A bench-clearing brawl, sometimes known as a basebrawl or a rhubarb, is a form of ritualistic fighting that occurs in sports, most notably baseball and ice hockey, in which every player on both teams leaves their dugouts, bullpens or benches, and charges the playing area in order to fight one another or try to break up a fight.
In baseball, brawls are usually the result of escalating infractions, often stemming from a player being hit by a pitch, or an altercation between a baserunner and infielder stemming from excessive contact in an attempted tag out (such as a runner crashing into the catcher at home plate in an attempt to dislodge the ball, which is an offensive interference violation that may result in ejection). They are also known to occur when a batter charges the mound. However, few bench-clearing brawls result in serious injury, as in most cases, no punches are thrown, and the action is limited to pushing and shoving.
Unlike most other team sports, in which teams usually have an equivalent number of players on the field at any given time, in baseball the hitting team is at a numerical disadvantage, with a maximum of five players (batter, up to three runners, and on-deck batter) and two base coaches on the field at any time, compared to the fielding team's nine players. For this reason, leaving the dugout to join a fight is generally considered acceptable in that it results in numerical equivalence on the field, a fairer fight, and a generally neutral outcome, as in most cases, managers and/or umpires will intervene to restore order and resume the game. In at least one case (the infamous Ten Cent Beer Night promotion), one team (the Cleveland Indians, who were the home team) left its dugout to defend the other (the Texas Rangers, the visiting team) from its own fans (who had stormed the field).
Depending on the severity of the unsportsmanlike conduct, an umpire may or may not eject a brawl's participants. Since a bench-clearing brawl by definition involves everyone on both teams, it is exceedingly unlikely that all participants will be ejected, but the player or players responsible for the precipitating event are often ejected. Fines and suspensions generally result and are issued at a later date.
Fighting in ice hockey by enforcers is an established, if unofficial, part of the sport (especially in North America, where the penalty rules are more permissive); the general procedure in a one-on-one fight is to let it pan out and then send both players to the penalty box with five-minute major penalties. Escalations beyond isolated fights, such as line brawls between groups of players on the ice, are prohibited, meaning bench-clearing brawls will result in serious consequences. General brawls can result in players being assessed game misconduct penalties and ejected from the game. This is especially the case if a player leaves the bench or penalty box to join a fight.
As in baseball, hockey brawls usually result from escalating infractions; in this case, dangerous hits, excessive post-whistle roughness, taking shots after the whistle, attacking the goaltender, and hatred from competition in a game with a significant amount of inter-player violence, all contribute to bench-clearing brawls.
In the National Hockey League the penalties include, in addition to in-game penalties, an automatic 10-game suspension and a fine of $10,000 for the first player to leave his bench or the penalty box to participate in a brawl; for the second player to leave his bench or the penalty box, the penalties include, in addition to in-game penalties, an automatic five-game suspension and a fine of $5,000.
The International Ice Hockey Federation rules prescribe a double minor penalty plus a game misconduct penalty for the first player to leave the bench during an altercation and a misconduct penalty for other such players; a player who leaves the penalty box during an altercation is assessed a minor penalty plus a game misconduct penalty. In addition to these penalties for leaving the bench, all players engaging in a fight may be penalized.
One of the more notable incidents was the Punch-up in Piestany, a game between Canada and the Soviet Union during the 1987 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships. The game was rougher and more dangerous than is generally accepted, and with 6:07 left in the second period, a wild fight broke out between Pavel Kostichkin and Theoren Fleury, causing both teams to leave the benches for 20 minutes. The officials ordered that the arena lights be turned out, but to no avail, and the IIHF eventually declared the game void. Both teams were ejected from the tournament, costing Canada a potential gold medal, and the Canadian team, disgusted at what they perceived to be a conspiracy against them, chose to leave rather than stay for the end-of-tournament festivities, from which the Soviet team were banned.
A notable KHL bench-clearing brawl saw all the players of Avangard Omsk and Vityaz Chekhov, except for the goaltenders, fighting at 3 minutes and 34 seconds. The referees penalized all the players who were involved in the brawl, and called the game due to lack of players; the teams were fined 5.7 million rubles and had the game counted as a double loss.
Bench-clearing brawls have also been known to occur in other sports, and officials in those sports have been cracking down on such brawls; in 1995, the National Basketball Association changed the penalty for leaving the bench to participate in a brawl from a $500 fine to an automatic one-game suspension.
In 2010, the Northern Territory Football League in Australia ruled that any player found to have left the interchange bench to participate in a melee would be ejected from that match; they would also have their melee fine increased by 25% and receive an automatic one-game suspension.
Bench-clearing brawls do not occur very often in gridiron football. All levels of the game penalize any "substitute who leaves the team box during a fight" (as it is worded in the high school rule books) with automatic ejection and possible further sanctions depending on the league, and the amount of equipment a football player wears increases the risk for injury in a brawl greatly. In addition, on-field umpires and referees move in immediately to break up fights, and any contact by a team member against an official will draw the immediate penalty of ejection from the game, with further sanctions by league officials virtually certain, along with on-field penalties that move the ball closer or farther from the goal line depending on the team sanctioned, hurting the team's winning chances far more than in other sports. One notable brawl at the college level was between Florida International University and the University of Miami, where tough talk between two crosstown rivals escalated into a brawl with severe consequences for FIU.
At least two bench-clearing brawls have taken place in the Lingerie Football League, since renamed the Legends Football League. The first came in 2009 between the Miami Caliente and the New York Majesty; that brawl eventually led to the Majesty suspending operations. Another occurred during the December 9, 2011 LFL game between the Toronto Triumph and the Philadelphia Passion. It was unclear what punishment either team would face as Toronto was already using replacement players due to a mass walkout of the original team earlier in the year.
Bench-clearing brawls are prohibited in scholastic competition with the National Federation of State High School Associations specifying the penalty for leaving the bench area to participate in a fight in any sanctioned sport as an automatic ejection and, if actively involved in a fight, an automatic suspension. In addition, school administrators may implement more severe penalties such as disqualification from activities, academic suspension or expulsion. In more severe instances, entire schools can face sanctions from their state's athletic association, ranging from letters of reprimand, forfeiture of contests, withholding of travel expenses and extended suspensions of players and coaches to, in the most severe cases, cancellation of a team's entire season or suspension of a school's entire athletic program.
The 2014 Miami Beach Bowl was a post-season American college football bowl game played on December 22, 2014, at Marlins Park in Miami, Florida. The first edition of the Miami Beach Bowl, it featured the American Athletic Conference co-champion Memphis Tigers against the BYU Cougars. It began at 2:00 p.m. EST and aired on ESPN. It was one of the 2014–15 bowl games that comprised the conclusion of the 2014 FBS football season.
Memphis beat BYU in double overtime by a score of 55–48. Afterwards, the two teams engaged in a bench-clearing brawl.Brawl
Brawl or Brawling may refer to:
Brawl, a large-scale fist fight usually involving multiple participants
Brawl, Scotland, a crofting community on the north coast of Scotland
Brawling (legal definition), a rowdy argument on church property
Bench-clearing brawl, a large-scale fight occurring during a game or match
Brawl (band), an American hard rock band that was later renamed Disturbed
Brawl (game), a real-time card game
Brawl (Transformers), a Transformers character
Super Smash Bros. Brawl, a game for Nintendo's Wii video game console
Branle, a French dance style, pronounced "Brawl"Charging the mound
In baseball, charging the mound is an assault by a batter against the pitcher, usually the result of being hit by a pitch or nearly being hit by a pitch, such as a brushback. The first incidence of a professional charging of the mound has not been identified, but the practice dates back to the game's early days. Charging the mound is the most common initiator of a bench-clearing brawl.
Before charging, the batter usually throws his bat and helmet aside so that he may face the pitcher unarmed (it is a very serious breach of baseball etiquette, not to mention dangerous, for the batter to charge the mound with a bat). Though serious injuries have occurred from charging in the past, usually fights are either broken up or joined by all other players so the conflict turns into posturing and name-calling; in baseball parlance, this is known as a rhubarb.
Charging the mound is typically about responding to an indignity rather than an attempt to injure the pitcher. There is long-standing etiquette in baseball regarding what is an acceptable offense to warrant a beaning, and there are similar unwritten rules for charging in response to being hit. While these unwritten rules have become more vague, the response of Major League Baseball to the incidents has become far more strict. Whereas suspensions in the past were rare and usually short, Commissioner Fay Vincent and his successor Bud Selig reacted harshly to both instances of beaning and charging during their respective tenures. Recently, most incidents which have caused the benches to clear have been met with large fines and lengthy suspensions.In Japan, pitchers tip their cap to a batter hit by a pitch if it was not their intent to hit the batter to avoid a mound charging incident.Crosstown Shootout
The Crosstown Shootout is an annual men's college basketball game played between the University of Cincinnati Bearcats and Xavier University Musketeers. The two schools are separated by 3 miles (4.8 km) in Cincinnati, making the archrivalry one of the closest major rivalries in the country. The game was first played in 1927, and has been played every year since 1946. In recent years, the game has been sponsored by Skyline Chili.
Throughout its history, the game has been played at six different venues including the Armory Fieldhouse and Fifth Third Arena on the UC campus; and the Schmidt Field House and Cintas Center on the Xavier campus. However, the majority of the games have been played at two other sites—Cincinnati Gardens and U.S. Bank Arena. The Gardens has served as the regular home court for both schools at different times, and was even shared by both teams from 1987 to 1989. U.S. Bank Arena was UC's home court from 1976 to 1987 when it was known as Riverfront Coliseum.
From 1989 to 2011, the game alternated between the schools' on-campus arenas. However, the 2011 game was marred at the end by a bench-clearing brawl. The Cincinnati Enquirer reported on May 22, 2012 that due to the brawl, the game would be held at U.S. Bank Arena for the next two seasons. The continuation of the series beyond the 2013-14 season would depend on the behavior of the players and fans. On June 14, 2012, both schools held a joint press conference at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center announcing that the annual rivalry will now be called "Skyline Chili Crosstown Classic."On May 13, 2014, after a two year series at U.S. Bank Arena, the two rivals announced at a joint press conference that they would return to playing their annual men's basketball game on-campus, ditching the moniker of Classic in the process and returning the series to its previous name of the Skyline Crosstown Shootout. The agreement for the alternating home-and-home series was for ten years. The first game of the series was held on February 18, 2015 during ESPN's Rivalry Week. Xavier hosted Cincinnati on December 12, 2015 at the Cintas Center. The dates for the first two games were set, ensuring that students are on campus when the game is played.FIU–Miami football brawl
The FIU–Miami football brawl was a bench-clearing brawl that occurred on October 14, 2006 in a college football game between the University of Miami Hurricanes and the Florida International University Golden Panthers (now Panthers) at the Miami Orange Bowl in Miami, Florida.Fred Fitzgibbon
Fred Fitzgibbon (22 October 1917 – 24 January 1999) was an Australian rules footballer who played for Carlton in the Victorian Football League (VFL) during the 1940s.
Fitzgibbon spent his early career at Victorian Football Association (VFA) club Brunswick but when the VFA suspended the competition in 1942 due to the war, he decided to switch leagues and joined Carlton.
Used mainly as a wingman, Fitzgibbon became one of Carlton's most physically aggressive players which at times saw him front the tribunal. The most notable suspensions came in the 1945 finals series and began with a four-match suspension for king-hitting Collingwood forward Len Hustler in the Preliminary Final, which meant he had to watch that year's premiership from the stands.
The Grand Final was marred by many instances of violence, and when teammate Jim Mooring was flattened, Fitzgibbon jumped the fence in his street clothes to take part in a bench-clearing brawl, and exchanged punches with South's Ted Whitfield before police ejected him from the ground. Fitzgibbon was suspended for an additional four matches.
He played every game in the 1947 season, including Carlton's one point win over Essendon in the 1947 Grand Final, to ensure the 1945 suspension wouldn't cost him the chance of playing in a premiership.Graeme Richmond
Graeme Richmond (1934 – 15 September 1991) was a long time administrator of the Richmond Football Club.
Recruited from Geelong College, he played mainly as a defender in Richmond's Thirds from 1951 to 1953. He captained this side and won its Best & Fairest in 1952. He also played 13 games for the Richmond Seconds side in 1952 and 1953. His playing career ended with a serious knee injury but he went on to coach the Richmond Under 17s in 1960 and Under 19s in 1961 and 1962.
He served as Club Secretary from 1962 until 1968, then as Club Treasurer from 1968 to 1969. He was a member of the Richmond Football Club Committee from 1970 through to 1986 and was Vice-President from 1979 until 1983. He was suspended for the rest of the season in 1974 for his involvement in an infamous bench-clearing brawl at Windy Hill in Round 7.
Graeme Richmond was made a life member of the Richmond Football Club in 1967, was a life member of the Victorian Football League and was awarded the VFL's Jack Titus Service Award in 1983.
He was the publican at the Crystal Ballroom in St Kilda, when such acts as The Boys Next Door and Died Pretty were booked.
He died of cancer in 1991 and was posthumously inducted into the Club's Hall of Fame in its inaugural year, 2002.
During the Tigers Centenary year, Graeme was awarded "Servant of the Century" in 100 Tiger Treasures.Jo Jo English
Stephen "Jo Jo" English (born February 4, 1970) is an American professional basketball player who starred at the University of South Carolina in the early 1990s and later played parts of three seasons for the National Basketball Association's Chicago Bulls. English made his NBA debut on December 2, 1992.A 6'4" guard, English is perhaps best remembered for being involved in a bench-clearing brawl with Derek Harper of the New York Knicks during a 1994 NBA Eastern Conference Semifinals playoff game at Chicago Stadium. With NBA Commissioner David Stern in attendance, English and Harper carried their fight into the stands and were subsequently punished with one and two-game suspensions, respectively.
English played just eight games in the following season and later joined the minor-league Continental Basketball Association. He also played for the Adelaide 36ers in the Australian National Basketball League during 1995, averaging 14.8 points in 21 games. He later played in Turkey for two seasons.Knoxville Speed
The Knoxville Speed was a UHL team which played from 1999-2002 in Knoxville, Tennessee with home ice at the James White Civic Coliseum. They were formerly the Madison Monsters, and in April 1999 team owner Andrew Wilhelm announced that the franchise would relocate to Knoxville due to low attendance in Madison.Also, brother Mike Wilhelm was one of the equipment managers to the Speed. Michele Wilhelm assisted with merchandising. The Speed and Asheville Smoke played each other roughly nineteen times a season plus the playoffs. Many die-hard fans, players and broadcasters remember the fierce bench-clearing brawl between the Speed and Asheville Smoke in January 2001.Louis Sleigher
Louis Sleigher (born October 23, 1958 in Nouvelle, Quebec) is a retired professional ice hockey player who played 62 games in one season with the Birmingham Bulls in the World Hockey Association and 194 games over seven seasons in the National Hockey League with the Quebec Nordiques and the Boston Bruins.
In the 1984 NHL Playoffs, Sleigher was a major part of the Good Friday Massacre (French: la bataille du Vendredi saint), in which he knocked Montreal Canadiens player Jean Hamel unconscious during a bench-clearing brawl. The blow eventually contributed to the end of Hamel's playing career. After playing six games for Quebec the following season, Sleigher was dealt to the Boston Bruins where he played two more seasons before retiring.Mike Fichter
Michael James Fichter (born May 1, 1974) is a former Major League Baseball (MLB) umpire. As an MLB umpire, he wore number 80 on his uniform.Fichter, who was born in Illinois in 1974, umpired three games in the American League in 1999, then as a member of the combined MLB umpiring staff worked another 554 games during the 2000 to 2005 seasons. In his 557 total games officiated, he issued 12 ejections, three coming as the result of a bench-clearing brawl between the Detroit Tigers and Kansas City Royals in August 2001.Following his MLB umpiring career, Fichter has worked as an instructor at an umpiring school in Florida, and for a sports equipment manufacturer.Mike Williams (baseball)
Michael Darren Williams (born July 29, 1968) is a former relief pitcher in Major League Baseball who had a 12-year career with the Philadelphia Phillies, Kansas City Royals, Houston Astros and the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1992 through 2003. Listed at 6' 2", 190 lb., Williams batted and threw right handed. He was born in Radford, Virginia.Williams was a two-time National League All-Star in 2002 and 2003. In 2002, he finished third in the league with 46 saves. In his career, he posted a record of 32-54 with 144 saves and a 4.45 earned run average. When he was selected to the 2003 All-Star game, he set the record for being the pitcher with the highest ERA while making an All-Star team. He still remains the only pitcher to play in an All-Star game while having an ERA of over 6.00 during the same regular season.
One of Williams's most famous games was with the Phillies was on July 7, 1993 against the Los Angeles Dodgers. He was brought in as a reliever in the 14th inning, and pitched five shutout innings, gave up a single run in the top of the 20th inning, but subsequently won the game after the Phillies loaded the bases in the bottom of the inning and Lenny Dykstra hit a winning RBI double.On September 24, 1996, Williams threw a pitch behind opposing pitcher Pedro Martínez of the Montreal Expos, which led to Martínez charging after Williams and starting a bench-clearing brawl.
In between, Williams played winter ball with the Cardenales de Lara club of the Venezuelan League in the 1980–1981 season, and later pitched for the St. Petersburg Pelicans of the Senior Professional Baseball Association in its 1989 inaugural season.
Williams grew up in Giles County in southwestern Virginia. Following his playing retirement, he returned to Giles County and has helped with many charities, being a big contributor to the Relay for Life cancer foundation in the community. Besides, the baseball field at Giles High School is named after him and his wife Melissa.
Williams played college baseball at Virginia Tech and in 2004 he was enshrined in the Virginia Tech Sports Hall of Fame.New England Liberty
The New England Liberty was a Women's American football team that played in the Legends Football League for the 2016 season. They played their games at the Verizon Wireless Arena in Manchester, New Hampshire.Their inaugural season got off to a rocky start with a bench clearing brawl after an opening game loss to the Omaha Heart. After losing their first three games, they were forced to forfeit their final game against Atlanta Steam due to being unable to field a full team because of injuries. The team did not return for the 2017 season and was replaced by the Pittsburgh Rebellion.Pat Dunsmore
Patrick Neil "Pat" Dunsmore (born October 2, 1959 in Duluth, Minnesota) is a former professional American football player who played tight end for three seasons for the Chicago Bears. He is a graduate of Ankeny High School in Ankeny, Iowa and Drake University. He switched sports (to football) as a senior in high school and switched positions (to tight end) as a senior in college. He played for Drake during a historically successful era for the school. As a professional, he is best remembered as the recipient of a Walter Payton playoff touchdown and a victim of a pileup in a bench clearing brawl. He is the father of Drake Dunsmore.Patrícia Ice Arena 37
Easton Arena (styled EASTON Arena, formerly Patrícia Ice Arena 37 and Zimný Štadión Piešťany) is an arena in Piešťany, Slovakia. It was built in 1986 and is primarily used for ice hockey and is the home arena of ŠHK 37 Piešťany. It also hosted matches for the 2002 IIHF World U18 Championships and is a perennial host of the Ivan Hlinka Memorial Tournament. It has a capacity of 5,000.
The arena was the primary host of the 1987 World Junior Hockey Championships, which are most notably remembered for the last game played in the tournament on January 4, 1987. In the contest between Canada and the Soviet Union, a bench-clearing brawl erupted in the second period. As the fighting got worse, the decision was made to cut the lights. The game was ultimately suspended and both teams were disqualified (the Soviets had already been eliminated from medal contention but Canada had already clinched a medal and had a chance at gold). The game was televised live in Canada on the CBC and it became a major news event in that country.Rhubarb (disambiguation)
Rhubarb is an herbaceous perennial plant in the genus Rheum cultivated as a vegetable.
Rhubarb may also be used as the English name for the genus Rheum and some of its species.
Rhubarb diet, a fad diet, originating in the Huangdi Neijing, which is gaining popularity in Western Europe
Rhubarb forcer, bell shaped pot with a lid-covered opening at the top used to protect the plant
Rhubarb pie, a pie, popular in Sweden, UK, Ireland and the New England and Upper Midwestern regions of the United States
Rhubarb Triangle, a 23 km² triangle in West Yorkshire, England between Wakefield, Morley and Rothwell, known for producing early forced rhubarbRhubarb may also refer to:
Rhubarb (1951 film), a US baseball comedy
Rhubarb (1969 film), a British short film
Rhubarb Rhubarb, a 1980 remake of the 1969 film
Rhubarb (band), Australian rock band
"Rhubarb", a song by Aphex Twin on the album Selected Ambient Works Volume II
Rhubarb Radio, an internet and community radio station in Birmingham, England
Rhubarb (sound effect), a sound effect mimicking the murmur of a crowd
An RAF World War II code name for operations by aircraft seeking opportunity targets
For the use of the word as meaning a dispute or fight, especially in sports, see Bench-clearing brawlRicky Bottalico
Ricky Paul Bottalico (; born August 26, 1969) is an American former professional baseball right-handed relief pitcher, who played in Major League Baseball (MLB) for the Philadelphia Phillies, St. Louis Cardinals, Kansas City Royals, Arizona Diamondbacks, New York Mets, and Milwaukee Brewers. He compiled a career 3.99 earned run average (ERA), with 116 saves.Bottalico played for South Catholic High School in Hartford, Connecticut under coach Tom DiFiore; Bottalico went on to attend Central Connecticut State University.
On August 2, 1998, while pitching for the Phillies in a game against the San Francisco Giants, Bottalico hit Barry Bonds with a pitch, after which Bonds charged the mound in pursuit of Bottalico, igniting a bench-clearing brawl. The incident resulted in the ejection from the game of both players by home plate umpire Jeff Nelson.After having spent the majority of his early career as a closer, Bottalico’s saves dwindled to a total of five in his last five seasons.As his playing career wound down, the Brewers released him in July 2005. Following a brief August trial with the Boston Red Sox’ AAA team, he was released again, later that month. In 2006, Bottalico was signed by the Baltimore Orioles to a minor-league contract and invited to spring training; however, he failed to make the team, and was released.Throughout his career, Bottalico had many more games finished (GF) (301) than save opportunities (SVO) (160).Bottalico is a commentator for Phillies Pregame Live and Phillies Postgame Live, appearing before and after Phillies broadcasts on NBC Sports Philadelphia.St. Thomas Wildcats
The St. Thomas Wildcats were a professional ice hockey team in the Colonial Hockey League. They played at the St. Thomas-Elgin Memorial Centre in St. Thomas, Ontario. The team was a founding member of the league and was owned by Doug Tarry, Sr. and later by Doug Tarry, Jr., who went on to purchase the London Knights in 1994. The team moved to nearby London, Ontario in 1994 and became the London Wildcats. After playing in London for the 94-95 season, the franchise suspended operations for 1 year before moving to Dayton, Ohio and becoming the Dayton Ice Bandits. The Bandits suspended operations after the 96-97 season.
The Wildcats were Colonial Cup runners-up both in 1991-92 (losing to the Thunder Bay Thunder Cats) and 1992-93 (losing to the Brantford Smoke). The team's NHL affiliations were the Buffalo Sabres and St. Louis Blues.
During the 92-93 season, the Wildcats were involved in 2 major incidents. The first was during the 2nd round of the playoffs, when the Thunder Bay Thunder Cats players went into the stands after their coach was doused with beer by a fan. Players involved included Mel Angelstad and Bryan Wells. During the final round of the playoffs, against the Brantford Smoke, the 2 teams engaged in a bench clearing brawl after the 2nd game of the series. The brawl was started after Kent Hawley of the Wildcats was speared when he went to pick up the game puck after the final whistle. All players were involved, including all 4 goaltenders.Violence in sports
Violence in sports usually refers to violent and often unnecessarily harmful intentional physical acts committed during, or motivated by, a sports game, often in relation to contact sports such as American football, ice hockey, rugby football, lacrosse, association football, boxing, mixed martial arts, wrestling, and water polo and, when referring to the players themselves, often involving excessively violent or potentially illegal physical contact beyond the normal levels of contact expected while playing the sport. These acts of violence can include intentional attempts to injure a player or coach by another player or coach, but can also include threats of physical harm or actual physical harm sustained by players or coaches by fans or those engaging in the spectating of sports, or threats and acts of violence performed by fans or spectators upon opposing fans or other spectators.