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Pens GM, coach agree Thornton suspension sends a message

Dec 14, 2013, 8:54 PM EDT

Following news of Boston Bruins forward Shawn Thornton‘s 15-game suspension, Pittsburgh Penguins GM Ray Shero and head coach Dan Bylsma had a basic message, as both mostly praised the player while criticizing the incident itself.

“I think it’s a pretty strong message,” Bylsma said.

Bylsma said that the ruling speaks volumes about getting those types of incidents out of the game. He also noted that while Brooks Orpik did skate on Friday, it was “strictly to be active” and doesn’t indicate that he’s seen in a reduction in symptoms.

The video below covers Shero’s comments, which echo what Bylsma said:

The Penguins’ Saturday contest included a questionable incident, as Deryk Engelland was ejected for a hit on Justin Abdelkader of the Detroit Red Wings. The above quotes came before the game, in case you’re wondering …

  1. muckleflugga - Dec 14, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    and the league orchestrated circle jerk plays…

    what is the penguin organization’s take on the message sent ray emery,…?

    what is the penguin organization’s take on the penalty handed ray emery…?

    will the jury presiding over the concussion lawsuit be as smugly satisfied in apparent contradictions blatantly obvious to anyone not making a living under the nhl’s roof…?

  2. cspsrbums - Dec 14, 2013 at 9:50 PM

    Why does PHT or anyone else think we care of what Crosby and the Pens think about the suspension? Do other ayers and teams get asked by them what they think of a suspension. That’s what I thought Please get off of Pittsburg nuts PHT and the NHL you really are pathetic.

    • jimw81 - Dec 14, 2013 at 9:56 PM

      u can’t offend the pens. Pht and other national hockey writers think neal using in leg has a weapon the ice is ok.

    • mp1131211 - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:15 AM

      You do know he got suspended for what he did to a pens player, right?

  3. jimw81 - Dec 14, 2013 at 9:54 PM

    Bylsma has a shred of credibility on this issue. this is the same guy who let neal go lose in the playoffs against the flyers and let neal try to give giroux an concussion.

    i think thorton should appeal this suspension and he would win because the nhl has zero persistence to work with on this suspension.

    • hazlydose - Dec 14, 2013 at 10:15 PM

      Persistence? Could you have possibly meant precedent? Bertuzzi/Moore 20 games. There’s your precedent.

      • jimw81 - Dec 14, 2013 at 10:26 PM

        Stop it. Just listen to this

      • hazlydose - Dec 14, 2013 at 11:20 PM

        What does anything in that video have to do with the appeal of Thornton’s suspension? Its just Jay Rosehill talking about the incident…

  4. cdbodtonfan - Dec 14, 2013 at 9:57 PM

    the pens are complete fools and hypocrites. their actions caused this. orpik I ot what he deserves

  5. hairpie2 - Dec 14, 2013 at 10:04 PM

    Sends a message to…? Are the Pens going to stop their dirty gutless play? Now they have suspensions to use against opponents. They can do anything they want now.

  6. mclovinhockey - Dec 14, 2013 at 10:05 PM

    Differences between what Emery and Thornton did… Emery let Holtby get ready, gave him time to prepare for the fight, Holtby was not injured, Emery fought with bare fists… Games suspended Emery: 0, Thornton: 15.
    Emery was the right call seeing as how he did not actually break any rules worthy of suspension, Thorntons was the right call cause he sucker punched and slew foot the guy.
    Of Holtby was injured and Orpik was not, would have changed both outcomes as completely
    Funny how this league works huh..

  7. 7mantel - Dec 14, 2013 at 10:57 PM

    What a hypocritical org.

  8. muckleflugga - Dec 15, 2013 at 12:07 AM


    everyone following the nhl understands disparity in league perception of foul, penalty and discipline warranting further penalty…

    everyone in these boards likely sees a lot of hockey and are in different measure, comfortable offering opinion, and accepting attendant social risk in putting ideas out there

    a jury in the coming lawsuits should they go to trial, unlikely in my belief, will see the same disparities, but in black and white terms without the same sophistication

    you can rationalize emery’s assault as being valid within current rule and discipline structures and thornton’s not…complainants will argue the league is responsible for rules and discipline governing the game, and they’ll argue grey areas should not exist if those grey areas nurture violence

    tell a jury how emery’s assault was any different than thornton’s assault…bring rakes and shovels

    and you can be sure in the course of jury selection, complainants will want people who know little about hockey, preferably educated women with children in sport, filling as many seats as possible in the jury

    highly educated people of of sex will be gold for complainants

    • mp1131211 - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:22 AM

      if you can see that this suspension is for the eyes and ears of a potential jury, then I’m sure a jury could see that. And the lawsuit is about what happened up to the point where the players where in games in the NHL. Whatever the NHL does between then (date of players participation in NHL games) and now is irrelevant for that particular suit. I don’t think this suspension is to get a better outcome in the lawsuit. Maybe to start changing policy so that they can’t be sued in the future for the same thing… but this won’t get them a better outcome in current suit.

  9. cspsrbums - Dec 15, 2013 at 12:17 AM

    Maybe they will give an opinion on how long Engelland should be suspended while they are asking. What a organization of clowns

  10. mclovinhockey - Dec 15, 2013 at 7:38 AM


    I was not really disagreeing with you or anything. Just saying it is amazing how little details can majorly change a call. By current standards of the league the calls were correct, yet if both players were injured they both would have faces similar hearings.

  11. snipedanglecelly13 - Dec 15, 2013 at 1:31 PM

    Yeah engellman really learned something from Thornton when he hit abdelkader

  12. snipedanglecelly13 - Dec 15, 2013 at 1:32 PM


  13. ryanw822 - Dec 15, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    Only thing I learned from this is dont start crap if you have a glass jaw.

    • mp1131211 - Dec 16, 2013 at 2:24 AM

      pfff…. glass jaw? This is the one thing I keep hearing that just makes me laugh. Do you think most people wouldn’t be knocked out if thorton did that to them? Just because he had a glove on doesn’t mean it was softer. Gloves actually hurt more than a bare fist in most cases

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