Mitchell's first NHL fight wins him some kudos
LOS ANGELES — Torrey Mitchell's first NHL fight came in his 106th NHL game, and Tuesday he acknowledged his bout against Calgary forward Rene Bourque probably was a little out of character.
"I'm not looking for fights," he said before going out to face the Los Angeles Kings, "but I feel if I get cheap-shotted, I can take care of myself."
The cheap-shot reference was to the elbow that Bourque threw at Mitchell on Monday night that triggered their go-round. Both Mitchell's coach and his teammate with the most career fights agreed that Mitchell did fine with the gloves off.
"Something led to it, so good for Torrey," Todd McLellan said. "He stood his ground, and it's nice to see."
Left wing Jody Shelley said it was fun to watch Mitchell and Bourque.
"I think he surprised all of us, and I think he surprised himself. It was good to see," said Shelley, who has been in 149 regular season fights himself, according to hockeyfights.com.
That Web site provides videos and lets people vote on the outcome of every fight. More than 50 percent declared Mitchell's a draw, but of the rest, nearly four out of five had Mitchell as the winner.
"That's a victory to me," he said, smiling.
Mitchell did have to put up with a little grief from a couple of longtime friends who sent him text messages "making fun of me" after the fight.
All players are very aware that when a game is as one-sided as the 9-1 Sharks' victory over Calgary, things can get a little edgy.
"We've been on the receiving end of losing games like that before," Mitchell said. "Your fuse gets very short."
Over those 27 games, Thornton has seven goals and 38 points, Heatley has 15 goals and 32 points, and Marleau has 19 goals and 27 points.
The news wasn't all good for the Worcester delegation, though, as Couture's goal came against teammate Alex Stalock, who was in nets for PlanetUSA at the time and gave up three more goals as well.
Couture also had an assist in the game and scored in the shootout. Worcester defenseman Danny Groulx registered an assist, too, for the Canadian team.
— DAVID POLLAK