The meetings that were recently held with the NHL’s general managers and other bigwigs here in Boca Raton focused on a number of items, but the most discussed topic was hits to the head. How to handle them, how to penalize them, and how to stop them. What I have come to figure out is the following: They don’t know how to handle them. They haven’t figured out how to “penalize” them, and they certainly haven’t stopped them.
It’s been said in the past that playoff hockey is a different brand of hockey than the regular season. It usually is. Except for one thing this year. Hits to the head. They have not been banned, nor have they been stopped. The NHL has continued to be inconsistent in it’s rulings. Here’s the Raffi Torres hit again:
What should have resulted in not only a five minute penalty, recieved only two. In addition there was no suspension given to Torres, who ironically just returned from serving a suspension on a hit to Jordan Eberle. Tonight, the Blackhawks who face elimination from their first round playoff series against the Vancouver Canucks, will sit Brent Seabrook, while Torres plays on. Unconscionable.
Steve Downie of the Tampa Bay Lightning destroys, er um, almost decapitates Ben Lovejoy of the Pittsburgh Penguins:
Chris Kunitz of the Penguins “blatantly” elbows Simon Gagne of the Lightning. Gagne has suffered from head injuries before and Kunitz has been known to play it rough as well:
Both Downie and Kunitz were given one game suspensions by the NHL today.
Three hits. 2 games of suspensions handed out, and one player at this point not able to play oin what could be his teams final game of the season. Brutal….just brutal.
The players in each case either used their elbows, left their feet and or aimed for the head. Sorry, but this crap has to stop. I have said 1,000 times before, I love physical play, but damn it, this kind of stuff makes me sick. If the NHL isn’t going to hand out proper suspensions then let the players in question dress with a straight jacket on and make them fair game for the opposition?
While we’re at it, the NHL has a new T.V. deal. ESPN is the apparent loser. NHL.com.
Please visit our NHL main page: Too Many Men On The Site.
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