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Dirty hits? Ovechkin’s charge on Michalek and Michalek’s elbow to Hendricks

Jan 22, 2012, 4:33 PM EDT

Alex Ovechkin played a huge part in today’s game for Washington in spite of the Caps losing 4-3 in overtime. Ovechkin had a goal and two assists factoring in on all of Washington’s goals. If you asked Pens fans, however, they’d tell you that Ovechkin maybe shouldn’t have been in the game at all thanks to his hit on Zbynek Michalek in the second period.

Ovechkin appeared to leave his feet when hitting Michalek in the corner. Making matters worse he appeared to hit Michalek in the head. Have a look.

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Of course, for all the yelling from Pens fans about that, Michalek was no saint himself. Michalek, shortly after getting rung up by Ovechkin, delivered a highly dubious hit of his own to Capitals forward Matt Hendricks.

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Michalek got two minutes for elbowing on the play and perhaps deserved more. Could both of these hits wind up on Brendan Shanahan’s radar? Possibly.

Ovechkin has a previous record of being suspended while Michalek’s elbow from behind connected with Hendricks’ head. Any blows to the head are going to get looked at closer and to see Shanahan step in on either of these plays won’t be surprising.

  1. nogoodell - Jan 22, 2012 at 5:01 PM

    How’s Crosby play?

    • maxtalbot25 - Jan 22, 2012 at 5:15 PM

      Spoken like a very small person with nothing real to say, nogoodell. If that;s your intention, good job!

  2. capsrockva - Jan 22, 2012 at 5:19 PM

    you are an idiot. Crosby hasn’t played since 12/5. He went to CA to check with a another doctor.

  3. salmon90 - Jan 22, 2012 at 5:22 PM

    Sucks for my hockey pool but Ovie has gotta sit for that one. Off his feet – shot to the head – no brainer.

    • Kristenaux - Jan 22, 2012 at 6:38 PM

      I agree. While I enjoy watching Ovie play & don’t like to see *anyone* playing this way. He left his feet pure & simple. The Pens may have given as good as they got in the long run, but two wrongs DO NOT make a right! So guys…are we ever going to learn anything?

      • stakex - Jan 22, 2012 at 11:35 PM

        Leaving your feet is NOT grounds for suspension most of the time. Its generaly a two minute penelty, and you are in fact allowed to leave your feet as your making contact. If you can tell from the video that Ovechkins skates are off the ice before he makes contact you have much better eyes then I do….

  4. buffalomafia - Jan 22, 2012 at 5:22 PM

    It seems like this year every time a player gets hit he gets hurt?

  5. maxtalbot25 - Jan 22, 2012 at 5:25 PM

    Both hit’s deserve punishment. I would expect Ovechkin, being a repeat offender, to have a larger penalty than Michalek.But, the NHL usually defers to his celebrity status, so I doubt this will happen.

    • kotteintheslot - Jan 22, 2012 at 6:37 PM

      i agree that they both need to be suspended, but if you ask me ovechkin was out of control but michalek hit hendricks looking at the numbers. both were bad plays but i think the hit from behind is always worse.

  6. xxshookonexx - Jan 22, 2012 at 6:46 PM

    Iffy my @$$, Ovie needs to be suspended, left his feet and targeted the head. I’m starting to think that Ovie is the Caps designated “rat”…the number of knee to knee hits and checks while leaving his feet is getting very Kaleta like

    • babykaby - Jan 28, 2012 at 4:21 AM

      Ovechkin hasn’t been disciplined for two years, but still got three games. He is NOT a dirty player. The guy wasn’t even hurt. So, Michalek is pissed because of the hit, give a retalitory hit on Hendricks to the head, from behind, and doesn’t get anything. Bourgue takes Backstrom out with a concussion and gets only five games after having been disciplined mere games earlier. For the life of me I can’t see any consistency in the way these suspensions are being determined. Why in the Hell didn’t Michalek get at the very least a game suspension. Oh, yeah, he’s a Pen. If your a Penguin, you’re off limits. Sorry, I forgot.

  7. AppealToReason - Jan 22, 2012 at 8:02 PM

    Ovie won’t get much of a suspension if any with the ASG coming up and only one game before it. Can’t have him miss that.

  8. killerpgh - Jan 22, 2012 at 8:20 PM

    If Ovechkin got suspended 2 or more games would he be allowed to play in the All-Star game? It makes sense to me that a suspended player should not be allowed to play in the A.S.G. So I say no way Shanny suspends AO even though he should. And it would be very hard to justify suspending a repeat offender only 1 game. AO has been fined and suspended in the past for reckless plays. But Shanny is a joke anyways…. Throws the book at some players. Nothing to other players for the same thing.

    As for Michalek hits I’m not sure on. I wouldn’t be surprised either way. I’m leading towards nothing more than a fine if that. Looked like his forearm first hits hit name plate then rides up his back/neck to behind his head. But either way it was from behind. But I’m a Pens fans.

    • stakex - Jan 22, 2012 at 11:31 PM

      I don’t know how you could possibly say Ovechkin should def be suspended, and then waffle about the Michalek hit. I guess its becaue, as you said, your a Pens fan. As a Rangers fan that doesn’t care for either team, let me tell you… the Michalek hit was far worse. Not to mention it hits several areas in which the league is cracking down such as being from behind, targeted the head, head was the principle point of contact on a defenseless player. This is a no brainer two game suspension.

      • killerpgh - Jan 23, 2012 at 1:29 PM

        One is a repeat offender. One is not.

    • baywatchboy - Jan 23, 2012 at 1:45 PM

      Suspended players can play in the All-Star game.

  9. kantnockdahustle89 - Jan 22, 2012 at 9:34 PM

    1 game for Ovi thats it.

  10. stakex - Jan 22, 2012 at 11:27 PM

    Ovechkin won’t be suspended for this hit, and there are three reasons:

    1. A player is allowed to leave his feet a little bit AFTER making contact (Shanahan has confirmed this in a previous suspension explination). While its very very close, Ovechkins one skate does not appear to be off the ice until after he first makes contact.

    2. While Ovechkin does make contact to the head, its NOT the principle point of contact which is a requirement for suspension under Rule 48. Watch the play in slow motion from the side angle and you can clearly see he makes contact with the shoulder first.

    3. The hit also does not hit other check marks for a suspension such as a blind side hit, injury on the play, or hit on a defensless player. There is also no clear intent to target the head.

    So sticking strickly to the rules, this hit does not qualify for a suspension. I know Pens fans don’t want to hear that since Michalek will definatly be suspended at least a couple games, but thats just how it is. You ARE allowed to make contact with the head so long as its not the principle point of contact, and its not on this hit. It was close, and this really should have been a penelty… but I just don’t see a suspension here. Perhaps a fine to keep the Pens fans from rioting, but nothing more.

    There is also another, less “by the rules” angle to this whole thing: Suspending Ovechkin before the All-Star game is something the league simply will not do. I don’t believe the hit to be suspendable, but even if it was, the league probably wouldn’t do anything with the ASG coming up.

    • paperlions - Jan 23, 2012 at 7:49 AM

      I don’t know if he will or should get suspended or not; but what is clear from the video is that he leaves both he feet before contact and that the head is the primary (nearly the only) point of contact. Those facts are particularly clear from the first camera angle, but from the side, it is clear that he was off his skates before contact and that about the only part of the body he touched was the head with maybe a little incidental shoulder.

    • spiffy53 - Jan 23, 2012 at 8:28 AM

      stakex, you could have written War and Peace and you would still be wrong. he left his feet beforehand. period. the result of the head getting hit from this illegal charge (42.1 Charging – A minor or major penalty shall be imposed on a player who skates or jumps into, or charges an opponent in any manner) coupled with previous trangressions will get him suspended.

  11. pittsburghpoonslayer - Jan 23, 2012 at 7:32 AM

    ovenchkin sucks, he wishes he was malkin. suspend him for the rest of the year hes teash

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