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Is this suspension worthy? Shaw slams goalie Mike Smith

Apr 15, 2012, 12:29 AM EDT

Mike Smith went behind his net to play the puck. Andrew Shaw ran into him at full force and appeared to make contact with his head. Beyond that, I think it’s best if you see the clip for yourself before I provide any further commentary.

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Mike Smith didn’t even go to a quiet room under the suspicion of a concussion, so Brendan Shanahan will probably factor that into his decision. However, Shaw did get five minutes for charging and a game misconduct.

The cynic will say that Smith took a dive to try and make Shaw’s punishment harsher. After the hit, Chicago Sun-Times writer Adam Jahns tweeted, “How many people think Mike Smith was embellishing?”

Personally, I’m of the belief that what happens after a hit isn’t as important as the hit itself. Intent and whether or not the player was injured, should – in my mind – take a backseat to whether or not the hit was illegal and dangerous. That being said, having seen the hit, my gut feeling is there won’t be a suspension. What do you think?

  1. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Apr 15, 2012 at 12:37 AM

    If Lucic wasn’t suspended then I don’t see it happening to Shaw, but who knows?

    • tarotsujimoto74 - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:10 AM

      That’s what I think. Shaw was mainly just trying to block the pass along the glass. Smith really leaning into his pass and Shaw starting to come off the boards is what led to the collision. 2 minutes was a suitable penalty. The major and misconduct were already too much punishment.

    • solador78 - Apr 15, 2012 at 12:37 PM

      What are you talking about?

      Tootoo got 2 games for Lucic’s hit on Miller.

  2. bcisleman - Apr 15, 2012 at 1:01 AM

    Ridiculous comment by Jahns. Smith wasn’t expecting to get hit and his response was clearly involuntary. Shaw may not get a suspension, but he should. But then Weber should have as well.

  3. Doesnotmatter - Apr 15, 2012 at 1:10 AM

    Call me a cynic then. There is a reason he didn’t go to the quiet room. He didn’t have to. He was doing just fine and he knew it. And I am not a Blackhawk fan.
    Plus, this is Mike Smith, a goalie who routinely tries to fight the biggest forwards on the opposing team. Gimme a break. Nice diving and flopping, Mike.

  4. comeonnowguys - Apr 15, 2012 at 1:19 AM

    Of course you’re going to get people saying he embellished. He was shaken up, they were calling for the backup, he’s shook up. Come back from break, and it looks like he’s going to leave the game.

    Then the refs announce the misconduct and the 5-minute. Helmet back on, and he’s good to go and continues to not miss a beat.

    I’d be surprised if he wasn’t at least a little wonky right after the hit, but man…

    Anyway, Shaw got the five and the hook, an additional game or two to boot when the guy never left the game?

    Who knows. Shanahan’s all over the place.

    • comeonnowguys - Apr 15, 2012 at 1:21 AM

      Speaking of Smith, was there a different angle of that Toews goalie interference earlier in the game? It looks like Smith actually lunged out at him while he passed the net.

  5. creasemasta41 - Apr 15, 2012 at 3:40 AM

    Shanahan won’t have the balls to suspend him in the playoffs. At most it’ll be a meaningless $2500 fine again

    • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Apr 15, 2012 at 8:19 AM

      Since he doesn’t deserve a suspension, I’d suggest it might take bigger balls not to hand one out.

      • creasemasta41 - Apr 15, 2012 at 1:43 PM

        It was a clear elbow to the head, it doesnt matter that he stayed in the game that couldve easily been a concussion. Say what you want about intent, i dont think shaw meant to do it, but he still went in with a high elbow, just the thing shanahan supposedly wants to get rid of. If he truely wants to eliminate elbows to the head he’ll give at least a game.

      • creasemasta41 - Apr 15, 2012 at 1:47 PM

        My apologies, i hadnt watched the overhead replay that was a shoulder not an elbow, not as bad but still deserving of a 1 game suspension thanks to the undeniable head contact. And dont even say anything about Smith flopping thats irrelevant because there was still contact

      • Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Apr 15, 2012 at 4:11 PM

        Perhaps in the future you’ll stick to arguing about plays you’ve actually seen. It’s generally a good policy.

  6. phillyphever - Apr 15, 2012 at 8:12 AM

    No suspension or fine. Shaw shouldn’t have gotten a game anyway. Smith flopped on that one (excellent sell job BTW Mike). Too bad karma kicked his ass when the Hawks tied it up late and won in OT.

  7. Chip Caray's Eyebrows - Apr 15, 2012 at 8:26 AM

    I couldn’t have complained too much if Shaw had taken a minor penalty on the play. We all know at this point you can’t put yourself in a position to hit the goalie. It’s generally going to land you in the box or worse. That doesn’t even mean I think he meant to hit Smith, but he probably meant to chase the puck into the trapezoid when the goalie was clearly back there making a play on the puck. It was risky.

    But after seeing the play ad nauseum, I still don’t know why the officials felt it worthy of a game misconduct. Are they able to watch a replay of the play, or do they have to go off of whatever they happened to see? If so, my guess is they were basing their punishment on Smith’s reaction and on a hit that probably looks A LOT worse when you don’t see the entire play from start to finish. If you see the entire play, I don’t know how you can realistically infer that Shaw meant to go in there and nail Smith in the head. Maybe he did, but I don’t see much evidence to support such an assertion.

    So all this talk about Shaw being suspended … I hope it just ends up being talk and nothing else. It just doesn’t seem like he deserves it. We’ve seen more malicious plays (Shea Weber) go unsuspended, after all.

  8. dougr42 - Apr 15, 2012 at 8:55 AM

    Can we get off the flop/dive and get back to the intent?

    To me, it looks like Shaw was trying to avoid it but instead of throwing himself into the boards, he turned a bit thus causing his shoulder to make primary contact with Smith’s head. If he hadn’t turned it would have just been full on body contact.

    No intent, no injury, no suspension. ‘Nuff said.

    • comeonnowguys - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:47 AM

      The problem is that lately, the result seems to have more impact than the intent, so you get 50 percent more show with every hit! Everything must go!

  9. kingjoe1 - Apr 15, 2012 at 9:10 AM

    Smith didn’t flop, he got hit very hard and probably should been forced to the lockerroom. However I don’t think Shaw intentionally hit in the head. Shaw did try to be cute about cutting around the back of the net and probably was trying to give Smith a bit of a wake up call. If this was regular season 1 game suspension, but this is the playoffs so no suspension.

    …based on NHL rules he should be suspended.

  10. tommytd - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:34 AM

    Just my opinion: Coaches are smart guys. If they can get opposition players ejected, that becomes a strategic part of their approach. Send all your guys to the Vancouver School Of Flopping,Diving & Whining and try to draw game misconducts on the opposition. V perfected the art years ago and the rest of the league is catching on.

    • interiorfan - Apr 15, 2012 at 1:05 PM

      Yeah, that was quite a flop and dive Daniel Sedin made when Duncan Keith elbowed him in the face. Vancouver players don’t flop any more than prima donnas on other NHL teams. They’re all starting to act like soccer players. Tough to see in a great sport like hockey.

  11. chiadam - Apr 15, 2012 at 10:59 AM

    And the team that brought you the blatant faceoff cheat (have a winger cheat while taking the draw, insert center if winger is tossed) proudly presents: The Goalie Flop! By my count, the officials have GIFTED Arizona three goals now. The offsides that wasn’t in game one, the interference call on Toews for getting hit by the goalie, and a staggering major / misconduct for not being able to leap over the goalie that left his net with his head down. Where the **** was Shaw supposed to go? He tried to avoid him and could not. Luckily, the FIFA-ish goalie completely recovered once Shaw was tossed.

    • esracerx46 - Apr 15, 2012 at 8:37 PM

      You forgot the too many men on the ice penalty the Yotes should have gotten but didnt then 15 seconds later the hawks give up a goal. Only advice I could give to Shaw, just dont go there. I think its BS a goalie is treated like a Quarterback. If you play the puck outside your crease, you can score a goal, you can make an assist…you should be able to get hit.

  12. t16rich - Apr 15, 2012 at 11:03 AM

    I think we should change the rule to be like box lacrosse, and if a goalie wants to play the puck outside of his crease area, he is free game to be hit just like any other player who wants to play the puck.

    • wretchu - Apr 15, 2012 at 12:14 PM

      The call was charging, not goaltender interference. It would’ve been a penalty either way. You can’t go in full speed at a guy and hit him in the head. Was that Shaw’s intent? I don’t think so. But the fact that he wasn’t necessarily trying to take out Smith doesn’t mean that it’s not a penalty either.

      • t16rich - Apr 15, 2012 at 12:27 PM

        Ya good call, would be a penalty even if my rule was in place. My main point was focused at goalies in general, like when Marty Turco used to handle the puck at the blueline, he should be free game to be hit.

  13. wretchu - Apr 15, 2012 at 12:19 PM

    Considering Weber only got a fine for trying to shove a guy’s face through the glass, I don’t think Shanny can justify any suspension this playoffs, honestly. I won’t be surprised if he eventually does, but it’ll all be BS. They need to separate the result from the action and the intent. If the intent is there to injure, they should be gone. You can’t wait until someone like a Mike Smith or a Sydney Crosby is gone for the entirety of the playoffs to punish someone. If a player is obviously intentionally trying to hurt people, they need to sit before they accomplish their goal, not after.

    All that said, this wouldn’t deserve a suspension either way. It was an unfortunate accident. I don’t think Shaw was trying to take Smith out and seemed to by at least trying to avoid contact. He should’ve been penalized because it was still a dangerous play, but suspension would be excessive.

  14. hockinj25 - Apr 15, 2012 at 12:23 PM

    People saying that he flopped have obviously never been hit in the head with a helmet. It hurts. The goalie masks move around a lot and don’t do a great job protecting hits like that. He deserved to get kicked out but no suspension.

  15. libuchamach - Apr 15, 2012 at 12:53 PM

    Here’s what I think of the situation:
    Shaw was going hard towards behind the net to try and win that puck or block it as Smith was trying to play it. He probably went in a little faster then he should have cause lets be real, even if he didn’t have the intent to hit him which I don’t think he did, players should know to be careful when they are challenging the goaltender cause if there is any contact, the goaltender will win the battle and sympathy of the refs every time. It was unfortunate that he got injured. Penalty: yes. Misconduct? I don’t think so. Suspension? I hope not if Weber is still skating a free man.

    • shadows in bloom - Apr 15, 2012 at 5:05 PM

      yeah, he probably should have pulled up knowing how much they try and over-protect the goalies but i definitely don’t think he intended it to go like that and smith was DEFINITELY embellishing! i don’t think shannie will suspend him

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