It’s another day, another sickening hit that makes you wonder how the culture of taking liberties with opponents will ever be altered.
Wednesday’s suspension-worthy hit du jour featured Calgary Flames forward Curtis Glencross boarding Minnesota Wild defenseman Clayton Stoner. This hit seems like a more severe twin to the hit Alex Ovechkin delivered on Brian Campbell last season, which earned Ovechkin a suspension and put Soupy on the shelf for quite some time.
Much like Stoner’s defenselessness during the play, there’s no defending Glencross for this hit. It was unnecessary.
Michael Russo points out that Stoner seemed OK despite seemingly hurting his shoulder, although Russo also reminds us that symptoms can show up after the fact. The NHL seems to base the severity of his disciplinary punishments on how injured a victim ends up, which is pretty unfortunate because hits like these need to stop. (Still, it’s good to know that Stoner shouldn’t miss too much time.)
We’ll keep an eye on the situation, as Glencross has a suspension in his past (a three-game punishment in November 2009). You can check out the video below to decide for yourself whether he deserves to be suspended or not.
As PHT’s mentioned before, the Florida Panthers stand as a fascinating contrast between youth and experience.
Let’s not kid ourselves, though; fresh faces usually beat out gray beards, at least when it comes to teams that are still trying to build toward contender status.
While it’s by no means official, two Panthers beat writers – the Miami Herald’s George Richards and the Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov – report that the Panthers are likely to pass on Martin Havlat.
It wasn’t just about the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad leading the charge. Other young Panthers (maybe most notably Quinton Howden and Connor Brickley) made the team, thus making Havlat less necessary.
One would assume that it might be tough for the 34-year-old to find work, at least if he insists upon only an NHL deal.
Health issues continue to dog him, but he’s no longer one of those guys who tantalizes with talent when he is healthy enough to play.
Havlat also doesn’t really bring much to the table defensively. While other veterans can kill penalties and show a little more verstaility, Havlat’s greatest selling point is scoring.
Could this be it for a solid career that may nonetheless end with a “What if?” or two?
Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.
The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.
The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:
That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.
Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:
Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.
Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.