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Monday, April 4, 2016

Biggest Pens Villain Semifinals

The voting for the biggest Pens villain is starting to reach a conclusion. A winner has emerged from each of the four brackets, and now the bracket winners will face off against each other until only one remains standing. The remaining four include two former Flyers now members of the Columbus and Boston organizations, a current Blue Jackets teammate, and an obnoxious NBC media personality. Two of the contenders won the bracket named after them, while the other two have fought their way in the hard way. After trimming the field to two, next week will name the Biggest Pens Villian.

Scott Hartnell vs Brandon Dubinsky

Scott Hartnell (69%) over Marc Staal (31%)
Scott Hartnell (64%) over Gary Bettman (36%)
Scott Hartnell (95%) over Tim Peel (5%)
Scott Hartnell (91%) over Rick Tocchet (9%)

Brandon Dubinsky (72%) over Pierre McGuire (28%)
Brandon Dubinsky (78%) over Claude Giroux (22%)
Brandon Dubinsky (92%) over Colin Campbell (8%)
Brandon Dubinsky - Bye

Two current Columbus Blue Jacket teammates meet in the semifinals as Scott Hartnell will go up against Brandon Dubinsky. It's not surprising to see Dubinsky make it this far, as he's notorious for his borderline and dirty play, including earlier in the year when he was suspended a game for cross checking Sidney Crosby in the neck then once again while he laid prone on the ice, but it is a bit of a surprise to see him face-off against his now teammate. Scott Hartnell had been an annoying pest for years with the Philadelphia Flyers, managing to get under opponents' skin while also being an effective player, but it appears no love has been loss since Philly traded him away.

Mike Milbury vs Zac Rinaldo

Mike Milbury (79%) over Alexander Ovechkin (21%)
Mike Milbury (66%) over John Tortorella (34%)
Mike Milbury (91%) over David Volek (9%)
Mike Milbury - Bye

Zac Rinaldo (59%) over Brad Marchand (41%)
Zac Rinaldo (82%) over David Morehouse (18%)
Zac Rinaldo (73%) over Mike Johnston (27%)
Zac Rinaldo (93%) over Petr Svoboda (7%)

NBC keeps the noise pollution to a maximum when they air hockey games, and no one is more guilty of that offense than Mike Milbury. Milbury uses his time during the intermission report to spew an outdated view of the game and a generally unintelligent opinion on whatever the hot take across the league currently is. To put into further context the type of person NBC has working for them, Milbury once went into the stands as a player and beat a spectator with his own shoe, something that might be expected from his opponent in the semifinals. Zac Rinaldo is about as untalented as a player can be at the NHL level, but he makes up for it by being one of the most obnoxious cheap shot artists the league has seen. It's of little surprise that he has spent most of his career with the Flyers. While the other matchup has a distinctly Columbus feel, this one has Boston all over it, as Rinaldo is currently a Bruin while Milbury played and coached for the franchise.

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