Photo: Kyle Mace
The Washington Capitals and Pittsburgh Penguins are currently engaged in a brutal playoff series, which has featured multiple head shots and two suspensions. Meanwhile, in the American Hockey League, the two organizations’ farm teams are playing each other and things have gotten feisty as well.
Monday during Game Four, Hershey Bears and WBS Penguins players almost brawled during warm-ups, trash talking each other at center ice. According to Chocolate Hockey’s Kyle Mace, Penguins’ forward Tom Sestito tripped Liam O’Brien, looking for a fight. After the game, the rivalry spilled onto social media, with O’Brien verbally eviscerating Sestito on Twitter.
— Russ Hryvnak (@RussWBS) May 10, 2016
“To be honest, like I don’t even know what happened,” Sestito said to Russ Hryvnak after the game. “O’Brien’s coming and chirping. I just let him know I was there. The guy’s a coward. He runs a big game when I’m not here. He just doesn’t step up to the bout. I had respect for him. I have zero respect for him [now].”
O’Brien responded to the video on Twitter, calling Sestito “stupid.”
Sestito responded in kind.
And it just got worse from there.
Later, Sestito retweeted this image.
— ego (@EvgeniMaIkinEgo) May 10, 2016
Both of these players have history.
In a mid-March regular season game, O’Brien and Sestito dropped the gloves off an opening face-off. O’Brien got the better of the fight, but slipped when he went for a takedown. Sestito preceded to punch O’Brien while he laid helpless on the ice.
To show his appreciation, O’Brien celebrated as he skated to the penalty box, throwing rock hands into the air.
Photo: Kyle Mace
Earlier in the series, O’Brien was suspended after a late hit in Game One.
Here is that hit by Liam O’Brien pic.twitter.com/haOGi03DSt
— Jason Iacona (@nafsnep) May 5, 2016
In Game Four, Sesito returned from a call-up to Pittsburgh and things came to a head.
Additional reporting by Ian Oland.
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