Late in the third period of the Montreal Canadiens' 4-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets Thursday, Evander Kane absolutely lost it. After taking a forearm to the face from Canadiens' defenceman Alexei Emelin, Kane decided to punch Emelin in the head several times.
He didn't face much resistance from Emelin. Really, the only thing standing in Kane's way was Emelin's helmet. So Kane, who was in full-on beast mode by this time, ripped the helmet right off of Emelin's head. And then threw it at him.
Now, it's hard to believe that Kane was actually intending to hit Emelin with the helmet. It looked like he was simply trying to throw it away and that's the direction it went. But either way, it's a good thing Emelin ducked, because he nearly got his skull cracked open by the very thing he wears to prevent him from getting his skull cracked open.
But, because he didn't, we can celebrate this moment as little more than just another strange instance where a hockey player threw something unexpectedly. With the helmet toss, Kane joined an elite group of players -- the weird dudes who throw things in a game that calls for no throwing whatsoever.
Let's take a quick look at some of hockey's great player tosses.
Kevin Bieksa throws a glove
It's not often that players actually throw stuff at their opponents on purpose, but it does happen. Last year, Kevin Bieksa of the Vancouver Canucks attempted to break up a minor disagreement between teammate Dan Hamhuis and Minnesota Wild forward Cal Clutterbuck from afar, by throwing his glove when a linesman attempted to hold him back.
It was a crap throw. It hit Hamhuis in the shoulder. Also, Bieksa got a penalty.
Scott Hartnell throws a glove
Speaking of inexplicably throwing one's glove at an opponent, Scott Hartnell once threw his mitt in an attempt to disrupt Ryan Malone on a breakaway.
Why. Just... why.
It was a senseless thing to do at pretty much any moment, but with less than a minute to go in a tie game, it made even less sense. Malone didn't score on the initial attempt, but the glove toss gave him a do-over in the form of a penalty shot. Thankfully for Hartnell, Martin Biron stopped that as well.
Dominik Hasek throws a blocker
Back in 1998, Dominik Hasek got run over by Petr Bondra. He responded by throwing his blocker. Always so unorthodox, that Hasek.
Adam Burish throws a glove
Far more effective than throwing your glove at your opponent, however, is throwing your opponent's glove into the stands. Adam Burish once did that to Tanner Glass, happening upon Glass's glove on his way to the penalty box and tossing it nonchalantly over the boards. Glass went nuts.
I can only imagine Burish's defence. "Honest, ref, I meant to throw it over to Glass, not over the glass. I just got confused."
As Burish demonstrated above, giving your enemy's equipment to the fans is an excellent way to get under his skin. It's a tale as old as time. Why, back in 1971, Vic Hadfield ripped off Bernie Parent's mask and threw that into the stands.
Playing the rest of the game without a mask was an option, because it was 1971 and people were still insane back then, but Parent opted not to and Jacques Plante replaced him.
Johan Franzen throws a mouthguard
But let's say you want you keep things in-house. For an even subtler approach to trolling, why not take your opponent's mouthguard out of his mouth and throw it on the ground like Johan Franzen? It's easy to do when your opponent is Patrick Kane, one of the league's most notorious mouthpiece-chewers, who almost always has the thing dangling out of his mouth.
Ilya Bryzgalov throws a stick
Or maybe you just want to throw your own equipment. Ilya Bryzgalov will do that. Just last week, he threw a water bottle.
Here's Bryzgalov flipping out after a goal and throwing his stick wildly into the corner. It nearly takes an official's head off. Luckily, Bryzgalov whiffs, just like he did on the shot that caused him to throw the stick in the first place. Circle of life.
This young man wasn't quite so lucky.
Neither was the official who took a hockey stick to the solar plexus after the 17-year-old Lithuanian threw his stick at the final horn of his club's 3-2 loss to Great Britain.
Brandon Dubinsky throws a water cooler
That's why, if you're going to rage toss, you want to wait until you're all alone in the tunnel. Then, safely alone, you throw the closest thing. In Brandon Dubinsky's case, it's the Gatorade cooler. Ker-smash!
But even then, you need to be careful.
Always check for kids. Always. You never know where they might be. These kids are lucky they didn't get beaned by Hutchinson's chair throw.
Tuukka Rask throws a milk crate
Speaking of losing one's mind in the tunnel, after a shootout really didn't go his way, Tuukka Rask, then with the Province Bruins, throws a milk crate onto the ice.
Hey man, milk crates aren't to be thrown. They're to be used for storing records. Everyone knows that.
Marc Bergevin throws a puck (into his own net)
And finally, because it's hilarious and also because I still believe it's the greatest own-goal of all time, here's Marc Bergevin throwing a puck into the net he's supposed to be defending.
Hell of a sidearm.