Tag: suspension debates

Nicklas Backstrom

Nicklas Backstrom’s late cross-check could bring suspension


The Boston Bruins’ increasingly tense and remarkably tight 4-3 win against the Washington Capitals got awfully chippy as the game went along. One of the surprising parties involved in the violence was Capitals star Nicklas Backstrom, who might just be in line for a suspension for this:

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Mike Vogel has the details:

“In addition to match penalty, player shall be automatically suspended from further competition until Commissioner has ruled on the issue.”

There are a few interesting things to consider. The NHL likely has the right to rescind the penalty, thus stripping the automatic suspension from the situation. Of course, the league had a similar (in some ways) opportunity in regard to Craig Adams, who received a one-game suspension.

Will Adams’ suspension serve as a precedent-setter? Could Backstrom’s star status get him out of it? More importantly, do you think Backstrom deserves to get off the hook?

The Swedish center already has an overtime game-winner in this series, so this could be another big loss for Washington after they fell in Game 3.

More on the incident

Dale Hunter doesn’t think it is suspension-worthy.

Rich Peverley tells his side of the story.

Adams might not have a chance to pull Hartnell’s hair in Game 4


For a moment, it seemed like Sidney Crosby and Scott Hartnell were going to drop the gloves during Game 4. Instead, Pittsburgh Penguins winger – and Harvard product – Craig Adams stepped in to bail Crosby out of possible instigator implications. In the process, it appeared that he may have tugged on Hartnell’s lush locks, but believe it or not, that might not be the worst result of that exchange.

As Seth Rorabaugh points out, Adams might be guilty of breaking Rule 46.22, which states that a player will be suspended one game for incurring an instigator penalty late in a game. Such a scenario would also theoretically set Dan Bylsma back at least $10K according to Rorabaugh.

Of course, Rorabaugh also points out that the rule is rarely enforced – at least during the postseason. In fact, Evgeni Malkin got away with a prominent example of what could have been interpreted as a violation of the rule during Game 2 of the 2009 Stanley Cup finals but didn’t face a suspension.

In other words, Hartnell’s follicles should be warned because Adams is likely going to be available for Wednesday’s contest. Still, it’s a good excuse to linger on a moment that was strange even compared to the weird series of events that came before it, isn’t it? (Click here to watch the full game again, by the way.)

Matt Carkner will miss a game for fighting Brian Boyle

NEW YORK, NY - APRIL 14: Matt Carkner #39 of the Ottawa Senators and Brian Boyle #22 of the New York Rangers are at the bottom of the pile in this first period battle in Game Two of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden on April 14, 2012 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Just moments ago, the New York Rangers lost valuable winger Carl Hagelin for three games – the most severe suspension of the 2012 season – for elbowing Daniel Alfredsson. With that in mind, Rangers fans might not be especially happy that Ottawa Senators tough guy Matt Carkner received a single game suspension for beating the daylights out of Brian Boyle.

(Slow motion doesn’t do Carkner many favors, does it?)

I’ll be honest; I’m not totally sure that the NHL’s developing an intelligible pattern with its disciplinary decisions. Does this punishment seem fair to you? Did Carkner deserve more games, no suspension or was this A-OK? How about if you look at it without thinking about Hagelin’s punishment, if possible? Share your observations in the comments.