Veteran fighters know all the tricks. It’s those guys that don’t scrap often than seem to get tossed from the game on a technicality. New York Rangers forward J.T. Miller once got the boot for fighting with tape on his hand.
On Sunday, Calgary forward Kris Versteeg was tossed from the Flames’ matinee against the New York Rangers for fighting without tying down his jersey.
They call it a fighting strap for a reason.
Normally, players can get away with not having their jersey tied down. Rule 46.13 – commonly referred to as the Rob Ray Rule for the former Sabres fighter who often ended up shirtless during a scrap – only comes into play during a fight.
A player who engages in a fight and whose jersey is not properly “tied-down” (jersey properly fastened to pants), and who loses his jersey (completely off his torso) in that altercation shall receive a game misconduct penalty.
An infrequent fighter, Versteeg likely didn’t give that fight strap a second thought.
Referees Justin St. Pierre and Kelly Sutherland didn’t have to, immediately assessing a game misconduct.
If only Versteeg hadn’t dropped the gloves, or hadn’t let Rangers rookie Pavel Buchnevich do the ol’ pull-the-jersey-up-over-your-head, he might have been able to finish the game.