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NHL suspends Dan Carcillo indefinitely for Tom Gilbert hit

Jan 3, 2012, 3:52 PM EDT

On the same day that Mark Spector published Dan Carcillo‘s comments about how he’s “processing” the way he delivers hits, the NHL decided he might need a little more time to work on that. The league has suspended the Chicago Blackhawks pest indefinitely for a check from behind on Edmonton Oilers defenseman Tom Gilbert.

Carcillo has already been suspended once this season, so Brendan Shanahan & Co. might give him more than the usual slap on the wrist. Take another look at the hit below and let us know what kind of punishment makes sense. Gilbert will miss the Oilers’ game against the Buffalo Sabres tonight, but his overall outlook seems somewhat optimistic.

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  1. sknut - Jan 3, 2012 at 3:58 PM

    I would say 6-8 games there was no need for a hit like that. The league needs to come down hard especially on repeat offenders. That is the only way some of these guys will learn.

    • supermav16 - Jan 4, 2012 at 1:22 AM

      Are 6 to 8 games enough? They suspended Matt Cooke for 14 last season(?) and it wasn’t any kind of deterrent. Head hits and hits from behind are still done regularly with no fear of punishment from the NHL. This is why these incidents are dominating the Hockey news almost weekly.

      • jpelle82 - Jan 4, 2012 at 10:15 AM

        cooke hasnt gotten anything but minor penalties since his suspension. must have been a good enough deterrent…considering he was the poster boy for dirty play in the nhl, he has become a saint since

  2. rarelyshaves - Jan 3, 2012 at 4:16 PM

    first off, stop embedding msnbc videos, they dont work or take forever to load. its 2012, throw a search phrase into youtube

    second of all, im going to go to bat for carcillo here. the only thing wrong with that hit is he was too excited and hit him far off the boards and before touching the puck. had he given it a half second more, it would have been a nice hit to maintain offensive zone presence.

    cue the whiners – this is montreal after all

    watch the video, its not like gilbert didnt know he was there

  3. comeonnowguys - Jan 3, 2012 at 4:40 PM

    Indefinitely? After fellow repeat offender and all around assbag Torres only gets two days? Carcillo obviously needs more than a few games, but man, that’s a glaring lack of consistency.

    • hockeyfan2010 - Jan 3, 2012 at 4:59 PM

      Agreed. This hit is most definitely suspension-worthy, however, how is what Torres has done THREE TIMES in his last three games any different than this? It’s not, they were all illegal hits. If you’re going to suspend Carcillo indefinitely, who is a repeat offender just like Torres, then Torres should be at least met with the same punishment.

      Congratulations, NHL, you’ve managed to show that you are either a) showing preferential treatment to certain players / teams or b) you have absolutely no idea what you are doing.

      • cmdaw - Jan 3, 2012 at 7:04 PM

        What this article doesn’t spell out, but most NHL fans who pay attention to discipline probably already know, is that it’s actually indefinitely pending hearing. Likely this hearing is going to be face to face, not over the phone. It’s pretty clear that they intend to chew Carcillo out pretty hard.

      • tommytd - Jan 3, 2012 at 7:43 PM

        The latter no doubt, especially with Bettman at the helm.

      • danphipps01 - Jan 3, 2012 at 7:50 PM

        And if they had done so to Torres too, we’d be substantially more happy with the overall direction taken lately. Don’t get me wrong, nuking Carcillo for three weeks would put a smile on my face, but then I’d remember Torres dropped three dirty hits in a week and lost $2500 and two games for his trouble and go back to grimacing at how awful Shanahan is at his job.

  4. imleftcoast - Jan 3, 2012 at 4:55 PM

    I think it would be a strong statement if he got five games. I agree that it’s more of a hockey play than Torres’ two game suspension hit, but I don’t think Gilbert could protect himself and he ended up hurt.

  5. imryanmac - Jan 3, 2012 at 5:04 PM

    I think this hit is ugly. But the player who is being hit, at times and especially here, is putting himself into the position that makes a typically hard hit suddenly become a violent-suspension worthy hit. Am I wrong here? The guy slams on the brakes 5 feet from the boards? He knew Carcillo was right behind him wtf.

    • rarelyshaves - Jan 3, 2012 at 5:31 PM

      thats exactly my point. everyone is just all on the carcillo hater wagon and not even looking at the context.

      dan has played a clean season and upped his game. he had no reason to throw a hit this ugly, its purely circumstantial.

      • homelanddefense - Jan 4, 2012 at 9:49 AM

        I actually hate Carcillo but I agree with you. The guy jams on teh brakes in front of him and you can see on the vid that Carcillo’s hands are in the front of Gilbert. The hit looked ugly, but not excessively dirty.

  6. capsrockva - Jan 3, 2012 at 5:36 PM

    He is a dirty player. Was that in Philly and still is. I agree the suspension was warranted & since he is a repeat offender, that’s why it is indefinite

  7. Eric - Jan 3, 2012 at 5:46 PM

    All you have to do is look at the injuries due to hits in the various leagues and understand this needs to stop. Work as an official in a youth/high school level game with checking and know this kind of hit needs to stop. Look at what happened to the player in Minnesota just a few days ago and know this needs to stop. The NHL is one of the leagues that sets the tone for the rest of hockey, and this type of play has no place. None. Get it out of the league. Out. Done.

  8. stakex - Jan 3, 2012 at 6:31 PM

    Someone please explain to me whats wrong with that hit that requires suspension at all. Its not from behind at the point of contact (Gilbert turns away from Carcillo a little as hes falling into the boards), Carcillo doesn’t leave his feet, and hell…. Carcillo doesn’t even really finish the check as hard as he could have. Was it perhaps interference? Possibly since the Gilbert hadn’t played the puck yet, but thats the worst I could see from this… a 2 minute call for interference. Other then that this just seems like a play in which Gilbert made an idiotic play of slamming on the break a few feet from the boards, thus leaving himself in a vulnerable spot.

    Look, just because someone gets hurt on a big hit does not mean its time to start screaming suspension, even when a d-bag like Carcillo is the one throwing the hit. If this keeps up, they might as well just ban contact in hockey and play with a foam puck.

    • Eric - Jan 3, 2012 at 6:57 PM

      Here’s why – what’s the purpose of a check? It is to separate a player from the puck to cause a change in possession. Merriam-Webster defines it as “a blocking of an opposing player with the body.” USA Hockey defines it as, “Using the hip or shoulder to impede the progress of an opponent who has the puck.” What was the purpose here? How does a hit like that help him gain possession of the puck?

      That’s what I’m tired of in hockey. The unnecessary and excessive contact. Players continue to think this kind of play is OK at all levels, and players are going to continue to get hurt unnecessarily unless we start penalizing players for this. You don’t need to take out contact/checking. You are not going to eliminate injuries. But this stupid play has no place at any level.

      FYI – Boarding in the NHL (and similarly in most other rule books) is defined as, “A boarding penalty shall be imposed on any player who checks an opponent in such a manner that causes the opponent to be thrown violently in the boards.” It goes further to state, ‘There is an enormous amount of judgment involved in the application of this rule by the Referees. The onus is on the player applying the check to ensure his opponent is not in a vulnerable position and if so, he must avoid the contact.” Kind of fits here, don’t you think?

    • taytay099 - Jan 4, 2012 at 5:14 AM

      Because that play was reckless. Gilbert hasn’t even reached the puck yet so that’s already interference, but the fact that Carcillo throws Gilbert awkwardly into the boards while Gilbert is off balance and trying to turn to get behind the net at high speed is extremely dangerous and should always be a suspension. Carcillo could have just used his body position to angle Gilbert off the puck, but he threw this hit instead. Plus Gilbert was injured and Carcillo is a repeat offender doesn’t help him escape suspension.

  9. sizzle299 - Jan 3, 2012 at 7:29 PM

    Interesting that when he was a Flyer and hit guys like this everyone was abuzz typical Flyers trashing……but when the dirty players are on other teams its the player not the team.

  10. xxshookonexx - Jan 4, 2012 at 8:54 AM

    The suspension of Carcillo will, in essence, curb Torres’ stupidity because Torres has to know…..any idiot would realize, that one more wrong hit or dirty play will end up with this same kind of discipline. Shanahan is setting the precedent for repeat offenders from here on out since the 1-3 game suspensions aren’t cutting it.

    • comeonnowguys - Jan 4, 2012 at 9:50 AM

      They’re going to drop the hammer on Carcillo for something that, while dangerous and suspension worthy, was much closer to an actual hockey play than what Torres did, in hopes of sending a message to Torres?

      That is so backwards. They had the opportunity to convey this directly to Torres in response to Torres something actually did. Instead, they gave him two games.

      Between the two, which guy do you think is more likely to goon it up first?

      • xxshookonexx - Jan 4, 2012 at 12:49 PM

        No, i actually believe he blew it with Torres and the 2 game suspension and realized it after the fact thus the Carcillo indefinite suspension to send a message to repeat offenders

  11. hwentworth - Jan 4, 2012 at 9:52 AM

    Sorry guys, I just don’t see it. It was a bad hit, but I don’t get why it’s “SUSPENDED INDEFINITELY” worthy. He didn’t McSorley the guy.

    This is a pure case of a notorious enforcer getting a larger penalty because he’s the guy that’s supposed to get the larger penalty.

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