Asham surprised by suspension length, thought Backstrom’s cross-check was “a lot worse”

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Another day, another critique of the NHL discipline.

This time, though, the critique comes not from an organization (here’s looking at you, Washington and New York) but rather a suspended player — Pittsburgh’s Arron Asham.

The 34-year-old forward was suspended four games for cross-checking Philadelphia’s Brayden Schenn in the face during Game 3, meaning Asham would miss the remainder of the opening playoff round.

On Thursday, the Pens forward expressed dismay over his punishment.

“I was surprised by the number of games,” Asham told Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “I thought [Nicklas] Backstrom’s was a lot worse.”

Backstrom received one game for his cross-check to the face of Rich Peverley. In light of Asham’s comments, let’s do a video review of both incidents!

Asham on Schenn:

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Backstrom on Peverley:

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Not sure what constitutes “worse” in a discussion of facial cross-checks (both were pretty bad) but Asham punctuated his by punching Schenn afterward…so there’s that.

There’s also the not-so-tiny issue of Asham being the guy that put Jay Beagle to sleep — a clip with horrible optics that got a lot of airtime. When it came time to punish for the Schenn cross-check, it probably didn’t play into Asham’s favor that he was the instigator of another highly-publicized act of violence.