Sunday, November 16, 2014
Keith Ballard Goes for Two Hip Checks, Gets Beat Up
Minnesota's Keith Ballard has long been one of the NHL's best practitioners of the hip check (just google it), and on Sunday against the Winnipeg Jets at the Xcel Energy Center, he connected beautifully on Adam Pardy, sending the pinching d-man flying, feet-first into the air. Giddy from his success, Ballard next tried to take down Evander Kane, who was also skating down the wall, but he missed and then got walloped into the boards by Dustin Byfuglien. A good time was had by all, in other words. Not quite sure why connecting on an entirely clean check gets you beat up in today's NHL, but I can also understand why hip checks are taken as an insult. The Wild won, 4-3 in overtime, on Marco Scandella's OT winner.