December 10 2016 11:04AM
Players from the Vancouver Canucks and New Jersey Devils surprised no one on Tuesday night when they responded to a hit by the Devils’ Taylor Hall on an unsuspecting Philip Larsen.
The hit looks like a clean one—if we’re talking about the NHL rule book. Judgement beyond that depends on how you feel about a player ploughing into an oblivious, deer-like opponent in the area of the ice I like to refer to as Raffi Torres’ playpen.
The even more deplorable scene took place after the hit when players from both sides rushed behind the net to punch each other in the face with complete disregard for the injured player who inspired their ire.
Larsen stretchered off, knocked out cold after Hall hit. Prayers are with him. pic.twitter.com/aPQgSQlDO3— Hockey Central (@HockeyCentraI) December 7, 2016
This is a perfect example of the boneheaded, toxic masculinity that plagues the sport of hockey, the sporting world in general and, if we want to get really "big picture" here, our society as a whole.
So why not implement a minor penalty for making contact with an injured player who is down on the ice? Regardless of whether it’s a teammate or an opponent, if you skate into that player’s head while he/she is out cold—make contact with them in any way—then you sit for two minutes. Is this not an obvious rule change? Has somebody more important than me not already thought of this?
Wishing Philip Larsen a happy birthday and quick recovery.— Vancouver Canucks (@Canucks) December 7, 2016
Larsen was discharged from hospital & medically cleared to return to Vancouver. pic.twitter.com/Zx2nb8jdqg
NHL Not So Hot on 2018 Olympics
I’ve personally always been lukewarm on Olympic hockey, probably stemming in-part from my disdain for nationalism and generally waning patriotic feelings. But I understand that most fans want to see the NHL at the Olympics and that most players want a chance to play. I also understand that if the league loses money on this tournament every four years while its star-player-money-makers risk injury on foreign ice, then they don’t have a lot of impetus to go along with it.
What if the NHL does choose not to participate in 2018? Would other major leagues like the KHL, SHL and the Liiga follow suit? Or would the Scandinavian and Russian Olympic teams benefit greatly from a tournament in Pyeongchang sans NHL?
Imagine a Team Canada and Team USA comprised partly of high-flying teenagers looking to make an impression in their draft year, playing underdog against the best players from Europe. That’s a tournament I wouldn’t want to miss.
Islanders Sign Clutterbuck to a Five Year Deal
I guess the Islanders felt it necessary to find someone to grow rich, old and irrelevant with Andrew Ladd.
The Swarm thinks Cal Clutterbuck is worse than 83.2% of NHL players active since 2014-15.— Corsica (@CorsicaHockey) December 9, 2016
Creating Player Ratings Using Swarm Intelligence
Strangely enough, his twitter account (@MannyElk) seems to have gone quiet...
Las Vegas Golden Knights Trademark Rejected
It appears the NHL's new Las Vegas franchise failed to do their homework before submitting a trademark request for their new digs.
I don't actually believe that.
I think that, obviously, the franchise knew about the small fry College of Saint Rose team all along but decided to go with the Golden Knights name and logo anyway, despite the possible conflict. The team could have gone with any iteration of their preferred "Knights" moniker, but chose the already occupied space.
It's a conflict that could have been easily avoided by any small amount of creativity on the part of the brand new multimillion dollar professional sports franchise. Las Vegas: you could have called your team literally anything.
I get the feeling someone will be making a fat donation to the College of Saint Rose before this little mix up is officially in the past.