LeBrun reports that there won’t be a meeting with the league and “no further discipline is planned” for Bertuzzi.
This might come as a surprise for some, especially those who wanted a substantial suspension such as Steve Lepore from Versus. The NHL discipline system’s many critics will wonder if Matt Cooke’s hefty suspension was just an aberration, especially since Bertuzzi’s career has a serious elephant in the room.
On the other hand, there may be just as many people who agree with LeBrun’s assessment that the hit was more “clumsy/stupid” than vicious.
Personally, I think that a one-game suspension might have been appropriate considering the way Bertuzzi delivered the blow (he appeared to leave his feet and turned his back to Johnson). To his credit, Bertuzzi has maintained a pretty clean record since the awful Steve Moore incident, so he might be a “repeat offender” but some may wonder if the statute of limitations ran out on that to some extent.
It wasn’t an egregious hit, but maybe a light additional punishment would have been appropriate, even if Johnson wasn’t injured by the check.
Anyway, how do you feel about the lack of an additional punishment? He did receive a five-minute major (which could have hurt his team in that game) and a game misconduct (almost giving him a one-game suspension, in a way), so it’s not like he didn’t receive discipline at all. Let us know how you feel about it in the comments.