As expected, Bruins’ defenseman Andrew Ference was suspended Sunday for his hit on Rangers’ d-man Ryan McDonagh. He got three games for boarding #27 on Saturday.
Since the 2011-2012 season began, 34 players have sat out a combined 140 battles. Most of the suspensions were from hits to the head. I believe Brendan Shanahan deserves an A for the work he has done so far. The only decision I would of liked to have seen differently is the Milan Lucic vs. Ryan Miller incident. Lucic bowled over Miller, who was out of his crease, on November 12th. He suffered a concussion as a result of what I still call, a gutless play. Shanahan didn’t think there was any intent on Lucic’s part. He told NHL.com, “I had the hearing because I did make an initial assessment of the play as I do with all plays, but I did have some questions for Milan and I wanted to hear directly from him. They were regarding his intent; at what point did he know there was going to be a collision; and whether or not he felt he had the time to avoid the collision. I was satisfied with his answers.”
I was surprised with the ruling as it basically declared open season on goalies when they are not in their net. Some people think it should be fair game when the goalie steps out of the blue paint but I very much disagree. The NHL needs to protect their best players, and that includes the men between the pipes. Most teams have one decent goaltender and if he goes down, it’s very likely so does their playoff hopes.