Friday, October 15, 2010

Orr Will Play Tonight Against Rangers

After the punch that Colton Orr received just a few nights ago there was speculation that he wouldn't play tonight against the Rangers. But, Ron Wilson today told reporters that Orr will be in the Leafs lineup.

Now, that doesn't guarantee that he and Derek Boogaard will drop the gloves, but it certainly makes it much more likely than if Orr wasn't in the lineup (obviously!). Rangers fans (and fight fans in general) have been anxious to see The Boogey Man get in his first fight as a Ranger. It didn't happen in pre-season when Leblond of the Devils did everything he could to avoid Boogaard. It didn't happen again on Monday when the Rangers played on The Island and Gillies and Boogaard played a combined total of under 4 minutes all night. 

It's a well known fact that Boogaard is one of the most feared fighters that has ever stepped onto an NHL rink. Not only is he a good fighter, without any other word to describe it, he's LARGE. Very Large! Boogaard towers over most other players and is almost twice the weight of some guys playing in the NHL (ie. Zuccarello-Aasen).

Colton Orr is no slouch. We in New York had the privilege of watching Orr become one of the best fighters in the NHL. When he was acquired off waivers from Boston not many in New York knew who he was. Well, let's just say that Orr quickly introduced himself. Many, including myself, were furious when Orr was signed by the Leafs via free agency two summers ago.

No matter who you ask, these two guys are considered to be amongst the best in the NHL at their job. I'd venture to guess that no one who ranks fighters has these guys outside of their Top 5. But, they've never fought each other in the NHL. With Orr playing his entire career in the East (Boston, New York, Toronto) and Boogaard spending his entire career before becoming a Ranger in Minnesota, they haven't met very often. The last time they fought they were playing in the WHL.

No one will fault Orr if he doesn't want to go tonight after that punch he was on the receiving end of the other night. But, if I know anything about Colton Orr, it's that the guy is an absolute warrior. He suffered a similar loss to Matt Carker last season and a few nights later came right back at Carkner and delivered his own TKO. I fully expect Orr to come back tonight and be seeking out Boogaard looking to re-establish himself as one of the best in the business after that TKO by relatively unknown Deryk Engelland two nights ago.

The good news for fight fans is that this is the first of three meetings between the Rangers and Leafs in the next twelve days. So, chances are that if they don't go tonight, we will see them dropping the gloves some time before Halloween!
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