Makin’ It Up as We Go Along

Congratulations to those who had October 27th in the “When will Colin Campbell re-define the NHL rules” pool.  According to the Hockey Central crew on Versus, the NHL will not be suspending Toronto Maple Leafs forward Colton Orr for making contact with an official. 

In case you missed it, here’s his scrap with Anaheim’s George Parros from Monday night.

Scroll to the one minute mark to see the contact. 

Now before we go any further, let’s look at the NHL rules as stated in their rule book when it comes to players making contact with an official.

41.3 Automatic Suspension – Category II – Any player or goalkeeper who deliberately applies physical force to an official in any manner, which physical force is applied without intent to injure, or who spits on an official,shall be automatically suspended for not less than ten (10) games.

So let’s rundown this checklist and apply it to this situation- Orr deliberately sticks out his hand, places it on the lineman’s chest, and pushes off.  Yes, he’s a bit off-balance so the fall makes it more dramatic. 

Unfortunately, the rule clearly states ‘any manner, which physical force is applied without intent to injury’.  He made physical force and applied it without intent to injure.  What else does Campbell need to see?

Apparently, I’m the only one who feels like the hammer should have come down on Orr.  Lord knows the Anaheim color guy doesn’t agree with me.

Maybe it’s just me, but I prefer for the people in charge of the NHL to enforce their written rules instead of trying to figure out what Orr actually was trying to do by pushing off the linesman.  He deliberately made physical contact without intent to injure.  End of story.  10 games. 

If you really want to diagram the situation, let’s look at it from the linesman’s perspective.  The two guys were fighting for nearly a full minute, throwing a ton of punches.  One of the combatants loses his helmet and appears to be wearing out.  If Orr was to fall to the ice and crack his head, everyone would be wondering why the linesman didn’t step in.  Instead, he steps in, gets shoved to the ice, and then gets blamed for it.

Why should the NHL stick up for its officials, it’s not like they’re important or anything.  

–A couple of really odd items from Tim Sassone in his weekly examination of the NHL.  And that’s not even taking into account his bizarre pining for a NHL team to take a flyer on the ancient Chris Chelios. 

Sassone bemoans the current injury epidemic currently affecting the league:

Some of the game’s best players are out with injuries, which isn’t good for the NHL.

The Thrashers have lost Ilya Kovalchuk for a month with a broken foot. Kovalchuk joined the growing list of injured stars that includes Jonathan Toews, Johan Franzen, Marc Savard, Daniel Sedin, David Booth, Brent Seabrook, Danny Markov, Sergei Gonchar and Mike Modano.

Whoa, that’s a lot of names.  Let’s look at them one-by-one.

Ilya Kovalchuk- No question, he’s a star and also my wet dream trade-deadline acquisition for the Hawks.

Jonathan Toews- Captain of an Original 6 franchise, if I squint for awhile, I guess he’s a star too.

Johan Franzen- Key component of a Cup winner.  Solid two-way player.  Unfortunately, he’ll never be confused with Pavel Datsyuk and Henrik Zetterberg, so I’m sorry, he’s not a NHL star.

Marc Savard- Tremondous individual stats, been a point-per-game player for the last 5 years.  However, I’ve yet to hear someone say, “Hey, guess who’s coming to town this weekend?  Marc Savard and the Bruins.”  Not a star.

Daniel Sedin- Franchise player but also might be more famous because he has an identical twin.  Nevertheless, we’ll say a star.

David Booth- Nice player, but in absolutely no way would anyone in a sober state of mind consider him a NHL star.  The player who put him on the injured list is a different story.

Brent Seabrook- If a respected hockey publication recently named you the most underrated player in the NHL, you’re not a star.

Danny Markov- We’ll give Tim the benefit of the doubt on this one.  Danny Markov, a journeyman defenseman, retired four years ago.  Andrei Markov was probably who he meant.  While he’s incredibly important to the Canadiens success, nobody is going to confuse him with Larry Robinson anytime soon.

Sergei Gonchar- First of all, he could be on a list of injured players in nearly every season he plays.  Second, not a star.

Mike Modano- Hasn’t been a star since the Clinton Administration.

If you’re keeping track, that’s three injured stars and a bunch of other guys.  Not exactly the most desperate of times for the NHL.

Then, there’s this:

Hawks GM Stan Bowman told WGN radio any tough guy he might consider acquiring would need to be able to skate to play on the team.

Here are five tough guys who might be available:

1. Derek Boogaard, Wild: Heavyweight is an unrestricted free agent after the season.

2. Matt Carkner, Senators: Led NHL with 5 fighting majors through the weekend.

3. Darcy Hordichuk, Canucks: No way the Canucks send him here, right?

4. Colton Orr, Maple Leafs: The Maple Leafs need to shake things up.

5. Dan Carcillo, Flyers: Philly also has Ian Laperriere

Naming five guys who would have a tough time getting 10 minutes a night for the Rockford IceHogs, let alone the Blackhawks, is probably not what Stan has in mind. 

Like I said, odd.  

*On the Farm*

Rockford came out like gangbusters against the Chicago Wolves.  They outshot them 17-6 in the first period and to show for it, they had a 1-1 tie.  Bryan Bickell got the IceHogs on the board with his second goal of the season with assists from Nathan Davis and Bracken Kearns

The Wolves answered back with the next two goals.  Chris Chelios had assists on both of them.  The Hogs tied it late in the second period when Nathan Davis scored his fifth of the year.  Bickell and Evan Brophey were credited with assists.

The game remained that way until the shootout.  All the IceHogs were denied by Manny Legace and Tim Stapleton was the only player to score against Corey Crawford to give his team the win. 

Byron Froese was held off the scoresheet for the Everett Silvertips.  Fortunately, they still held on to beat the Kootenay Ice 4-1.

Kyle Beach had a hat trick for the Spokane Chiefs.  It wasn’t enough to get the win, though, as they lost 5-4 to the Brandon Wheat Kings.  Beach scored his first two goals within a minute and a half in the first period including one on the power play.  His third goal came in the third with his team down 5-3.

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4 Responses to Makin’ It Up as We Go Along

  1. Battery says:

    The icehogs totally got screwed on the goal that was waved off too.

    They should have came away with 2 pts and the wolves zero

  2. Dave Morris says:

    Geez, guess Mr. Sassone had some time to kill and some space to fill. ;-)

  3. Sloop says:

    I really don’t know why people have this obsession with having a goon on the team. We didn’t have a goon last year and I don’t for one second think that would have made any difference in the series against the Wings, who themselves didn’t really have a goon. Those 5 guys that sassone mentioned are on some pretty bad/mediocre teams that I don’t think anyone would consider cup contenders. (The Canucks like to think they are.) Perhaps their GM’s don’t have the best approach. Instead of worry about getting a big guy who can “keep up” (which really means he’s still slowing us down) we should look for a guy who would push us forward.

  4. Lou says:

    Power play needs some serious freakin work. Embarassing at this point.

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