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Video: Foligno goes low on Phaneuf, Leafs captain responds

Jan 17, 2012, 9:13 PM EDT

The Battle of Ontario is alive and well. In Ottawa’s game in Toronto, Senators forward Nick Foligno delivered a low check to Leafs captain Dion Phaneuf in the same mold of Brad Marchand’s check on Sami Salo and Evgeni Malkin’s low check on Vinny Lecavalier. We can debate the legality of all three hits, but the fact remains that the hip check is returning to the game. In some cases, the low hip check.

For the record, Foligno received a two-minute penalty on the play.

How long before the new buzzword in the NHL is “low bridge?” Take a look for yourself at Foligno’s handiwork:

Whether any of these are legal hits or not, the reaction from the opponent was the same: anger. The Canucks were upset with Marchand’s low check on Salo that earned the Bruins’ forward a five-game suspension. Vinny Lecavalier was fuming after Malkin up-ended him with a low hit late in the Pens victory over the Lightning over the weekend. And Dion Phaneuf? He wasn’t happy about an opponent going low either.

So what did Phaneuf do? He waited until the right opportunity, lined Foligno up for a check of his own, and then dropped the gloves with the willing combatant. For fans who want the players to police themselves and “handle it on the ice,” this is exactly the kind of response they’d expect.

Take a look at the response:

  1. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 17, 2012 at 9:26 PM

    Foligo’s a rat but at least he was willing to drop his gloves and take his medicine.

    • madtolive5 - Jan 17, 2012 at 9:43 PM

      next time lose the visor

  2. lovesthebj - Jan 17, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    Foligno’s game is to grind and get nasty, and he’s having a breakout year. I thought Phaneuf left his feet before the hit, not sure what he hoped would happen. And I thought Foligno gave as good as he got with the much bigger defenseman.

  3. feelnuclear - Jan 17, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    I hate Malkin as much as the next guy, but his “hit” on Lecavalier wasn’t even a hit. That was a true dodging of Lecavalier’s incoming hit. I thought that Lecavalier’s reaction was total bullshit, the result of so much frustration boiling over.

  4. ikillchicken - Jan 17, 2012 at 9:53 PM

    Was this a bad hit? I’m honestly not sure. Ideally you’d like to see a guy make contact squarely with the guy’s hip and this is probably more of a mid to upper thigh hit. I don’t think I’d call it dirty. You have to be getting down toward the knee before it’s really a low bridge. He’s probably at least pushing his luck though here.

    • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 17, 2012 at 11:03 PM

      I’d say it’s more interference than clipping.

  5. elguapo12 - Jan 17, 2012 at 10:25 PM

    I’m surprised Kessel didn’t fall over from the blowback caused by Phaneuf’s humiliating windmill.

    What a mess the Leafs are. Love it.

    • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 17, 2012 at 10:56 PM

      Enjoy it while you can. It’s only 3 games, and Anderson stole this one. Not like the Sens have ever lost 3 straight or anything.

      Maybe next game we’ll just have some guys sit on Anderson while we put the puck in the net. I didn’t even know that was allowed until I saw Spez’s goal but apparently it is.

  6. speedstickmusk - Jan 18, 2012 at 1:09 AM

    What is with you NBC people? Between you and the 2 knuckleheads Milbury and Jones, you have to be the only 3 who think Malkin “low-bridged” Lecavalier. How many times do you have to see that Malkin was already in the corner with Vinny approaching him to make a hit and Malkin dodged him. If you ever watch Malkin, he’s tried to avoid hits in the past the same way. Not once was the term “low bridge” ever used and it should be used in this case either. Maybe start actually watching the games, huh?

    • dwil12 - Jan 18, 2012 at 3:46 AM

      just because malkin is a pussy doesnt make what he did ok. he needs to grow up and take a hit once in a while. women play hockey more physical than malkin

      • icedog97 - Jan 18, 2012 at 2:52 PM

        Watch the play again Einstien…

        Malkin has the puck…by dodging the check, he was able to control the puck long enough to get it around the boards to his teammate.

        I guess, instead, so as not to potentially injure Lecavalier’s pride, Malking should have taken the hit and not worried about whether or not he lost possession of the puck?

        It’s moronic that NBC even considers this a ‘hit’ by Malkin and even more moronic that any player, ex player, coach or fan would say a player should take a hit – if in the process of avoiding it – he is trying to keep the puck possession for his team…especially in his OWN ZONE!!!

        Say what you want about whatever Malkin may have done in the past…there is nothing wrong with what he did here…except maybe if you are Lecavalier and your ergo is bruised…

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Jan 18, 2012 at 3:03 PM

        This play is real soft on Malkin’s part, eh dwill12?

  7. speedstickmusk - Jan 18, 2012 at 1:10 AM

    “shouldn’t” be used….

  8. taytay099 - Jan 18, 2012 at 3:19 AM

    I think it was a good hip check, but it is clearly interference. Don’t think it’s clipping or very comparable to Marchand’s low hit or Malkin’s dodged check. The only thing those 3 have in common is they upset their opponents.

  9. icedog97 - Jan 18, 2012 at 7:32 AM

    I used to come here to read hockey news…but now there is less and less every day.

    Malkin didn’t even touch Vinny, did he? Don’t you have to hit a guy to check him?

    Vinny goes for check…Malkin ducks…Vinny checks the boards. Result…Vinny has a bruised ego and stupid people think Malkin did something wrong.

    Seriously…you guys are IDIOTS!


  10. cshearing - Jan 18, 2012 at 8:03 AM

    Foligno’s hit was not clipping. He hit the upper thigh of Phaneuf, not the knee like in the Marchand hit. It should have maybe been an interference penalty, but there will be no suspension.

    These are not debates over what is okay. That is already ratified in the rulebook. I’m not sure where this confusion is coming from.

  11. jpelle82 - Jan 18, 2012 at 8:34 AM

    at least foligno answered the bell later…i liked how foligno motioned to him to get up after phaneuf laid there waiting for the whistle.

  12. odj810 - Jan 18, 2012 at 9:01 AM

    don’t think its a dirty hit, but i don’t think you can call marchands hit disgustingly dirty and this one completely clean. We’re talking about a difference in 2 inches of height on the players. one player got hit in the top of hte hip the other at the bottom of the hip

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