
2021: The Fake Punch
The temper tantrum era for Binnington truly began in the 2021 season during a late February game against the San Jose Sharks.
After being hooked from the game, Binnington circled towards the Sharks bench to shove Radim Simek before quickly turning back towards the Blues’ tunnel. He then faked a punch to the head of Erik Karlsson on his way before Sharks goalie Devan Dubnyk came out to try and take Binnington on.

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After taking one good shot to the mask, Binnington had no problem letting the refs get between him and Dubnyk before he took off for the locker room.
This has ended up becoming Binnington’s signature move during a bad game. Trash talk the opponents that have already scored on you multiple times, punch a player who isn’t expecting it, and then cowardly run away as your teammates or the refs are forced to clean up your mess.
2022 Playoffs: The Water Bottle
Binnington and Nazem Kadri had quite a few run-ins with each other when the latter was a member of the Avalanche. But the most infamous came during last year’s playoffs.
Early in a crucial Game 3, Kadri was going to the net to chase a rebound when he collided with Blues defender Calle Rosen and the two crashed into Binnington, injuring the goalie. With Ville Husso forced to take over, the Avalanche went on to win 5-2.
After the game, Kadri was being interviewed by the TNT broadcast panel about the collision when a water bottle was suddenly flung in his direction.

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“Not sure if he just threw a water bottle at me or not…, ” Kadri said, seeming to imply that it had been Binnington.
The goalie confirmed it at a press conference later, referring to it as a “God-given opportunity”.
Throwing a water bottle was not only the dumbest attempt at making a statement a hockey player has ever made, but it also couldn’t have set a worse example for fans. In the days that followed, Kadri was sent several racist slurs and death threats on social media by Blues fans, leading to an investigation by St. Louis police as well as increased security around the team’s hotel.
Let’s be clear, Binnington didn’t directly encourage terrible people to be terrible. But throwing a water bottle at Kadri still sent the absolute wrong message.
But Kadri got the last laugh, scoring a hat trick in Game 4 and leading the Avalanche to a six-game series victory as Binnington watched from the press box.
2022-23: Year of the Tantrum
Today, a Binnington tantrum is practically a monthly occurrence, thanks in large part to how frequently he plays poorly.
In October, Binnington allowed five goals on 18 shots to the Kings and then chirped the Los Angeles bench as Thomas Greiss skated out to replace him.
On December 1, Binnington tried to hit Jordan Staal behind the net, only for the much bigger Hurricanes player to send him flying.

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Two days later in Pittsburgh, Binnington took out his frustration from giving up three goals in the first period by shoving Jason Zucker into the boards with his glove. Almost immediately in the second period, Zucker got payback by scoring and forcing Craig Berube to give Binnington the hook.
Binnington responded by immediately pulling off his mask and barking at the Penguins bench and receiving a ten-minute misconduct for inciting.

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After the game, Berube seemed completely done with his goalie’s antics.
“It’s got to stop. It doesn’t help anything. Just play goal, stop the puck,” the Blues coach said after the game.
Clearly, that hasn’t worked.
What makes all of these incidents extra pathetic is that Binnington is barely qualified to be an NHL goalie at this point. The Blues goaltender has posted an .894 save percentage and is stuck on a monstrous contract that’ll pay him $6 million until 2027.
Over the last few seasons, Binnington has been consistently outplayed by his counterparts like Jake Allen and Ville Husso, but St. Louis has been forced to let those goalies go because Binnington, his contract, and his ego, are practically immovable. It’s not often that an NHL player unites people in their dislike of them as their act even wears thin in their own city, but Binnington is here to fill that role.
In some parallel universe, Jordan Binnington might be a proper heel who understands his job as a villain and plays it well. But as long as he keeps acting like he’s wearing a diaper under his hockey pants, fans will keep grabbing the popcorn and laughing at the meltdowns.

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