Time To Respect The Code, Avery

January 17, 2011, by

One of the bright spots during last night’s 3-2 loss to the Flyers was when Sean Avery won his fight against Matt Carle. It was surprising to see Carle, a non-fighter, take on Avery, but it happened nonetheless. Non-fighters fight, and many are calling Avery’s challenging of Carle to be bush-league. While the fight itself isn’t as bush as everyone makes it out to be, what happened after the fight is blatant disregard for the hockey players’ code (video below).

What gets me is that once his opponent is down, Avery still throws two punches to the prone Carle. That is a blatant disregard for any kind of ethics in a hockey fight. The unspoken code states that once an opponent is down, the fight is over, and punches cease to be thrown. This is now twice where Avery has thrown punches at a prone opponent this season. As much as we love Avery as Ranger fans, that is downright dirty. Someone is eventually going to ring Avery’s bell, and it might be sooner rather than later.


  1. Adrian says:

    Video doesn’t load

  2. Jesse says:

    What about Carcillo picking Gaborik out and beating him up last season, then saying after the game that he was “licking his chops” to get at Gaborik? I know the Rangers are much more respectful of ethics and sportsmanship than the Flyers are, but I don’t mind giving the Flyers a little taste of their own medicine

  3. Joe says:

    I’m impressed Avery didnt hit him more than twice. Cant say most people would have stopped. Im so tired of this “code” nonsense What about carcillo, what about Carkners Judo throw on Boogard?He landed on his head ( watch the film, wasnt the punch) and hes out forever. That in the code? It’s a fight. It’s what makes hockey police its self and makes it very entertaining. Let AVery get his bell rung, that will be entertaining also. Watch Joey Kocur Knock out Jim Kyte, he hits him another time or two after he detroys him. Its entertaining, it pumps you up and makes hockey the great sport it is.

  4. Canyon of Blueshirts says:

    Yeah, Avery broke the code. But he sure as hell isn’t the first player to do it. Just because Carle decides he’s going to get into the fetal position doesn’t mean he should expect Avery to immediately realize this and stop throwing punches. Stay on your feet and that wont happen to you. Quite frankly, those two extra shots were just a courtesy. In the heat of a fight your mind isn’t going to immediately realize ‘hey this guy is turtling i guess its over’.

    • Chris in MA says:

      Really? Because the majority of the real fighters int he league stop throwing punches before the other guy has even hit the ice.

      • Dave says:

        Yup, even the non-fighters stop when players hit the ice (Dubinsky, Ovechkin, Richards, Iginla, etc).

        • Canyon of Blueshirts says:

          i’ve never seen any of those guys fight a guy who turtled mid fight. its not the same thing as falling to the ice.

          • Dave says:

            Doesn’t matter if the guy turtles or he gets knocked out, if he’s on the ice, you stop throwing punches.

            • Michael says:

              exactly like in boxing do not punch the guy on the ground. they quit or lost; either way it’s over

            • Canyon of Blueshirts says:

              whether you should or shouldnt, it happens in that situation pretty often. the only reason it was such a big deal was b/c it was avery.

              • Chris in MA says:

                There are actually very few players who make it common practice… and Avery is one of them.

        • Chris in MA says:

          I think you and are in the minority here, Dave. haha.

          I mean yeah, Philly has a dirty history etc etc. and dont really have a leg to stand on when complaining about dirty plays or commenting on people picking on non-fighters.

          … and Avery isn’t as dirty of a player, in general, as people make him out to be… but that doesn’t excuse his actions.

          • Dave says:

            This isn’t a post about defending what Philly did or does, it’s a post about what Avery did being wrong.

          • Dave says:

            Bah, hit reply too early.

            I think people are missing that point though. I am not defending Philly (ew, really?), I’m just saying that what Avery did was wrong. Each incident people are using to defend Avery is a complete and separate incident from this.

            • Chris in MA says:

              Its all good. I knew what you were getting at.

              People cant seem to treat each thing as separate incident as its own item… but instead treat them as if its a cascading event.

      • john says:

        But the other guy hit the ice on the first punch. I agree it was a dirty move by Avery, but the Flyers could have provided him with something to work with. So much for the Code when the Flyers “real” fighters are too busy going after players on the bench. Meanwhile, Avery and Prust were both ready to go on the ice. Yeah, Avery shouldn’t have done it, but the Flyers could have provided him with a “real” fighter.

        • Dave says:

          The counter argument there is that Avery won’t fight the fighters, but that’s not really something anyone can prove or disprove.

  5. jen9400 says:

    I am so glad to see these comments defending Avery because i am sick of hearing about this so called code which only seems to apply when Avery steps out of line. If the worst offense Avery is making is getting in an extra punch or two on a guy whom he is FIGHTING or using “off color” language then i say the guy is a SAINT compared to all of the unpunished truly dirty and dangerous things going on out there. Avery is not a dirty player when u consider all of the head shots, slew foots, stick fouls, spears to a guys cup…. Avery does NOTHING even CLOSE to that crap. Nothing. What code? The code was lost when the NHL implemented the instigator rule. The true dirty players are completely protected by the league. So Avery punched somebody, big deal. The Flyers wrote the book on dirty play. For generations they have literally terrorized players to the point where players used to say they were sick when they weren’t so they wouldn’t have to play in Philly’s home building because they were afraid of getting hurt! It was called the Philly flu. These guys have made it a practice throughout their black eyed history up until this very day o make sure they have at least one piece of crap who is willing to go out and injure players at will and now the Rangers have a guy who colors outside the lines a little and we’re going to tell him to follow the code? Was Walker following the code during the very same scrum when he was pounding on Newbury – also not a fighter – 4 or 5 times as he had him pinned on the low boards at the Rangers bench? Is that ok because Newbury who returned no punches as he was in a prone position was on his skates? Was it following the code when Briere and Hartnell were delivering sucker punches to Prust from the Flyers bench in the same game? The Flyers are still the same dirty bums they always were and then they have the gall to wine and cry about Avery getting an extra punch or two in during a fight. I don’t feel sorry for them. They made their bed now they have to deal with Avery. The player who is damned if he does and damned when he doesn’t. Most Ranger fans want Avery to be “more involved” to stick up for people, to agitate the opposition to be the Sean Avery we know and love then when he does it they want to criticize how he does it. Well, I was at the game last night and i was one of thousands of voices chanting his name so i can assure those who want to talk about the so called code – not everyone had a problem with it.

    • Dave says:

      This is a very long post, so I’m just going to reply to the first line of “so called code which only seems to apply when Avery steps out of line”

      This is the first time I’ve called out Avery on anything. The sloppy seconds thing was kind of funny, I defended him in that fight against Colin Fraser where people said it was a sucker punch (it wasn’t).

      But as someone who has played the game, there is a code, and that’s a big rule in it. Yes, the Flyers break it all the time (Carcillo/Gaborik comes to mind), but two wrongs don’t make a right. Payback is fine, but be the bigger man and be clean.

      • Dave says:

        Another part of the code is no cup checking. Burrows missed the memo on that one though.

      • Chris in MA says:

        Couldnt agree more, Dave.

      • jen9400 says:

        Well if you read past the first line u will see that i pointed out several “code breaks” in this game and still the only person anyone ever seems to talk about is Avery and i am tired of hearing about it. If fans want Avery to be Avery then you’re going to have to learn to take the good with the bad. He is going to step out of bounds once in a while. That’s just the way it is. Personally, I rather enjoy watching the Flyers hate Avery. Man do they deserve to swallow all of the bad medicine Avery has for them!!!!!

        • Chris in MA says:

          Your point is completely null and void when what is being talked about has nothing to do with his role as an agitator.

          Giving someone an earful, or bumping the goalie, or giving someone a facewash = agitating.

          … throwing 2-3 extra rights after the other guy has hit the ice = goonery

          Agitating != Goonery

          • Chris in MA says:

            Like dave said, below, you ARE dead-on with the instigator rule. It has made the ‘code’ virtually non-existent and has only served to really blur the lines between what is considered dirty and what is just agitation.

        • Dave says:

          To be fair, you’re dead on with the instigator rule, it needs to be gone.

          But I disagree on Newbury, he cross-checked Walker to the back of the head, which prompted the fight there.

          Regarding Avery, he’s not squeaky clean, but he’s not a dirty guy like Cooke/Carcillo. There are many definitions of dirty.

          But back to the point I mentioned below, it’s tough to defend Avery by saying “the Flyers do it too”. That’s the same argument we all got yelled at for when we were 7 “he started it!!”.

  6. Darren C says:

    This is nuts! These are the flyers were talking about. **** a code. I don’t care if avery fought shelley, briere or the guys who sells peanuts. The flyers throw punches from the bench and were supposed to play clean?

    • Dave says:

      Again, separate issues. They are not one in the same.

      • Darren C says:

        But why are they separate? Does physicality not factor into the games outcome? If a team doesn’t get pushed back do they still play the same? We killed girardi for not stepping up to get his hands dirty and then when someone from our team gets us going with a tough guy mentality he’s out of line? Next you’re gonna tell me the rangers shouldn’t have played so hard at the end of the third. Just cause thy score three goals doesn’t mean we have to too.

        • Dave says:

          But now you’re getting off topic. I was saying Avery shouldn’t be hitting people after they fall to the ice during a fight. That has nothing to do with the outcome, it has to do with not being a dirty player.

          As I said above, the Carcillo and Briere/Hartnell incidents are completely unrelated to the Avery incident.

          Next, I’m going to tell you that putting words in my mouth and/or taking things I say out of context is poor form.

  7. Dave says:

    I think everyone is aware of the Carcillo/Gabby fight and the Hartnell/Briere incident last night. Those are completely unrelated to this incident. They are all separate incidents that should have been or should be dealt with.

  8. The Hockey Suit says:

    Agree with you 100% Dave. There is a code and Avery and many others don’t abide by it and the league should step in and do something. Otherwise shit is going to get out of hand at some point and someone is going to get seriously hurt, which no one wants to see.

    Fans want revenge and I understand all that. But if UFC fighters of all people know when someone is down and can turn off that switch, NHL players should too. That is what separates a professional fighter from every other “tough guy.”

  9. Darren C says:

    But that’s not saying why its unrelated. It just isn’t? That doesn’t make sense. Sean avery punching a florida panther is unrelated. You can’t just remove things from the game cause they’re unsavory.

    • Chris in MA says:

      Its unrelated to this game because it is becoming common practice for Avery to do this whole ‘throwing extra punches’ thing…THAT is what the post was about.

      The post was not about the History of the Rangers/Flyers. It was about Avery making it common practice to throw extra punches.

  10. jen9400 says:

    Maybe you guys should talk to Sean about it. Seriously. Ask him about it. He’s an approachable and very honest guy and he’s easy to find. If you tell him you are concerned maybe he’ll take your advice. Seriously. He’ll talk to you.

    • The hockey suit says:

      Jen is right we should talk to Avery about it, anyone want to sign up for blueshirts united so we can lecture him at one of those meet and greets…hey we could also run some trade proposals by glen…tell Hank he’s susceptible over his right shoulder etc etc

  11. Neil says:

    Normally I would agree, but this is finally some retribution for Dan Carcillo on Gaborik last year. At least it’s a step in that direction.

  12. tmd39 says:

    There is a code and Avery didn’t follow it. However, as far as I can see, no one follows the code with respect to the Rangers. How many slew-foots, spears to the groin, enforcers jumping skilled players & punches from the bench do the Rangers have to take before enough is enough? Are those not breaches of the code?

  13. Jason says:

    Just to be clear there should be no disagreement: What Avery did was uncool. If you watch the video Carle didn’t even drop both his gloves for the first 10 seconds or so, Avery was nonetheless more than happy to engage a non fighter so the guy at that point had no choice to attempt to defend himself. Avery I’m sure knew he wasn’t exactly matched up with any of their guys that are known to drop em – thus making hitting the guy after you already got a good shot in on him even more disrespectful and bush league.

    To be clear I don’t have all that much sympathy for the Flyers given the history (Carcillo’s “fight” with Gaborik last year specifically). That being said I’d rather be rooting for the good guys.

    The other issue here is that the Rangers are a team that stands up for each other, they’ve carved out that personality this year. My question is as a teammate how are you supposed to stick up for a guy like Avery that takes cheap shots at guys and generally deserves a commupance? In the Edmonton debacle both Prust and Boyle had seperate fights due to Avery’s “questionable” cheapshot. What if one of those two got hurt fighting/defending their teammate that instigated the whole mess? Maybe there’s a reason he’s gotten less ice time this year?

  14. KC says:

    I love that no one realized the Rangers had seven guys on the ice, Dubi, Avery, Prust, Newbury, Staal Girardi and Biron. One of the forwards came on the ice and directly joined the altercation, which is a big no-no, with suspension and big fines.

  15. Vince says:

    Following hockey since 1963.I know when this so call code started.Maybe when Schultz beat the piss out of Dale Rolfe.

  16. mbeamer says:

    I didn’t see anything wrong with what Avery did. The guy agreed to fight and then chickened out. Avery didn’t hit him hard – so please lets not pretend he was pounding on him when he was down. I’ve seen plenty of fights where if the linemen don’t jump right in the guy gets back up and continues to fight. Want another example – How could anyone forget Semin throwing those sissy hits ON TOP of Stahl.

  17. wjh says:

    daren c. = a gutter mouthed toad…can’t post w/o the “f” word, yeah.
    gabby went to carcillo, bang. avery going after a non-fighter, then newbury cross checking walker, then dubinsky jumping Shelley from behind = real tough guys…seems as tho ny kers are good for that hit in the back stuff..go straight at them

  18. Blueshirts4Life says:

    I agree with this Yeah it was wrong what Avery did but he isn’t the only one to do that. Whether it was momentum carrying him or he was just POed it doesn’t really matter anymore. Its over and No Harm Done. Philly does this on a regular basis and there is not nearly as many problems with it. Shelley has gotten suspended twice this season for cheap head shots and nothing has been said about that. Not one time this year has Aves been suspended let alone misconducted for a cheap shot. He’s gotten misconduct for stupid slashes but that’s Aves for ya. 🙂