This Article is About
stanley cup playoffs
detroit red wings
nashville predators
henrik zetterberg
philadelphia flyers
pittsburgh penguins
Contentious First Round Marks The NHL Playoffs, Fans Treated To Old Time Hockey All Around
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Contentious First Round Marks the NHL Playoffs, Fans Treated to Old Time Hockey All Around

The first round of the NHL's Stanley Cup Playoffs has been nothing short of amazing, to put it mildly. There are a number of things going on that has set this playoff season apart from others in previous years. First, there has been the scoring- including blow out scores between rivals Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins- Pittsburgh, looking at a first round sweep bounced back from the brink to win game four 10-3. And then there have been the penalties, the bad calls and the uneven punishments.

Brendan Shanahan, the Vice President of Hockey and Business Development and the league's head disciplinarian has his work cut out for him sorting out the problems that have arisen in the post season, including some inconsistent calls on ice and some equally inconsistent punishments handed out after the fact. It started with game one between the Nashville Predators and the Detroit Red Wings where an amazing number of calls, many slanted largely to the home team Predators were meted out. The Wings would lose that game, but not before Predator captain, Shea Weber rammed Detroit stand out, Henrik Zetterberg's head into the end boards repeatedly. For that, Weber was fined but not suspended.

The Penguins' James Neal managed to target the heads of two Flyers players- in the same shift on ice but was not given any penalty minutes during that game causing it to erupt into disgruntled chaos with fight after fight breaking out. Officials would get one set of combatants pulled apart only to have two other players start scuffling behind them. Neal would eventually get a penalty in that game and then was suspended for one game for his actions. But, there is no consistency: The New York Rangrs' Carl Hagelin got a three game suspension for an elbow but Byron Bitz was given only two for the same infraction. Ottawa's Matt Carkner was only suspended for a single game for punching Brian Boyle- with Boyle already down on the ice and defenseless.

None are causing more of a stir than Raffi Torres, though. Torres, currently with the Phoenix Coyotes, hit Marian Hossa, of the Chicago Blackhawks, leaving the ice with both skates in what is being called one of the dirtiest plays of the playoffs. Hossa would be taken to the local hospital via ambulance but released later. Torres is no stranger to the discipline office- in December he was given a $2500 fine after nailing former Columbus teammate Jan Hedja with an elbow. Three days later, Torres was back in hot water, suspended for two games for a charge.

Which teams are going to make it to round two is only one of the questions that needs to be answered. The other is what will Shanny do about these oddly uneven calls and punishments?


Street Talk

Amie, Hockey seems to be chock-full of fighting! Didn't realize that referees are making it happen too. blessings, Cynthia

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I fully hold the refs responsible for what happened in the Pittsburgh/Philadelphia game. They should have at least penalized Neal instead of leaving him out on the ice like a wounded gazelle in a sea of slobbering lions.

Reply
  about 1 decade ago

I agree Amie. I miss playing and coaching the game, but my body doesn't. :)

  
  about 1 decade ago

I couldn't handle hockey. Went to one game when a friend was radio-broadcasting it. Hmm... Winter Hawks? Violent...

  
  about 1 decade ago
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