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Blatant Homerism

Shocking: Former NHL Goon Shane Churla Charged In Road Rage Incident

Jeez, color me amazed. Who would think that a former NHL enforcer/goon who amassed 2033 penalty minutes in 488 NHL games during stints with the Hartford Whalers, Calgary Flames, Dallas Stars, Los Angeles Kings, New York Rangers and most notably (because I’m a homer), the Minnesota North Stars, would be capable of such a alleged violent act such as road rage? Just when you think you got a guy pegged.

But it be true: Churla, currently serving as a pro scout for the Dallas Stars, has been arrested for an alleged road rage incident in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. He has been charged with criminal damage to property and disorderly conduct – both misdemeanors – for the following sequence of goonish events.

Via the Star Tribune:

According to the criminal complaint, a driver, identified in the report as Jason Statz, 26, of Eau Claire, braked to miss an object in the road. Another driver, identified as Churla, tried to pass Statz on the shoulder.

Churla told officers that Statz refused to let him pass, and Statz claimed Churla pulled alongside his vehicle and “threw a drink or something” at it. Both drivers pulled over to the side of the road. Churla, according to the complaint, approached Statz’s BMW, kicked the door and hit it with his fist, causing some damage.

Both drivers then drove away and were stopped a short time later by Eau Claire officers.

Statz told the Star Tribune on Monday that after Churla threw a coffee on his car and sped after him on the shoulder, Statz pulled over to call the police, adding that while he was on the phone, “[Churla] comes over to my car and starts punching my windows bare-knuckled and everything, screaming obscenities and caved in my sun roof.”

What kind of person allegedly beats another person’s car window bare-knuckled? Oh yeah, a former hockey player whose primary purpose for being in the league was not to senselessly beat another person bare-knuckled but to beat another person senselessly bare-knuckled. A subtle difference, to be sure. The “punching a car window” aspect of the story is a significant difference, but that was obvious.

If there is one thing about NHL enforcers that everyone should know it’s that one shouldn’t ruffle¬† their goon feathers. Even in the Land of Civilians. Yet, to be fair to the victim, he had no idea who Churla was until – and here’s the best part – he checked out YouTube and witnessed for himself the brutish nature of Churla’s hockey career. As you should do as well.

As an aside – and with some blatant homerism mixed in – allow me to add that back in the day, Churla was one of my favorite North Stars players. And during the years when the North Stars had both Churla and the equally intimidating Basil McRae on the team, well, that combination made for mighty fearsome tandem who committed glorious acts of goonery featuring healthy displays of heinous ultraviolence. Ah yes, the good old days, before that bastard Norm Green stole the North Stars away from us, that douchenozzle. You know, if I could just add — oops. Blatant homerism is running amok here once again. Apologies.

Former North Star Churla faces road-rage charges [Star Tribune]