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Justin Abdelkader receives two-game suspension

May 5, 2013, 6:56 PM EDT

Detroit Red Wings GM Ken Holland told’s Ansar Khan that Justin Abdelkader received a two-game suspension for charging Toni Lydman in the Anaheim Ducks’ 4-0 Game 3 win on Saturday.

Update: Here’s the official video:

Abdelkader, 26, received the same two-game suspension as Ottawa’s Eric Gryba faced for a check on Montreal’s Lars Eller.

  1. eonbluekarma - May 5, 2013 at 7:03 PM

    What a joke. Point of contact wasnt head. He left feet after contact. So what is explanation? ‘defenseless puck carrier’? What a joke.

    • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 5, 2013 at 7:13 PM

      He left his feet prior to contact, and there is proof of it in the form of a picture just a few stories down.

      Unless you think the guys here at PHT are doctoring pictures in some scheme.
      He had both feet off the ice before the hit. Plain and simple
      Accept reality
      Yes it sucks, Abdelkader was playing well down the stretch but now he’s gone and people are going to have to step up. But for the love of God stop the blind homerism, open your eyes, the picture doesn’t lie, he was off the ice BEFORE making contact.

      • 19wasthebest - May 5, 2013 at 8:08 PM

        No his skate came off at point of contact. Use the pause and play buttons and stop at hit.

      • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 5, 2013 at 8:11 PM

        I don’t need play and pause, there is a picture that proves you are 100% wrong.

        So again, go find the picture, it’s just a few stories down. Clearly shows Justin off the ice before making any impact, stop being willfully ignorant and don’t get back to me until you have an explanation for the picture I’m referring to k? thanks

      • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 5, 2013 at 8:36 PM


        Right foot is at least 6 inches off the ice


        Seriously just stop, he jumped into him, accept it

      • lopo - May 5, 2013 at 9:33 PM

        @tycobbblahblah that pic shows his feet in the air after contact is made. The point is that his skates were on the ice at the point of contact. Arguing here in PHT won’t change the ruling either way.

      • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 5, 2013 at 9:37 PM

        Yes yes, it was after contact was made… that’s why the force of it hasn’t been reflected on the player who is getting hit yet. Justin has made contact with so much force that his feet are now off the ice while the player getting hit by such a force that it lifts Justin’s skates that he hasn’t moved barely at all.

        Whatever you gotta tell yourself man

      • ken49ers - May 5, 2013 at 9:42 PM

        Refs make judgments in real time, not through pictures. In real time, that was a clean hit. It should have been done after the 5 minute major. It’s playoff hockey, not tennis.

      • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 5, 2013 at 9:50 PM

        Another guy who doesn’t believe rule 42 exists ^
        Oh and they did make a judgement in real time, they called a charging major (rule 42) and threw him out of the game for it. Because you know, it wasn’t a clean hit.
        It’s the rules, not prison hockey.

      • ken49ers - May 5, 2013 at 10:10 PM

        So you’re telling me that there was intent to injure? Nevermind that the guy dropped his head either. Meanwhile over at the Sens/Habs game there have been 5 brutal fights, all with serious intent to injure with blows to the head. I’m sure zero suspensions will come of it.

        It was a charging penalty, and nothing else. The suspension was pure over kill. Go back to your Wing hating cave.

      • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 5, 2013 at 10:12 PM

        42 says nothing about intent to injure, 42 says jumping into a skater is charging, and if the play results in an injury it can be 5 and a game.

        I’ve been a Wings fan since the mid 80’s
        So ya there’s that

      • md22mdrx - May 5, 2013 at 10:16 PM

        At the point of contact, his skates were on the ice. If you frame forward right afterwards, his skates are off due to the hit. People saying his skates were off the ice are showing this few frames AFTER.

      • md22mdrx - May 5, 2013 at 10:33 PM

        A picture doesn’t show it properly. No context. The hit occurred with both feet down, while still in the collision, the feet lifted off the ice. THAT is the point at which the picture is taken.

        So to make it simple ….

        The point of contact = feet down
        A few frames AFTER the point of contact due to the inelastic collision = feet in air

      • tycobbfromfangraphs - May 5, 2013 at 10:46 PM

        Ohhhh I know you types with your rose-colored glasses what the rest of us to suspend belief in our own eyes and simple physics.
        You want us to pretend that you can’t watch Justin’s left leg prior to the hit, or his entire body and watch it uncoil as he launches himself into a player.
        You want people to buy into that since many times a players skates leave the ice that this is one of those cases. Never mind the fact that we see bended knees and body launching upward before making contact, doing so aggressively that he launches early, and ends up lol flying higher than you can ever reasonably expect a player to go without jumping.
        You people are like lawyers trying for reasonable doubt in a court case.

        He launched into a player when he needs to skate through him, he got caught, it was stupid, accept it and move on otherwise you’re going to be constantly upset watching hockey for the rest of your lives.

      • dtownbeatdown - May 6, 2013 at 12:47 AM

        Open your eyes? In the picture that is more of a digital cluster you mean… he is already making contact with him. It is called inertia. Simple physics. The ref 5 feet away didn’t seem to have an issue with it, until Lydman was still laying on the ground after the commercial break. Shouldn’t have even been a penally let alone a suspension. Why are all hockey fans turning into vaginas? This used to be a mans game… now everyone has feeeelings.

    • antkowiak666 - May 5, 2013 at 9:32 PM

      this is a joke!Gryba received two games for a perfectly legal hit and Abdelkader gets two for trying to decapitate a player……the Department of Safety got this one wrong.

      • polegojim - May 5, 2013 at 9:38 PM

        take a hike Ant… go watch table tennis.

      • md22mdrx - May 5, 2013 at 10:17 PM

        Abs hit was perfectly legal. It seems as if they’re trying to take hitting out of the game and legislating the aftermath.

    • mnhockey24 - May 6, 2013 at 4:05 AM

      you will get your answer if you watch the video

  2. buckeye044 - May 5, 2013 at 7:05 PM

    Not enough when the two are compared. Because the player wasn’t hurt should never factor into the decision.

  3. cavafox - May 5, 2013 at 7:12 PM

    Buckeye. Unfortunately it does though. Every video you see mentions that injury to a player means a worse punishment.

    • buckeye044 - May 5, 2013 at 7:46 PM

      If they truly want headshots out of the game the result should have no impact on the decision

  4. zuke13 - May 5, 2013 at 7:13 PM

    Grrrrrr!!! That’s all I got right now

  5. leiterfelixleiter - May 5, 2013 at 7:47 PM

    I’m sure if this was Perry hitting Kronwall, and Kronwall was out with a concussion as Lydman is, that the same Red Wings fans claiming this is B.S. and that the hit was clean would be just as outraged with this suspension.

    The ONLY people that think this was a clean hit or that it did not deserve a suspension are Red Wings fans. That tells you all you need to know.

    • md22mdrx - May 5, 2013 at 10:18 PM

      It’s clean according to the rulebook.

    • dtownbeatdown - May 6, 2013 at 1:26 AM

      The only people saying it deserved a suspension are Red Wing haters… That tells you all you need to know. It is easy to hate on the best American hockey team in the NHL. I thought Lydman wasn’t out with a concussion? I thought he was day to day with a sore vagina.

  6. hypefree10 - May 5, 2013 at 8:07 PM

    I played hockey once. Now I’m yelling my point! Loud noises! Seriously hurts the wings but I think Abby was trying to make contact high for a big hit on home ice but wasn’t targeting the head. Stupid mistake by a 3rd liner playing on the top line. Too bad Bertuzzi isn’t 100% to fill that power forward role with Dats and Z. Time for the little kids to roll up their sleeves and go to work. See you in game 6 Abby!
    p.s. being a di*k doesnt validate your argument. The suspension is warranted but the Wings and Abby are all class. No intent to injure and imo he left his feet to target the body as his target had moved.

  7. Stiller43 - May 5, 2013 at 8:23 PM

    Tycobb is right.

    Good suspension. Cant have that crap

    • polegojim - May 5, 2013 at 9:36 PM

      Weak apologist… try SPEED OF PLAY… go ahead and play your games at the speed of REPLAY… it’s soooooooooo close… that’s a CRAP suspension…. and that’s a fact… JACK.

    • ken49ers - May 5, 2013 at 9:40 PM

      Crap? You mean body checks in the playoffs? There have been far worse hits that have been let go.

  8. gmenfan1982 - May 5, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    Nevermind leaving his feet, it was a blatant charging penalty and he went high. He flew across the ice from the opposite faceoff circle. This deserves two games. Gryba did not.

    • polegojim - May 5, 2013 at 9:37 PM

      Go pump your girly pompoms somewhere else.

      It’s a ridiculous suspension.

    • md22mdrx - May 5, 2013 at 10:21 PM

      Charging when he didn’t stride from the bottom of the circle till the hit in the corner?

  9. porkchopexpress1969 - May 5, 2013 at 9:18 PM

    You people are nuts, watch the video not a picture. Right at contact he’s feet was on the ice, after and during in the air.

  10. ken49ers - May 5, 2013 at 9:39 PM

    It should have been over and done with after the 5 minute major. The suspension is total over kill. Shea Weber rammed a guys head into the boards last year and got zip. All the Wings haters are coming out of the woodwork to run their mouths.

  11. mikemj - May 5, 2013 at 9:44 PM

    It’s unbelievable that this gets the same suspension as Gryba’s hit. Gryba’s hit was legal and shouldn’t have even been a penalty while this was clearly a case of a player trying to inflict damage rather than making a hockey play. The fact that both hits result in the same length suspension is an outrage. It’s time for Shannahan to step aside, he has a tough job but nonetheless, he has failed at it. Time to let someone else make these calls, right now there’s no consistency.
    It’s worth repeating: Shannahan has failed at his present job.

    • themediaisdumberthandirt - May 5, 2013 at 9:55 PM

      I don’t get all these people who claim Abdelkaders hit was so much worse than Gryba’s hit. Gryba hit the dude right in the head. People don’t get knocked out from a shoulder hit so wake up. Abs may or may not have left his feet, but that is irrelevant, he hit him in the head. I’m a huge Wings fan and even I can see that. Both cases involved the offensive player not seeing the hit coming and ended up basically the same. ken49ers is right about Shea Weber, that was total garbage and not a hockey play in the least bit, but that is old news and there is no point even bringing it up.

      • md22mdrx - May 5, 2013 at 10:14 PM

        But he actually DIDN’T hit him in the head. Watch the replay. The dude’s head clips OVER the shoulder of Abs … meaning the shoulder went UNDER the head. If you want to say he hit the dude’s neck, fine …. but he did NOT hit him in the head at all. The only contact with the head was when the dude’s head whiplashed forward …. also proving the fulcrum point was UNDER the head …. meaning the hit went UNDERNEATH.

  12. acieu - May 5, 2013 at 9:49 PM

    Punishment fits the crime. Left his feet. More than two strides and hit to the head. I am an J A fan with him being a former Muskegon player. Commit the crime do the time.

  13. md22mdrx - May 5, 2013 at 10:36 PM

    People here don’t know much about inelastic collisions, fulcrums, and physics in general. You could teach a physics class with this video.

    • michiganhockey11 - May 6, 2013 at 12:56 PM

      Inertia, thou art a heartless b*tch.

  14. mikemj - May 5, 2013 at 11:00 PM

    Of course it’s a hit to the head, and an obvious hit to the head. He launched himself into the hit. He left his feet to make the hit.
    If you can’t see this you are drinking way too much Red Wings koolade.
    It’s one thing to be a die hard fan; it’s quite another to blindly follow no matter what the circumstances.

  15. fortwaynekomets - May 5, 2013 at 11:14 PM


    these BUTTHURT Redwings fans make me laugh!

    good luck winning without your golden boy now!

    Ducks got this! 5 or 6 games max

    • dtownbeatdown - May 6, 2013 at 1:16 AM

      Hey at least michigan has a hockey team (that has more cups then any other American team btw, so nothing to be butthurt about)… who you rooting for the Indiana Ice? Having the Komets (I see why you are bias towards the ducks now) as your user name is embarrassing… can’t even make the ECHL playoffs.

      And calling Abdelkader our golden boy can only mean you must not watch much hockey.

      Clean hit, leaves his feet after point of contact causing inertia which forces him to leave his feet IN THE FIRST PLACE. The ref didn’t call it until after the fact Lydman was still on his ass after the commercial break. A penalty should not be given just because it was a bone crunching hit that injured him. Nor should a misconduct that ultimately lead to a suspension. AND THATS A FACT JACK.

      Thats okay, Ab will be back on game 6 to lay him out again.

      Get the sand out of your vagina pansy.

  16. fortwaynekomets - May 5, 2013 at 11:18 PM

    I will add… the Redwings are LUCKY he only got TWO games!!!! it was a very Dirty hit from an inexperienced young player.

    Abdelkater = young and dumb

    • mikeinindy - May 6, 2013 at 8:39 AM

      He is lucky that it stops at 2 games, obviously shanny still loves the red army team — oops, I mean the red wings. On top of the charging, he blatantly went for the head, and if you want to look — you can see the flying elbow to prove it. C’mon folks, if you can’t see it PLEASE take an eye test!!!

  17. boisehockeyref - May 5, 2013 at 11:31 PM

    Wow..ok,here is the “bottom line” for all of you that thought this hit was clean…you are flat out WRONG!!! I’ve refereed this game for nearly 25 years, been involved for 40. No, I was never an NHL referee…but I do have something called common sense…I can ASSURE you, with no hesitation…BAD HIT!!! The call on the ice was correct, the explanation Shanny gave was spot on, and he is DAMN lucky he didn’t get more than 2 games. Stop apologizing and making crap up…it was a bad hit, and there is no way you can explain otherwise…Who gives an S if his feet left at point of hit…it was CLEAR he had no intention of playing the puck, which is what they are supposed to do. He lined him up and his clear intention was to punish the player. They got this absolutely RIGHT.

    • dtownbeatdown - May 6, 2013 at 12:57 AM

      Maybe you should take the refs job standing 5 feet away then that didn’t call it. It is the fact that when two players collide, it causes inertia, which causes a reaction of force against Ab’s body which makes him then leave his feet. He was not targeting the head, nor should it have been a penalty. Doesn’t matter if they got it right or not the first time. They called no penalty at first but then later, much later after the play had occurred there is a penalty and game misconduct and now suspension. Now go ref your pee wee game and shut up. There is a reason you never made it to the NHL in 25 years as a ref… probably because you suck.

  18. northstars17 - May 5, 2013 at 11:53 PM

    ^^^ couldn’t have said it better myself. Dirty hit any way you look at it.

  19. northstars17 - May 5, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    If the Redwings lose this series, they can very well blame Justin Abdelkader for it. This is a guy who got a hat – trick against the Ducks, and he’s going to put his own self glory of a hard dirty hit in front of his team winning?!? selfish and wrong all around!!!

  20. boisehockeyref - May 6, 2013 at 4:47 AM

    As a matter of fact, I don’t suck. And you know what? Refs 5 feet from the play do miss things. But ya know what? There’s 3 other sets of eyes…and they had a chance to talk about the hit. It’s easy to judge when you watch it on tv, or from the stands. It’s totally something else being on the ice. You obviously never done it, nor do you even understand the mechanics behind what the officials do. Don’t worry…your beloved Wings will play again. And no I’m not a Wings hater…I’m a realist…and I will put my rule knowledge and game management up againt yours any day you choose. Sorry pal, any way you attempt to spin it, they got it right.

  21. bubblehead22 - May 6, 2013 at 7:27 AM

    Why is anyone surprised by this decision or the Gryba decision? Supplemental discipline is as consistent and subjective as the NHL refs themselves game to game. It’s absolutely terrible.

  22. michiganhockey11 - May 6, 2013 at 8:50 AM

    For everyone screaming about “intent to injure”, by that logic Souray should have been given a suspension for cross-checking Abdelkader from behind and sending him head first into the boards in game 2. But wait, only a 2min minor.

    Shanny had to follow precident after having a brain crap by suspending Gryba for a completely clean hit.

    Scott Stevens and Vladimir Konstantinov would last 1-2 games in this league now. I guess all those coaches we had growing up were dead wrong to teach us to keep our heads up. Don’t have to keep your head on a swivel in the NHL anymore. If you get caught with your head down, the other guy will get suspended.

  23. eonbluekarma - May 6, 2013 at 9:17 AM

    Significant contact to head? Really? Did you actually watch the video/game shanny? This is just stupid. The NHL doesnt hold puck carriers responsible for their actions anymore. Guys who skate around with their heads down should be obliterated.

  24. shoobiedoobin - May 6, 2013 at 12:37 PM

    Hits like these are required to act as a barometer to see who knows hockey and who is just out to lay down some blind, self gratifying judgment.

    He glided the whole way. Fact.
    He hit shoulder to shoulder. Fact.
    He has no history of dirty play. Fact.
    Clean hit. Fact.

    If you claim otherwise, you’re wrong. Plain and simple. Not up for debate. Rule book states clean. Lil’ Lacky Shanahan had to lay down a 2 gamer to appease those with sore vaginas.

    • michiganhockey11 - May 6, 2013 at 1:05 PM

      Funny in the statement, Shanny doesn’t say anything about leaving his feet before the hit but that he “elevates”. If you are still on your feet and lean up into a guy you are checking, but don’t leave your feet, it’s a clean hit. Priciple contact was shoulder to shoulder, but prior to the ht Lydman was turning his body around without looking. That’s on him.

      Charging criteria was normally leaving your feet. I guess I wonder how “projecting” yourself into another person (which is done on most hits as people “lean” into others) is the same as leaving your feet.

      It’s another headscratcher for sure.

      • shoobiedoobin - May 6, 2013 at 1:13 PM

        He makes it ambiguous and blurs the line because he can’t directly, explicitly state why this is a suspension.

        Anyone with a functioning brain and a decent hockey IQ can tell the real reasoning is everything BUT the actual hit. Politics, precedent in regards to past mistakes, appeasing the shriekers, etc.

        Clean hit. It just LOOKED bad. But many clean hits do. Much like one poster said, we’re legislating the aftermath and that’s ridiculous. But very par for the course for our society when dealing with fear-we overreact and become irrational.

  25. boisehockeyref - May 6, 2013 at 8:16 PM

    Well…we can look at it this way…did Abs make ANY attempt to play the puck. The answer would be…NO. Let’s look at the definition of a “check”. Checking is the act of separating the player from the puck, not the player from his head. Sorry…he made zero attempt to play the puck. Regardless if the call was made during play, after the whistle, or during the media timeout, it was obvious to someone on the officiating crew that there was an issue. And since linesman are not allowed to stop play for a penalty unless it is too many men or defencive delay of game (puck over boards from defencive zone), if it was in fact a linesman who brought it to thwir attention, I would say protocol was followed.

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