Friday, December 9, 2011
God damned Shanahan indeed. It takes a certain level of travesty to force me out of my literary hibernation, but watching Marc-Andre Bourdon skate 13:46 last night against the Penguins while we hear injury reports describing Nathan Gerbe as "dark" and "unclear", well, that's basically enough to do it.
Thanks to the ubiquitous HockeyFights.com; here's the video of the offending play.
So what's the big deal? Players stupidly turn their backs on the play all the time. Well, the problem is consistency.
There's been a total of 7 boarding related suspensions in the league so far this season, the longest being Jody Shelley's 5 preseason + 5 regular season (http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=60&id=124282) suspension, the shortest Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond's 4 preseason + 1 regular season (http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=60&id=124228). Regular season only suspensions have only been 2 or 3 games.
I would have to say the most similar precedent would be Kris Letang's 2 game suspension for boarding Alex Burmistrov, both chipping pucks out and away, both have their backs turned, and both "make no sudden movements immediately prior to or simultaneous with the check."
The only differences I see is Bourdon does drive through Gerbe nor does he have a prior history like Letang does. Although, Gerbe is injured and out indefinitely.
So in Shanahan's world, that's the difference between a 2 minute boarding call (without a hearing) and a 2 night suspension. But why? Where's the consistency, where's the transparency, why the difference?
Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.