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Shanahan suspends Shaw three games for charging Smith…but if Smith was injured, Shaw would’ve been done for the series

Apr 17, 2012, 3:23 PM EDT

After a lengthy and drawn-out procedure, NHL discipline czar Brendan Shanahan ruled Blackhawks forward Andrew Shaw will be suspended three games for charging Phoenix goalie Mike Smith during Saturday’s 3-2 overtime victory.

First, the video explanation:

Then this, from TSN’s Darren Dreger:


This scenario is sure to draw controversy, given the following:

— After Shaw was given a five-minute charging major and game misconduct, Smith returned to and finished Saturday’s game.

— The suspension was announced roughly six hours prior to Game 3. Shaw practiced with the ‘Hawks this morning.

— Phoenix originally had Smith listed as a game time decision for this evening.

This is the fifth suspension Shanahan’s issued during the opening round of the playoffs, eclipsing last year’s first-round total of three (when Colin Campbell was in charge of discipline.)

It also matches the longest suspension Shanahan has issued this postseason, on par with the three-gamer given to Rangers forward Carl Hagelin for elbowing Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson.

  1. balewsquare - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:24 PM

    Shaw should’ve just grabbed Smith’s head and smashed it in to the glass…

    • wingsdjy - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:34 PM

      I’m completely baffled by all of this. Maybe it’d help if Shanahan put out videos for instances where fines (but not suspensions) are issued. I’d like to understand his ‘logic’.

      • hawkeytown - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:02 PM

        …”the video clearly shows that the dart lands in the area marked ‘3 games'”

      • michiganhockey11 - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:07 PM

        Darn right about the dart board. That’s the greatest analogy I’ve heard.

    • michiganhockey11 - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:04 PM

      So with that logic, if Zetterberg would have gotten hurt, Weber would be done with their series?

    • mathpete13 - Apr 17, 2012 at 5:07 PM

      At least then he would have had a reason to roll around on the ice like a little girl…

    • nannern - Apr 18, 2012 at 4:54 PM

      And the Oscar winning goalie Smith came out of his hole to attack a Blackhawks player. What a sleezy snake. Does anyone believe his act on the ice? Then he gets right up ready to play. Then he comes out of his hole to attack a BLACKHAWK. CRAWFORD CAME OUT TO THE BLUE LINE AND GAVE A MESSAGE–THERE IS NO ROOM IN THE NHL FOR LIERS AND GOALIES WHO HAVE no INTERGRITY. TtHEY ARE RUINING THE GAME.sMITH AND tORRES HAVE NO CLASS AND THEY SHOULD BE KICKED OUT OF THIS WONDERFUL GAME. tHEY DO NOT BELONG IN THIS GAME. TtHEY ARE LOSERS AND DISGUSTING PEOPLE WHO ARE READY TO kill!!

  2. 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:25 PM

    Is it even worth debating whether or not this whole discipline process makes no sense anymore?

    • govtminion - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:27 PM

      Hard to debate the obvious. There’s no logic to this anymore. It’s a dartboard or something.

      • 1943mrmojorisin1971 - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:31 PM

        I will continue to post this until Shanny proves this isn’t what his decision-making system process is. And because it’s too damn funny.

      • govtminion - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:32 PM

        Oh my god, I was just trying to find this exact clip- you’re a genius, THANK YOU!!!

      • bennywisest - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:51 PM

        I laugh everytime that is posted.

  3. comeonnowguys - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:27 PM

    So… three games if he wasn’t injured, four if he was?

    It’s a good thing officiating has been terrible across the board.

    Otherwise, between this, the too many men, and Smith nailing Toews to get an interference, that whole “NHL wants the Phoenix to advance to make it a more appetizing sale” crowd wouldn’t look as bat-crap crazy as it should.

  4. davidpcoelho - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:28 PM

    I just don’t get it anymore…when is the player that is putting himself in these dangerous positions going to be held liable?

    • miketoasty - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:38 PM

      How did he put himself in a dangerous position? Are you saying that goalies shouldn’t go back to stop pucks? Shaw had from the top of the faceoff circle, to Smith, to stop. That is completely on Shaw.

      • davidpcoelho - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:47 PM

        He got hit seconds after getting rid of the puck and had his head down the entire time. You have to know what is around you and prepare to be hit. They are not NFL QBs.

        The lane was pretty much blocked. If he gets hit there, it is because he put himself in that spot.

  5. mehetmet - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:32 PM

    Goalies look for contact. They go behind the net and stand in the middle giving the skater no outlet but to hit him. If skater goes net, goalie is “trying to get back” if skater goes boards goalie is “playing the puck”.

    Completely accidental hit on Shaw’s part, its not his shoulder its his head, I doubt he wanted a head to head collision with the goalie.

    This inconsistency makes me not want to watch the NHL anymore

  6. balewsquare - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:32 PM

    First off, I have an actual question: What is the difference between goaltender charging and interference?

    Ok, a few things I don’t like about this:

    -Smith writhing in pain until Shaw’s penalty is upped (that the refs were discussing it and waiting for injury was hideous to watch) from 2 to 5 min and a game misconduct

    -Smith then going on to finish the game, without being tested for a concussion, and stating after the game that he is “100%”

    -PHX calling Smith a game time decision today. Shaw gets suspended, and is good to go.

    -According to Shanahan’s equation, this equals 12 regular season games???

    • jasol20 - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:38 PM

      “According to Shanahan’s equation, this equals 12 regular season games???”

      He says one playoff game is equivalent to 4 regular season games. So yes, Shaw essentially gets the playoff equivalent of a 12-game suspension. For that hit? Never mind the fact that I don’t get it…there’s just nothing to get anymore.

      • barkar942 - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:29 PM

        And Hagelin got these same “12” games equivalent for something that deserved one. Alfredson did move and duck just before he got hit which seemed to make Hags reach to make contact which then got Alfie in the helmet. One game, fine. Two games, pushing it, but three was a joke, especially when Carkner only got one for what should have been ruled intent to injure!

  7. dadeojax - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:33 PM

    What BS! He isn’t a Shane Weber is he? No consistency for Shanahan is there?

  8. bensawesomeness - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:35 PM

    So, if a player goes out on the ice, swinging their stick like a baseball bat at opponents heads, but missing (intentionally or unintentially) I’d be totally fine because they’re not suspending for intent anymore, only for what happened.

    • bensawesomeness - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:35 PM


    • HawaiiHockey - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:41 PM

      Stop giving Crosby game 4 strategies, please!

  9. themohel - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:38 PM

    Shanny is totally consistent – I mean Lucic rammed Miller during the season and got how many games? Oh, yeah, never mind…..

    • terriers4 - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:44 PM

      Even as a Bruins fan, this makes no sense to me either. Especialy where before the playoffs Shanahan said a game in the playoffs is worth a lot more than during the season. I just dont get it anymore.

    • balewsquare - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:51 PM

      Somehow I was able to forget about that Lucic/Miller drama. After you brought it up, I youtubed it, and I can’t understand how this is worse.

      • sabatimus - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:04 PM

        B’s fan myself, and I can’t understand it either. Lucic made a dumb decision by checking Miller, but he didn’t check Miller’s head–hmm, maybe THAT’S it. Shaw checked Smith’s head. But Lucic made a conscious decision to check Miller, and Shaw was going for the puck. Yes there was head contact but there was more dive than hit there. Similar injuries too–though I think both Miller and Smith hurt themselves by being flounders.

      • hystoracle - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:14 PM

        Shaw skated about 10 feet after it was clear the Goalie was going to play the puck. Then proceeded to run through the Goaltender anyways. (which Shannhan stated in his video). Goaltender’s helmets are designed to reflect pucks not take shoulder pads to the jaw. Goalies are like the QB in the NFL.. There are very few that can play at a high level so they are provided a higher degree of protection. Like it or not — that is the way it is .. Other wise all the teams would just run the opposing goalie. If Wash ran Thomas and knocked him out or Ottawa ran King Henry and knocked him out either series would take a considerable different look..

        Given the way he has played of late Pens fans might just ask Philly to run Fluery .. 😉

  10. wingsdjy - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:39 PM

    I guess those of us on these boards saw a different game clip than Shanny. The majority of our comments talked about how Shaw tried to avoid contact and Smith flopped. Somehow, Shanny sees the opposite.

    Bettman must be putting something in Shanny’s morning coffee.

    • balewsquare - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:42 PM

      I was thinking the same thing. A lot of the comments here said “I’d be surprised to see a suspension,” or “Shaw tried to avoid contact.” Hmmmm

  11. drewsylvania - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:41 PM

    Unreal. And you can blame Lindy Muff for the increased penalties when a goalie is involved.

    Pat Buchanan on quantum physics would be more trustworthy than Shanny on punishments.

  12. drewsylvania - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:46 PM

    For some reason the league wants us complaining about Shanny/punishments. That’s the only logical explanation.

    • wingsdjy - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:53 PM

      Because any publicity is good publicity, right?

  13. bigoldorcafromvan - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:52 PM

    I will bet anybody here that if Shane Doan was coming around behind the net as fast as he can skate the little weasel Shaw could have found a different lane and every thing would have been cool. This theory that Shaw tried to avoid Smith is BS.

    • comeonnowguys - Apr 17, 2012 at 3:59 PM

      Your goalie and coach just clowned your franchise, but Shaw’s the weasel.

      Okay, then.

      • sabatimus - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:07 PM

        Yeah seriously. And I’m not betting bigold anything, except that Shanahan is totally inconsistent.

      • bigoldorcafromvan - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:13 PM

        I guess I made it a lttle to hard for you to understand. I will type slower so you can figure it out. A different play We will have Doan coming behind the net not Smith the goalie. Can you figure it out yet.?

      • comeonnowguys - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:30 PM

        The fact that you are crazy doesn’t necessarily mean we are illiterate.

    • fourfeatherfury - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:01 PM

      When’s the last time that you saw Doan with goalie pads on? You may not have noticed, but goalkeepers are considerably wider than the other players. Try watching a game some time, it’s enlightening.

    • dekalbhawk - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:02 PM


      • bigoldorcafromvan - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:39 PM

        I guess Shaw is not a very good skater then. Plenty of room behind the net to go past A BIG WIDE GOALIE IN PADS. Not saying your illeterate but then you brought that up. I am just saying Shaw could have avoided Smith by taking the other side of him. But then if you can.t see that. Oh Well.

      • bigoldorcafromvan - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:09 PM

        Wow. Bunch of touchy Squak Fans.

    • HawaiiHockey - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:44 PM

      I really don’t think players go around looking for obvious and dramatic violations of the rules. Especially suspension worthy ones- especially in the playoffs. He was definitely trying to avoid him.

  14. sabatimus - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:01 PM

    Just when you think Shanahan’s on the right track, he utterly confuses EVERYONE–players, coaches, fans–everyone. But one thing I’m NOT confused about is this: Shanahan (or the rulebook) is 100% WRONG in making suspension severity commensurate with severity of injury. Penalize THE PLAY, NOT the injury.

  15. mathpete13 - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:03 PM

    Maybe I didn’t see the same thing Brendan Shannahan saw, but I’ll tell you what I did see:

    I saw Mike Smith lean out to take a hit, then feign death until a 5 minute major accompanied by a 10 minute misconduct hit the board.
    Then, I guess he’s 100% …without seeing the team Dr. or undergoing any Concussion precautionary measures/testing.

    I guess Brendan likes a little acting, because shortly afterwards we see Mike Tippett feign ignorance about the state of Mike Smith until shortly after Mr. Czar hands out his dartboard 3 game suspension.

    The role of VP of Player Safety seems a little unnecessary to me when they could replace him with a Pachinko machine…

  16. lukesmom2 - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    Smith sure is a great actor. He missed his calling. Shaw was clearly avoiding him. Phoenix wanted Shaw out of the game and they succeeded. Laid there until the penalty was called, got up, continued to play, questionable tonight until Shaw is out? Go Hawks! You are playing against more than 6 players out there. This is pure motivation for you. Too bad Phoenix has to resort to this kind of crap to win a game. Oh, that’s right, they LOST! Go Hawks Go!

    • sabatimus - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:10 PM

      Mike Smith should change his last name to Ribeiro. I think he’s been watching that “The Night Jaromir Jagr Almost Killed Sean Avery” YouTube video too much.

  17. mojosmagic - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:05 PM

    WTF does an injury have anything to do with it. If a guy attempts to decapitate another player he should get the same punishment whether or not he is carried off the ice. Shannahan is an idiot because all that should matter isintent.

    • sabatimus - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:12 PM

      Intent is difficult to legislate, though they do try to do so. But I agree on the injury front (see my earlier post).

  18. biffnasty - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:13 PM

    What an idiot. Never in my life have I ever seen so many suspensions in playoffs. There is absolutely no rhyme or reason to any of the suspensions. First post said it best. “should have just grabbed his head and bashed it into the post a cpl of times and only woulda gotten a fine”

    • hystoracle - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:17 PM

      And they seem to come every night.. It’s one thing when there is total mayhem like in the Philly-Pens game but some of these were hits were glorified as hits of the night when Shanahan was in his hey day. Imagine the kind of suspensions some of the oldtimers would be facing with today’s regulations.

  19. bennywisest - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:44 PM

    Great, these types of rulings (longer suspensions for injuries) are going to bring more diving into the league.

  20. crmgoodness - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:46 PM

    This is just plain awful. The puck is right there and Shaw is clearly going after the puck. It’s not like Smith released the puck and Shaw hits him a second later. He glides into him and tries to block the puck and yes makes contact with Smith but does not raise an elbow or shoulder to do so. Smith was in an awkward position having just played the puck which makes the hit look worse but this doesn’t even come close to the vicious intent of say the Asham cross check or even the Backstrom one. On the contrary he pulls his arms in tight to try to block the puck. 3 games is completely ludicrous for a hockey play gone wrong. I’m a B’s that thinks Lucic should have been suspended for his hit on Miller, but this isn’t even close to that episode. If this is truly Shanahan’s work he simply has to go.

  21. marc127 - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:49 PM

    The video states how Smith returned to the game and Shaw has never been fined or suspended in his career in the league and yet it is fair that he gets three games for something that looked a little more than embellished from Smith. Smith acted as if his nose was shattered and was down for five minutes but yet stayed in the game. This, along with the Weber incident, which was the most blatant of all the acts so far we’ve seen in these playoffs, and Shanahan can post all the videos he wants but not suspending Weber makes everything other decision makes debatable. I don’t buy that he didn’t suspend Weber because he didn’t want to look to favor the Red Wings. Who in their right mind would have questioned a Weber suspension after seeing that video?

  22. bhwksr1 - Apr 17, 2012 at 4:57 PM

    Everything has pretty much been said. Can’t wait for tonights game and see how this will play out. Cant wait to be one of 21,000 people yelling at Smith. If you’re at the game tonight, best not wear a cryotes sweater. We will be all over you! Hawks 5, cryotes 1.

  23. mathpete13 - Apr 17, 2012 at 5:10 PM

    I can say that I lost a LOT of respect for Smith after that fiasco…

    By the way he was holding his face, I was trying to figure out how he hurt his nose…

  24. fourfeatherfury - Apr 17, 2012 at 5:31 PM

    Hey, you guys ever wonder what 21,000 totally pissed Chicagoans look like? Watch tonights game to find out…

  25. hagigun - Apr 17, 2012 at 5:57 PM

    I am not sure where people see Shaw “Trying” to avoid the hit. I do not agree on 3 games, I stated zero or 1 to set a precedence on people hitting goalies with the sneaky “Whoops, was he still there?” type of stuff. But no where do I see “avoid contact” in that clip.

    You see Shaw, no one around, take his own angle of contact. Made no effort to stop or avoid. If anything he tried to bump him some. Clearly Shaw isn’t stupid and wasn’t trying to pop the goalie in the head or probably even hit him that hard, but you can’t tell me he was avoiding contact at all costs!

    I know that play, it’s “I’m gonna brush the goalie here, see if I can slow him up and pin him behind the net and/or create a scoring chance with a goalie flub”. But what usually happens is the goalie takes any contact as a sure way to flop and get a call. I’m sure even Smith didn’t want to expose himself THAT much and got popped for it.

    3 games, way too steep especially compared to Weber’s awful play, but don’t give me “He tried to avoid contact” BS. I am sure, even Shaw to a man would say he tried to brush him a little, otherwise avoid at all costs. So he either tried to make contact, or is just flat out undisciplined and stupid. Hawks fans you can pick.

    Again, I’m just a fan of a non-playoff team watching with no bias.

    • fourfeatherfury - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:08 PM

      Yeah, because Shaw always skates around with his legs together and leaning to the side, because it looks cool. Get real man.

  26. bhwksr1 - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    21,000 po’d Chicago fans will still be more classy than Vancouver fans. Can’t wait to see the video of that city when they bow out AGAIN!!!!!!!

  27. kcredneck - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:16 PM

    At least get a guy who is somewhat consistent, he’s all over the place, maybe his past concussions are clouding his judgment.

  28. xaf605 - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:37 PM

    What the!

  29. habsman - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:38 PM

    The mess you see today was started last year.

    Shanny has painted himself into a corner. He’s upping the penalties now after lenient (Webber) punishment early on. If he had done the right thing from day one he wouldn’t have this mess to control now.

    Sorry Shanny, you blew a chance for the league to promote this great game on an international stage. Instead the NHL looks like a joke with all the crap happening on the ice.

  30. kcredneck - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:44 PM

    Over your head i guess!

  31. drewsylvania - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:53 PM

    I want to hear an anti-Shanny chant tonight.

  32. xaf605 - Apr 17, 2012 at 6:54 PM

    Mike shannashame what a friggen joke

  33. bhwksr1 - Apr 17, 2012 at 7:05 PM

    I like the anti-shanny chant. I’ll try to start it up.

  34. mathpete13 - Apr 17, 2012 at 7:05 PM

    Obvious that you don’t skate. I don’t know too many players that make a corner at that clip with their legs spread standing straight up…!

  35. ndgolden - Apr 17, 2012 at 8:42 PM

    Where is y
    The consistency in the NHL as far as suspensions go??????

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