Ethan Moreau’s lucky to not be another statistic for NHL Director of Player Safety Brendan Shanahan. Moreau was fined $2,500 for hit hit from behind on Pittsburgh’s Chris Kunitz. The $2,500 is the maximum allowable under the CBA and that money goes to the NHL Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
For Moreau, it’s the first time he’s run afoul of the law at all in the NHL, so a fine isn’t out of the question. Of course now that he’s landed on the discipline radar, the next time something happens he won’t likely to wind up being so lucky. Being a first time offender hasn’t stopped Shanahan from levying a suspension already this season, so Moreau is doubly fortunate.
Moreau getting a two-minute penalty for the hit and then a fine should be enough to keep him flying on the straight and narrow the rest of the way. The question of whether that’s enough to deter future hits is out there and whether or not the punishment fits this crime as well. Shanahan is still busy setting a track record of his own and if other players get lit up for hits similar to this one there’s going to be complaints.
Of course, there are complaints no matter what so… Perhaps Shanahan is just playing the role of Sisyphus in all of this.