Nathan MacKinnon knows a thing or two about becoming an internet meme.
He’s the guy who scores goals so slick they get played on highlight reels across the league. He’s the guy who made a weird video working at Tim Horton’s with fellow Nova Scotian Sidney Crosby, which delighted the internet almost as much as his goals typically do. He’s even the guy who was the subject of a weird piece by The Hockey News’ Ken Campbell this past summer lamenting the fact that he can’t be a true superstar, because he’s too affable and no one hates him.
Wednesday night might be the first time, though, that he’s become a meme for doing the wrong thing.
Eight Colorado goals into the Avalanche’s 9-3 beatdown of the Arizona Coyotes just hours shy of April Fool’s Day, MacKinnon got into it with Arizona’s Conor Garland after he decided Garland was getting a little too tenacious in their battle for the puck.
At first, he and Garland simply battled it out for the puck, with Garland knocking it away from MacKinnon and ultimately sending it loose for Coyotes defender Ilya Lyubushkin to skate away with. But after the puck officially left their collective possession, MacKinnon decided he’d had enough — and grabbed Garland, hauling him up and removing his helmet in the process of heading to the ice himself during their brief ensuing tussle.