TSN's Bob McKenzie tweeted earlier today that Calgary has yet to hear from the NHL about a disciplinary hearing for the hit Curtis Glencross laid on Clayton Stoner last night. Despite everyone from the TSN panel to Flames fans themselves thinking Glencross deserved a suspension, the NHL has decided to once again punish the outcome rather than the hit.
I called it last night on Twitter, saying that since Stoner was not hurt, the NHL would simply pretend it never happened. Repeat offender, violent play, dirty hit from behind, driving Stoner head first into the boards? Why would you possibly want to suspend him for that? After all, Glencross was likely just "playing with passion," right Coli?
The best part of all of this? We won't even get a reason from the league. We will simply hear the deafening silence that is so common from HQ.
Can't wait for the comments that I only feel he should be suspended because the play came against the Wild. I love those. Make the jump for the reasoning for why he should be suspended.
First, Glencross has been suspended before. In November of 2009, he was suspended for 3 games for a blindside hit on Chris Drury of the New York Rangers. The hit left Drury with a concussion, likely the determining factor in the suspension.
This is what that hit looked like:
Clearly, the league was sending a message to Glencross. Be safer, or face face the consequences. Lesson learned, right? Wrong.
Earlier this season, Glencross would cross check the face of Vancouver's Keith Ballard. Turns out, cross checking someone's face is not allowed in the NHL rule book. Being a repeat offender, and again showing he has no ability to control himself, clearly the league would send a resounding message. Right? Wrong. Here is that hit:
What did Glencross get for trying to decapitate a member of the opposition? A fine. Despite already having been suspended for a dangerous hit, he escapes a long sit because Ballard wasn't injured. Glencross even said he felt he was "blameless on the play." Blameless. Right. Probably all Ballard's fault for driving his face into Glencross' stick.
Having been suspended once, fined another time, Glencross would certainly be smart enough to walk on egg shells for awhile, let the heat cool down, and keep his nose clean. Lord knows, he wouldn't want to be suspended again, and miss the superb season the Flames are having. Never again would Curtis Glencross wish to cross paths with the NHL disciplinary system. Right? Well... so far, so good.
This is the third time we have posted this video here at Hockey Wilderness, but rather than make you chase after it, here is the hit from last night:
I can see how the league would want to make it clear to players that this type of play is, at most, going to get them a major penalty. No reason to send the message that driving a player head first into the end boards will be met with harsh consequences. After all, since no injury occurred this time, that obviously means that injury was impossible, and will never happen in similar hits.
There really is no reason to get overly upset by this lack of action. The league's disciplinary system is a joke, it makes the league a joke, and everyone who has ever read a hockey blog knows the reasons why. It still strikes me as sad that players do this to each other, that the league turns a blind eye to it, and that the owners (who ARE the league) do not take action to protect the investment they have made into these players.
Keep in mind, the Flames do not play until tomorrow. The league could still technically take action. The likelihood of that happening is about as likely as me getting a response from the league to the email I sent requesting comment.
We'll talk to all the next time the league screws up the discipline of a dangerous action. So... you know... after tonight's games most likely.