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Justin Bieber Dreamed of Playing Hockey for the Toronto Maple Leafs

Hockey is already the red-headed step child of the sports world, and something tells me that an endorsement from Justin Bieber isn’t going to help.

The Beebs says that if he wasn’t titillating tweens around the world with his barely-tolerable musical stylings, he’d be…playing pro hockey?

“Singing is my first passion, but if things didn’t work out, I would be trying to play for the Toronto Maple Leafs,” Bieber said confidently. “I’m sure I could teach them a thing or two with my mad skills!”

Despite his pee wee league experience (check out his player card), he obviously didn’t get the memo that flatironing your hair isn’t considered a “mad skill” valued by the NHL. Although, picturing Milan Lucic or Matt Cooke dropping the gloves against Justin Bieber makes us absolutely giddy with bloodlust. Better keep JB away from Sean Avery though…they might trade fashion tips.

Wild Fan James Engquist Hiring a Lawyer, Says He Was Assaulted

The NHL got some publicity on Tuesday night and Wednesday, but not the kind it likes. Canucks center Rick Rypien got into two fights with Wild winger Brad Staubitz, and he went off on a fan after getting sent to the locker room following the second one. Rypien’s been suspended by the league indefinitely pending a review. The fan has not wasted any time taking action either.

The fan in question is 28-year-old James Engquist, who told the Star Tribune he is seeking legal representation as recourse. “This is a crazy incident. I’ve seen a lot of hockey in my day, and I’ve never seen someone actually come into the stands and assault a fan.” Engquist added that he is “definitely seeking legal representation. … I was assaulted, that’s just the bottom line.”

Engquist also complained that neither the Wild, NHL, nor Rypien has called to apologize to him. Knowing that he’s planning to sue the crap out of the league and one of its teams, I’m not surprised they’re not eager to reach out to him. Bottom line: this is all on the Rypien for losing his composure. Enduring heckles from fans is part of the job, however much it sucks. Engquist’s front-row seats helps pay a portion of his salary and he should be grateful for that fact. Rypien completely overreacted and will see a hefty suspension. Engquist meanwhile is going to make a lawyer very rich.

Canucks’ Rick Rypien Attacks a Minnesota Wild Fan (Video)

For years, I’ve been trying to convince my friends that the movie Slap Shot is not that far-fetched.  Goons like that exist in real life, don’t they?  Players go after fans, right?  I’ll admit it’s pretty rare, but clearly it happens from time to time.  After he was given a double minor for roughing and a 10-minute game misconduct during Tuesday night’s game against the Minnesota Wild, Vancouver’s Rick Rypien proceeded to the dressing room.  Along the way, a fan was clapping and Rypien didn’t appreciate it, so he decided to shove the fan.  Check out the video of Rick Rypien trying to fight a fan:

Guy’s clearly a goon in every sense of the word.  First, he shoves the ref.  Then he tries to get into it with a fan because the fan’s clapping at him.  It was obviously a heckler’s clap, but that stuff happens all the time.  I’m sure Rypien will come up with some sort of story about how the fan insulted his wife or something when he has a hearing with the NHL, but it’d be a shocker if he wasn’t suspended.

Video Credit: YouTube user mokyboy11

Shane Doan ‘Shocked’ by Suspension for Hit on Dan Sexton

Coyotes winger Shane Doan was the third player to be suspended because of the NHL’s new policy against blindside hits to the head enacted in March. While I’m all for protecting players from blindside hits on the ice, there is a big difference between what Shane Doan did to Ducks winger Dan Sexton and the dirty hit Matt Cooke delivered to Marc Savard that caused the rule.

Doan didn’t seem to be going for Sexton’s head with his hit while Cooke’s was nothing but a cheap shot. Regardless, the NHL is cracking down on anything deemed a dangerous blindside hit to the head. I think the area they need to distinguish between is intent. Was it Doan’s intention to level Sexton, or just to hit him in the middle of the ice? I didn’t think there was any malicious intent by Doan with his hit, but the NHL still docked him three games. Here’s a video of Shane Doan’s hit on Dan Sexton in case you missed it, plus comments from Doan below:

Doan talked about the suspension on Tuesday saying, “I disagree with it. I was pretty shocked that I got suspended, let alone for three games. Everything in the rules says the onus is on the hitter. I deliberately didn’t hit him in the head.” In the rest of the audio provided by FOX Sports Arizona, you can also hear Doan call out Ducks analyst Brian Hayward for exaggerating in his reaction on TV. Doan says Hayward should understand the hit as a former player, and I agree with Doan’s main point: intent is the critical factor the NHL must examine when doling out punishments.

Dustin Penner Banks a Goal Off Ian White’s Face (Video)

This goal actually happened on Saturday, but I’m only getting to it now because I’m probably the only person in America who missed the Oilers-Flames game that day. Luckily for us, the internet exists to ensure nobody misses the awesome goal that happened in the game. Early in the second period with the game tied at 1, Dustin Penner took a centering pass and flipped it off Flames defenseman Ian White’s face. The puck banked off his face and into the net, giving the Oilers the lead. If you haven’t seen it yet, you must check it out:

White needed six stitches to close the cut but he returned to the game. With no points on the season, I’m just sad the scorekeepers didn’t credit him with an assist on the play.

George Parros Flicks Barret Jackman Like a 5-Year-Old (Video)

Now this is how you try to get a fight started…in the 3rd grade.  We’ve featured our fair share of sports fights here at LBS but I don’t think we’ve ever brought you a video of a grown man flicking another grown man like a small child.  Well, there’s a first time for everything.  Check out this video of George Parros flicking Barret Jackman:

Parros is lucky his mother — I mean the referee — didn’t see him doing that.

Video Credit: YouTube user DejaCoup

Anze Kopitar Takes High Stick to the Face, Returns to Score Winning Goal

So I already told you about Jonathan Quick’s awesome retro look in the Kings’ opener on Saturday night in Vancouver. He was sporting old-school pads and a Rogie Vachon-style mask and looked sweet in their win. What I left out of that post was how Kings star Anze Kopitar was playing despite having a jagged looking cut and major stitches on his face. Check out this gnarly thing:

Kopitar looked like a relative of The Joker with the cut on his face, yet he managed to score the winning goal in the shootout to beat the Canucks. What I didn’t realize is that Kopitar incurred the cut through a high stick earlier in the game that knocked his teeth out. In this video from SI Hot Clicks, you can see the trainer trying to find Kopitar’s teeth on the ice after the high stick!

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