Pittsburgh Penguins: Fehr Fights Dubinsky And Wilson Drops Gloves With Jenner


The Pittsburgh Penguins are known as a finesse team and Monday night they scored five goals like the vintage Penguins of old. There were also two fights in the game, a rarity for the team and part of the spark that incited the goal scoring outburst.

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Eric Fehr would have been the last person I expected to drop the gloves for the Pittsburgh Penguins. You see, it’s not in his nature.

Oh, Fehr is a fighter indeed. Just not the kind who fights with his fists.

A long time ago in a District of Columbia far, far away, Fehr was drafted 18th overall by the Washington Capitals and immediately proceeded to show a deft scoring touch.

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He hit the 50 goal mark two seasons in a row with the Brandon Wheat Kings of the WHL, and then potted 20+ in two straight years (once in just half a season) for the Hershey Bears of the AHL.

Then a curious thing happened. Eric Fehr suddenly became brittle. First there was the herniated disk in his back that caused him to miss a full year of hockey. Then shoulder injury after shoulder injury.

One might say he was Beau Bennett before Beau was even a blip on the Pittsburgh Penguins radar.

He battled through a myriad of injuries and worked on his game, honing the “finer details”. By the time the 2012-13 lockout had ended, Fehr was fully transformed from injury plagued goal-scorer into a useful utility piece. He gave up his top line aspirations and embraced the role of bottom six forward. And he did it well.

Flash forward to now and he’s playing for a Penguins team that is not quite performing up to par. Last night they were facing the Columbus Blue Jackets and Brandon Dubinsky. A team that bullied them in their last matchup, and a player that took a cheap shot at the Pens’ captain.

It took a while for the Pittsburgh Penguins’ emotions to boil over, but when they did it was Eric Fehr taking the call.

He didn’t win. Hell, he didn’t even look good in the act. You could tell it was his first time at the dance.

But he fought. And a little over two minutes later Evgeni Malkin unleashed on Columbus and the Pens’ tide began to rise.

Despite the goals, the Pittsburgh Penguins weren’t done fighting back with their fists as well.

After a dubious knee-to-knee hit by Boone Jenner took out Malkin, Scott Wilson answered the bell for the superstar in a way that was conspicuously absent the last time a Columbus player took a cheap shot at a Penguins star.

If possible, Scott Wilson lost his fight against Jenner worse than Fehr lost his. The outcome didn’t matter, however.

The message was received loud and clear on the Pittsburgh Penguins bench and the team rattled off two more unanswered goals to total four in all in the 2nd period.

Next: Beau Bennett's Injuries Hurt Himself, Team

There’s not really a player on the current Penguins roster who can fill the role of enforcer. It’s not the way management built the team, and the league is quickly dove-tailing from the enforcer only profession. Now if you’re a guy who drops the mitts, you also have to have some skill and provide upside in other areas of the game.

The Pens don’t have that guy. They may not for some time.

But if they continue to have courage and a willingness to do the hard things for each other in between all the highlight reel passing and goal scoring, it will go a long way towards earning respect around the league and in the locker room.