Every Possible Angle of New Jersey Devils-New York Rangers Line Brawl

The New Jersey Devils came into their game on Wednesday night with a bullseye on Matt Rempe. The Devils started Kurtis MacDermid to get the fight out of the way, but it turns out, there were four other fights happening at the same time.

New York Rangers center Matt Rempe (73)
New York Rangers center Matt Rempe (73) / Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New Jersey Devils and New York Rangers have a lot of hate going into their Wednesday night matchup. The Devils had to have circled this game on the schedule after their last tilt with their Hudson River Rivals. There, Matt Rempe laid a very illegal and dangerous “hit” on Jonas Siegenthaler, forcing him to miss weeks with a concussion. Siegenthaler is back, but the Devils did not want to let that play go without further punishment. The NHL laid a four-game suspension on Rempe, but he refused to fight Kurtis MacDermid during that game. That was not the case on Wednesday night. 

The Devils started MacDermid, usually a player who gets around 10 minutes per game. In turn, the Rangers started Rempe. It was pretty clear what was happening, and a fight ensued.

But as you can see, it was not just Rempe vs. MacDermid. It was also John Marino against K'Andre Miller. It was Kevin Bahl vs. Barclay Goodrow. And it all started with Curtis Lazar taking on former Devils player Jimmy Vesey. That is important for one simple fact: the Devils don't lose Lazar and the Rangers don't lose Vesey for the game (more on that in a moment).

The bird's eye view, thanks to NJ.com reporter Ryan Novozinsky, shows just how chaotic the start of the game was. One fight went right off the bat, but as time went by, more and more fights started.

The line brawl wasn't the only... err... disagreement happening to start this game. Similar to Peter DeBoer and John Tortorella more than 10 years ago, Devils interim head coach Travis Green went "blow for blow" with Rangers head coach Peter Laviolette.

After the fights, the officials took control of the game, sending dozens of players to the showers. They assessed eight total game misconducts, ending the night of everyone involved except for Lazar and Vesey. The NHL rulebook states that is a second pair of players fight after another pair, they will be assessed game misconducts.

"A game misconduct penalty shall be imposed on any player who is assessed a major penalty for fighting after the original altercation has started. Notwithstanding this rule, at the discretion of the Referee, the automatic game misconduct penalty may be waived for a player in the altercation if the opposing player was clearly the instigator of the altercation. "

NHL Rule 46.7

After five minutes, this game had 156 penalty minutes. Now, the Devils need to win this game. They cannot let this turn into a season sweep by their biggest rival one year after sending them home in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.