Philadelphia Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo dropped Tampa Bay Lightning enforcer B.J. Crombeen with a clean punch less than seven minutes into the first period of the Flyers 2-1 win Tuesday.
Rinaldo landed a big right hand that rocked Crombeen but Rinaldo also landed several more shots as they fell to the ice.
Some feel the punches Rinaldo threw at the end were uncalled for and late but the 22-year-old begged to differ.
“I hit him until he was down,” Rinaldo told reporters after the game. “I’m not going to hit nobody no matter who they are or what they done, I’ll never hit someone when they’re down. I hit him until he was down. I made sure he was down and that was it.
“I kind of felt bad in case I didn’t stop myself, but I’m pretty sure I did.”
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When asked if there’s anything he would have taken back, Rinaldo replied, “No, not at all. I don’t regret nothing, no.
“It’s a fight man it’s hockey. So many things are going through your mind when you’re fighting. You ever been to a fight? It’s crazy you don’t know what you’re thinking.”
Some felt Rinaldo fought Crombeen because of an incident stemming from a game in Tampa Bay last week where Crombeen challenged Claude Giroux to a fight, but Rinaldo said that wasn’t the case.
“I didn’t play in Tampa. I watched from way up in the press box. No one really asked me about it. It was just a hockey fight. (Crombeen) asked me (to fight) actually.
Do you think Rinaldo gave Crombeen a cheap shot at the end of the fight?