I am beyond disgusted with the way the National Hockey League discipline’s the players. Time and time again we witness reckless actions and little to no consequences! What we see even more of is how coaches and management defend these actions, just to hear them complain after it happens to one of their players.
Let me begin with the obvious, Patrick Kaleta of the Buffalo Sabres. I am not going to lie and say I watch a ton of Sabres games. I don’t. However, Kaleta has proven to be nothing more than a dirty player. Average amount of points during his Ontario Hockey League (OHL) career compared to his games played. 264 games played and only 147 points. His most impressive stat, if you want to call it that, is his 458 penalty minutes. His NHL stats up to date are 285 games played, 50 points and once again his impressive stat is his penalty minutes, 480. This latest act, where he hits an opponent from behind, who had no chance of protecting himself, was repulsive. All he got was a measly 5 games. Really? What kind of message are you sending? A repeat offender who contributes very little to the game and he is issued a 5 game vacation? Smells like bullshit to me.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hy37edhJr8s Watch this punk in action.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PmXOjTMjN_4 Hits like these are not taken seriously.
Then there is Matt Cooke. I don’t have the time or patience to write about every cheap shot or suspension. The list is a mile long. Yet he still plays and is employed by the Pittsburgh Penguins. The same Pittsburgh Penguins who are owned by Mario Lemieux. Mario was quoted back in 1991.
“ Back in his playing days, during the 1991-92 season, Lemieux complained long and loud that NHL referees encouraged players of lesser talent to beat up on stars like him by not calling penalties. He said then that the NHL was “a garage league.”
Read the article, and then you can say “Well now, isn’t that hypocritical?”
Can’t believe I am going to say this, I agree with Don Cherry. It is rare this Hockey Night in Canada host makes a comment that is on point, but does pull a rabbit out of the hat once in a while. Watch the following clip, Cherry rips into Matt Cooke.
The following clip shows a play with Cooke coming down on Erik Karlsson, arguably the best defender in the NHL. I for one believe it was no accident.
“Senators owner Eugene Melnyk was outraged by the incident, stating “To have him (Karlsson) taken out by a goon is unconscionable. It’s something that never should have happened. This player (Cooke) should never be playing in this league. It’s a league for elite players”. (taken from Wikipedia)
Speaking of hypocritical, Claude Julien. Head coach of the dirtiest team in the NHL. The Boston Bruins. Milan Lucic, Scott Thorton, Brad Marchand, Adam McQuaid… The list goes on. Zdeno Chara isn’t a between the whistle player, but has no prior reputation. Why? He never gets punished. I have rarely seen a team whine and complain as much as the Bruins. To think this is the organization that had both Bobby Orr and Raymond Bourque anchoring the blue line. When you talk sore loser, you talk Boston Bruins. The owner is best buds with the commissioner. The former league disciplinarian son is on the team. They have a player recovering from a serious head injury, Marc Savard, who was hit by none other than Matt Cooke. Yet this goon squad continues to cross the line and never faces consequences.
Read the blog and watch the videos. Embarrassing and pathetic. Gets my blood boiling.
For a league that goes on strike often and uses words like “brotherhood” and “code”, makes its reputation is laughable. Where is this “brotherhood” when it comes to kicking out repeat offenders? There is no “code”, for if there was we would see these jackasses get what they deserve. I guess karma is what happens to bush league players, just ask Chris Pronger. At the end of the day, this is a professional sports league. Many people of all ages look up to the players, coaches and even management. I don’t care what anyone says, the NHL is sending the wrong message. Quite frankly, it’s embarrassing.