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Lucic suspended one game for boarding

Dec 19, 2011, 2:52 PM EDT

TSN reports that NHL discipline czar Brendan Shanahan has suspended Boston Bruins forward Milan Lucic one game for boarding Philly’s Zac Rinaldo:

Lucic received a five-minute major and game misconduct for the hit, which was all kinds of contentious. Rinaldo didn’t appear hurt on the play (in fact, he jumped up and tooled on Nathan Horton) and later said he didn’t think the hit was dirty.

Lucic didn’t agree with the call, saying “I felt like I made every effort to take him out laterally” and “you can see even him, his body rotating because I took him from the right side.” B’s head coach Claude Julien said much of the same, claiming that Lucic let up and Rinaldo turned at the last second.

No matter, though.

Shanahan opted to suspend Lucic anyway, and one wonders what would’ve happened if he didn’t. Looch ran afoul of the league earlier this season after charging Ryan Miller (though he ultimately avoided punishment) and holds repeat offender status thanks to a one-game suspension for crosschecking Maxim Lapierre in the face during the 2009 playoffs.

Throw in the fact other incidents involving Bruins went unpunished — Adam McQuaid’s knee on Nick Foligno, Brad Marchand’s slew-foot on Matt Niskanen — well, it was almost too much for the conspiracy theorists to handle. (With this out of the way they can now move onto other theories, like how the DaVinci Code foretold the recent concussion pandemic.)

Of note, this is just the second single-game suspension Shanahan’s issued this year. The other went to Buffalo’s Ville Leino for an elbow to the head of Philly’s Matt Read.

  1. terriers4 - Dec 19, 2011 at 2:59 PM

    I felt like it wasn’t THAT dirty of a hit.. I think 1 game suspension is fair

  2. pastabelly - Dec 19, 2011 at 3:01 PM

    Make up call for the hit on Miller to appease all who complain that the Bruins get preferential treatment. Too bad tonight’s game is against Montreal and he’ll miss it.

    • drewsylvania - Dec 19, 2011 at 4:46 PM

      Hit deserved a one-game suspension on its face.

  3. dcal4282 - Dec 19, 2011 at 3:04 PM

    Just to add to the conspiracy theories…..I see how it is, take a run at a Philly player and only get one game, if anything at all. More proof Shanahan and the league hate the Flyers.

    • xxshookonexx - Dec 19, 2011 at 3:28 PM

      to be fair, we all hate the flyers. And another thing……watching the Flyers game on Saturday…the fans started booing Chara when he had the puck…i thought Flyers fans were above that…very disappointing to see a fan base bring themselves to the level of Canadian teams’ fans

      • trigzter - Dec 19, 2011 at 3:36 PM

        after watching jagr get booed by washington fans whenever he touched the puck? every fan base boos, and no one outside of boston likes chara

      • hazlydose - Dec 19, 2011 at 4:59 PM

        Washington at one point was paying Jagr the biggest contract in hockey history. Do you think his failure to live up to that contract was the reason they boo?

  4. cliverush - Dec 19, 2011 at 3:43 PM

    If this warrants a one game suspension then hockey will begin to lose part of it’s viewing fan base at a time when they need to build it up. Many people are fed up with the NBA and the lack of defensive skill and play. This is a void the NHL has an opportunity to fill. Don’t blow it. If the Philly fans what to copy the Canadian fans remember this, “Don’t poke the Bear”.

    • drewsylvania - Dec 19, 2011 at 3:57 PM

      The ruling is consistent with his rulings on other players.

      • pastabelly - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:05 PM

        Who else has been suspended even one game for a hit like that? If they’re making this up as they’re going along, that’s bad precedent.

      • drewsylvania - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:39 PM

        According to Shanny, they gave him a game due to “previous warnings”.

      • hazlydose - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:48 PM

        Letang got two games for a very similar hit in October.

  5. stakex - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:02 PM

    To be clear I don’t like Lucic… and I am certainly not a Boston fan.

    However this hit doesn’t even seem worthy of a penelty, and Shanahans explination makes little sense. First things first Lucic did NOT hit Rinaldo in the numbers. He hit him in the side. It might have been the part of his side closest to his back… but it WAS a hit from the side. Not to mention Lucic didn’t even finish the hit. If you watch closely, Lucic kinda turns away from the hit as he makes contact and more or less just pushes Rinaldo into the board. Then Shanahan says Lucic drove Rinaldo “high and hard” into the boards. Yet Lucic’s hands hardly got much higher then the boards, and stayed bellow Rinaldo’s shoulders.

    I’m sorry but this hit was clean. Perhaps on the far end of the clean scale… but clean none the less. This seems to be nothing but a “crowd pleaser” to shut up all the people whinning about Boston and Lucic getting special treatment from the league. I hope thats all it is, becasue if hits like this are now suspendable hockey is in trouble.

    • stakex - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:05 PM

      Oh and I forgot to add… even Rinaldo was perfectly fine with the hit. So again, I fail to see how a suspension was warrented here.

    • drewsylvania - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:44 PM

      I’ve only seen the replay a couple times, but to me it looked like a hit to the back. Not malicious and not in the numbers, but a back hit nonetheless.

    • spiffy53 - Dec 19, 2011 at 7:28 PM

      because he had been warned by shannihan numerous times already. if he wants to try and be a goon, then face the music like all of the other goons when it comes to referee scrutiny.

  6. solador78 - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:11 PM

    How come Phaneuf didn’t get suspended for the exact same hit?

    • donfocker89 - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:22 PM

      Thank you. I feel like the Phaneuf boarding was worse than Lucic’s.

      • bcjim - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:31 PM

        He isn’t as filthy a goon as Lucic.

      • drewsylvania - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:42 PM

        @bcjim: Really? Phaneuf’s been cheapshotting for years.

  7. donfocker89 - Dec 19, 2011 at 5:23 PM

    Good to see Shanny did the right thing for suspending him a game for this hit on Miller….

  8. crusty14 - Dec 19, 2011 at 6:49 PM

    Firstly , I’m a bruins fan, but a hockey fan overall first…. I really didn’t think this hit was worthy of a suspension. I’d hate to see hockey getting all pussified like the NFL seems to be heading. Don’t get me wrong , I don’t want to see people getting gooned or permanently injured, but marginal type hits like this should be penalized on the ice and a power play given, not suspended guys left and right for seemingly minor infractions.

  9. danphipps01 - Dec 19, 2011 at 7:29 PM

    Meh. One game as a warning shot. This is less about the Rinaldo hit in specific and more about telling Lucic to get in line and stop testing his luck. He normally plays a very tough game, but treads just on the right side of the line. Lately, he’s pushed his luck a bit. The Miller hit, going by the rulebook, should’ve cost him some games. It’s absolutely clear – you can’t hit a goalie outside the crease anymore than inside, end o’ story. When Shanahan let it go, shit hit the fan in a lot of ways. This is his way of warning Lucic to keep it clean. I’m alright with it. If it had been multi-game I’d have had a problem. It was exactly on the line of clean or not, so any significant time lost would have been quite ridiculous. He DID try to let up a little.

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