I believe that a new NHL rule should be implemented to reduce intentional injuries in hockey. The rule would apply to those players that viciously injure their opponents putting them out of the game and possibly several games. The offending player should be suspended for as many games as the injured player is out. Simple. Effective. Fair. Justice.
There are far too many whacks with the hockey sticks (slashing in hockey lingo) injuring players. I am not talking about incidental nips, I am referring to the intentional slashes at a players hand. Two years ago P.K. Subban of the (then) Montreal Canadiens put Mark Stone of the Ottawa Senators out for the season with a fractured wrist from a slash to the hand.
It should not matter if the victim or the offender is the best player in the league or a fourth liner; the rule should be consistent to make it effective. The quality of player is another can of worms; many believe Sidney Crosby (arguably the best player in the NHL) gets away with much more than the average player because of his elevated status in the game.
Did you see the whack (slash) on Marc Methot’s hand compliments of the great Sidney Crosby last night as the Ottawa Senators played (beat) the Pittsburgh Penguins? Maybe not the slash, because apparently, the referees did not see that either. Although it was displayed on the scoreboard for the Ottawa fans at the game to see. We (viewers at home too) all saw Methot’s bloody finger with the nail and skin hanging off the end. We all saw Crosby skate off with a bored (no remorse there) look on his face too. No apology was issued either. Word is if the hit had been higher on the hand, Methot may have lost his finger.
Another funny (not really) fact is that high sticks, regardless of whether they are intentional or not, are always penalized. In fact, the victim tries very hard to produce blood to get an additional two minutes added to the penalty. The referee even checks the victim over for the presence of blood before deciding to give the perpetrator two or four minutes in the sin bin.
The blood was pretty evident at the end of Methot’s finger, for all to see. No penalty call from the refs though. Was that because Sidney Crosby was the offender? Sure looked that way…
Methot is out for several weeks; Crosby is playing again tonight. Where is the justice in that? A new NHL injury rule might help, certainly wouldn’t hurt!