THE NHL IS RESPONSIBLE FOR NATHAN HORTON’S INJURY

First, the hit.

Nathan Horton. 26 goals, 27 assists, 53 points. +29. In the playoffs, 8 goals, 9 assists, 17 points. +11. Two of those playoff goals were overtime game winning goals. Horton was 2nd on the team during the playoffs in points. He was fourth in points during the regular season. He is likely gone the remainder of the Finals. As I type this, he is expected to stay overnight at Mass General Hospital.

Aaron Rome. 1 goal, 4 points during the entire season. 1 goal in the playoffs. An expendable, mostly irrelevant player.

The latter takes out the former. Why?

Because the NHL failed.

Because the NHL let Alex Burrows’ bite go without consequence.

Because the NHL has changed for the far worse its officiating and discipline policies in these playoffs.

It has allowed diving and dirty play go. It has allowed cross checking, tripping, hooking, holding and late hits become part of the playoff experience. When one couples that with the emotion and desperation inherent in the NHL playoffs and, most importantly, the Stanley Cup Finals, what you get is one team knowing through league inaction that anything goes.

In game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals, that “any” was also the NHL’s credibility in matters of officiating and discipline. Does the league want to gain a small amount of it back? Aaron Rome must be suspended for the remainder of the Stanley Cup Finals. Nothing less is acceptable.



Categories: L.A. Kings News

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24 replies

  1. Alex Burrows has no business playing hockey if he is going to bite people. He should have been suspended for the rest of the finals as far as I’m concerned. I’m a season seat holder and a Diehard Hockey fan, That’s a maliciouse act that should not go unpunished! SHAME ON THE NHL FOR SAYING THESE KINDS OF ACTIONS ARE OK.

  2. I agree in many ways. I’m not saying it’s easy…quite the opposite. Every intro to every game, every advertisement, it seems, highlights BIG hits b/c it’s what most fans respond to. Already the hit on Horton has been shown half a dozen times in the highlight reel. The guy is in the hospital! I’m sort of off my point though. I have always believed that in situations such as this, perpetrator ought to be out of commission as long as the injured player. Just my opinion, but how else do you stop this sort of thing?

  3. The Bruins have definitely ramped up the antagonism since the Burrows bite was allowed to go unpunished, and now the hit by Rome has put the level up another notch. If he only gets one or two games and is allowed back into the series, since it has to go at least five now, we will know that nothing will be different without Colin Campbell dealing the discipline. There’s a pretty high level of frustration on both sides at this point (When was the last time you saw a Sedin get a game misconduct) and I’m waiting to see if this boils over in the next game.

  4. Absolutely atrocious!
    As said
    Teams -emotional and desperate
    Officials-weak and ineffective
    This is NHL Hockey not the WWF
    did you see the one linesman do a fist to chest and peace sign right after the National Anthem?
    Either it was a prayer to get thru the game(fail)
    or some gang sign flashing.
    As I watched I was foe a moment grateful our Kings were not out there beung injured with dirty plays.
    GO KINGS GO!!!

  5. Looks like Shanny just got his first opportunity to show there’s a new sheriff in town. Let’s hope he rises to the occasion.

  6. Guess I’m alone in excepting it as playoff hockey. No dirtier than some of the stuff from playoffs past. Claude Lemieux had some of the dirtiest hits ever, Tie Domi and so on. I disagree with tying in the biting incident, and attributing it to the hit on Horton. The hit would of happened regardless.

    Rome might not be a key contributer offensively, but just like all role players, 5th and 6th D, and bottom 6 forwards, he’s a major part of there success, just as the role players, 5th and 6th D, and bottom 6 are for Boston.

    I’m not justifying it, just measuring it up to precedence already established from years of watching playoff brutality manifest itself over the last 100 years. In the past, the neanderthals who officiated the game wouldn’t even have stopped play after the hit.

    I do think he’ll probably get 2 games for it, though.

    • I grew up with old time hockey and I like the new NHL far more. Emphasizes speed, skill and the best team often wins. It has unfortunately created an unwanted side effect of hits that can end careers, more so than before because the game is so much more wide open. This side effect needs medicine until the players get it.

    • I agree with you Dom. I don’t think this has anything to do with stats or previous biting incidents. It was a bad late hit, but this was the player’s mistake, not the NHL. This hit would have been pretty close to legal in the 2003 Stanley Cup Finals (Stevens vs Kariya, anyone?).

      I do think players need to keep their head up more though. We’ve seen so many of these crushing hits where the player has his head down or looking away. Head up would have turned many of these into ordinary hard hits with no traumatic brain injury.

      • RE: the legality in 03, I’m just saying that because these players learned to play checking hockey in a time period where things that are illegal now were legal back then, so I can understand them going for a hit like that. I don’t think they’ve played under the new rules long for them to be making the legal play instinctively yet.

        • The purpose of a body check is to knock the player off the puck, not knock the player through the boards and/or his head off. The whole concept of checking has devolved in the NHL.

          • These kinds of hits are nothing new to hockey. See Scott Stevens and Rob Blake. Both were beasts and stepped up at the blue like few others in their era and made devastating hits like this to players looking down or the other way. Players have always made crushing hits intended to knock a player flat on his ass. This is nothing new.

    • I agree with Dom on this one. The article is full of illogical fallacies that Dom points out, the whole “biting = late hit” so the NHL is to blame scenario is laughable. That hit was hardly an egregious violent act. Its not a spear, meant to injure or a cross check meant to board someone. It happened in the center of the ice at the blue line. Rome was late, to be sure, but Horton made the fatal mistake of watching his pass too long. Thats the first thing they teach you- HEAD UP. Rome does deserve a suspension, only because he was late and not because of some cooked up version of events that the author believes has brought us to this point.

      • Biting = late hit? Is that what you read? Ok, well, that may respectfully be misreading what I wrote.

        From what I wrote:

        “Because the NHL failed.

        Because the NHL let Alex Burrows’ bite go without consequence.

        Because the NHL has changed for the far worse its officiating and discipline policies in these playoffs.

        It has allowed diving and dirty play go. It has allowed cross checking, tripping, hooking, holding and late hits become part of the playoff experience. When one couples that with the emotion and desperation inherent in the NHL playoffs and, most importantly, the Stanley Cup Finals, what you get is one team knowing through league inaction that anything goes.”

        The biting is one of many incidents, not “one” incident and not “the” incident. It goes back to the first round and each round thereafter. The NHL stopped enforcing its own rules, once again doing what it stated it would not do – to have a different set of rules in the regular season v. the playoffs…and by that, I mean “application” of the rules.

  7. Um. Okay. I’ll make it brief, since my ability to understand grand concepts has come into question. Your headline “NHL is responsible for Nathan Horton’s injury” is what i disagree with most. If Rome had been one step quicker to Horton it would have been a legal play. At the speed of play, that step is not that far off. Your belief that the application of rules is to blame is faulty. The person responsible for the hit is Rome, not the NHL. Rome was given a game misconduct and kicked out of the game. What more could the league do on that play? And now he is suspended for four games, which is the last thing the Canucks need since they’re short on D-men to begin with. The application of the rules (or lack thereof) was not what led to this play. Had it been a high stick or a taunting action or a retaliation or a boarding, etc. I could understand this possible explanation. However, this Rome/Horton play was bang-bang and was not a retaliation for anything or a product of “one team knowing through league inaction that anything goes.”

  8. The stupid Canucks were the hands down Favorites to Win the the cup from the seasons start

    They made all the right off season moves

    They didn’t make other moves, the experts saw, and no matter who went down, or when they went down, other guys stepped up and they were consistant, respected and feared.

    I hate they’re freakin guts…..but even I saw them hoisting the cup this year, and knew there wasn’t anything that could stop them……

    BUT HOLD ON THERE !!!!!! The Bite, The Hit, The game 3 gang rape they received, the BIG F**king Black eye, NOW, in the Finals….

    There goes the Respect
    There goes the Fear, Nobody fears Bitches, Biting?? Late Blindside hits?? Boston has shown what they think a Canuck really is…..Their Bitch!!!!

    And even if they regain they’re consistantsy and win 2 of the next 4
    Your great season will be remembered by the rest of the league, as the year the Bitches won!!!

    Lastly….All the right moves….but ONE
    How would Willie Mitchell look on your depth chart right now….BITCHES!!!!!!

  9. Bobby Scribe – You grew up with old time hockey?… how old are you 30? What a joke. Define old time hockey – the 80’s? 90s? You have no clue what old time hockey was like. You have no clue what todays hockey is really like on the ice… you probably can’t even skate, let alone play competitive hockey.

  10. Players who try to scratch and gouge faces normally get bit. This is a fact from a former fighter. You don’t want to get bit… don’t scratch like a girl. Former tough guy!

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