Tonight's game between the Wild and the Canadiens was not one that was big date on anyone's calendar. OK, maybe on JS' calendar, but not anyone else. It's one of those throw away games that NHL rules require to give the schedule a semblance of "balance." Because playing each team once a year, and flip-flopping where that game is played makes everything even.
Sure it does.
The game turned out to be something of a masterpiece of lunacy and bizarre hockey. Anytime Matt Kassian scores two goals in one game, you can bet things weren't exactly on the "normal track." The fact that the Wild came back from a three goal deficit to tie the game, only to lose in a shootout (after benching their new shootout stud) as Devin Setoguchi fell down... it all adds up to a night worthy of a Monty Python movie.
The game also had its share of violence. Could some of it get a look from Brendan Shanahan? Let's take a look.
We start with Ryan White sucker punching Stephane Veilleux. (Video from Nate Wells over at the SBN Minnesota Hub)
So Veilleux stirs the pot, Nick Campoli puts him in a head lock, and in skates White to deliever a couple blows while Veilleux is held down.
The question is, is this suspension worthy. Honestly, that's doubtful. This happens more often than you would think, and nothing ever comes of it. Is is disgusting? Absolutely. But Shanahan is going to look at it from a player safety perspective, and it just isn't going to rise to that level. I could certainly be wrong, but the league doesn't suspend people for violating "The Code."
To be sure, if the league wanted to clean up the game, this would be a suspension worthy move. The league doesn't suspend things like this. I cannot think of a single time they have. As much as it is dirty, classless, and disgusting, I wouldn't hold my breath.
Next up we have Warren Peters hitting Alexi Emelin from behind:
I don't see a suspension here, either. Stranger things have happened, but Emelin certainly spins around at the last second. Tough for Peters to stop at that point. That said, it was certainly charging, as Peters had a full head of steam before he laid the hit.
Yes, he hit Emelin from behind, yes Emelin was hurt. That's not enough for a suspension. If Pierre-Marc Bouchard turned enough to get Zach Bogosian off, then Emelin was way past that point. If this gets suspended, Shanahan is a bigger joke than anyone thought before.
There you have it, Wilderness. I don't see a suspension for either player. With that conclusion, expect both players to sit for five games, just because I said they wouldn't.