Ryan Reaves hits his opponent with a massive open-ice hit

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After Wednesday’s win by the Minnesota Wild, Ryan Reaves will be haunting Detroit Red Wings fans. (Reuters)

Ryan Reaves is reminding hockey fans why he remains one of the most respected players in the NHL.

In the first period of Wednesday night’s game against the Detroit Red Wings, Reaves delivered a bone-crushing hit to defenseman Filip Hronek, who was skating the puck out of his own end.

Reaves was not punished for the play. Hronek suffered from bloody legs and was able to stay down for several minutes before he was able to skate off with some help from his teammates.

The Red Wings then announced that the 25-year old would not be returning for the contest.

As expected, online debate was divided over the legality and legality of the hit. Some argued that the head was targeted, while others claimed that the primary point of contact was the head.

Others, however, supported the hit as a clean move and were content with the throwback style.

Reaves continued to play physical in the second frame. He pushed Gustav Lindstrom into the corners and provoked a reaction from Ben Chiarot who was fed up with Reaves’ antics. Chiarot (listed at 6-foot-3, and 6 foot-2, respectively) engaged in a brief fight before they were separated and given five-minute majors.

Reaves flexed a bicep following the fight, bringing the Xcel Energy Center crowd back to their feet.

Reaves was just inches from the final cherry on his big night. He placed a shot just wide enough to make the net, which would have ended the game.

Frederick Gaudreau would make an empty netter for Minnesota’s win of 4-1 just moments later.

Red Wings might have had the NHL on TNT panel to blame in motivating Reaves on Wednesday. Paul Bissonnette (a former NHLer) chirped at the 35-year old during a pregame interview. It caused a hilarious exchange on live TV.

Reaves, who was reportedly requested to move out of New York by an enforcer, was acquired by the Rangers in November 25. Reaves, a 15-year-old veteran, has had three assists and 14 penalties minutes in 21 games in 2022-2223.

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