Lost at the end of a wild Game 2 and hidden in a commercial break, was a pretty unlikely scrap between the Penguinsā€™ Evgeni Malkin and the Predatorsā€™ P.K. Subban.

This was born of frustration, as Mattias Ekholm jawed at and exchanged shoves with Malkin after a whistle, and then Ekholmā€™s blueline partner Subban wrapped up Malkin from behind. Some talking in the corner, Malkin reached past the linesman with a left jab, and then it was time to ask politely about fighting.

ā€œI like (him), heā€™s a good player,ā€ said Malkin. ā€œHe asked me ā€˜you want to fight?ā€™ I donā€™t care. It was lots of emotion. Next game we forget that. Itā€™s not my game to fight.ā€

But Subban said the chirping with Malkin had been going on all night, and claimed Malkin said something in Russian to him that set him off.

ā€œI play with some Russians, too,ā€ Subban said. ā€œI didnā€™t like what he said, so I said something back to him and we went.ā€

Malkin had only dropped the gloves once this season, according to HockeyFights.com (that dumb beef with Winnipeg that ended Toby Enstromā€™s season), while Subban had only fought twice.


It was not, as Malkin acknowledged, a pretty fight. More of a hug, really.

ā€œItā€™s a bad fight,ā€ Malkin said after the game. ā€œWe hold each other for a minute. I donā€™t want to fight with Subban. He approached me after the whistle, and Iā€™m upset and I come to him and Subban come to me. Itā€™s fine, I forgive him.ā€

They earned matching majors and Malkin was tagged with an additional roughing minor.