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Sutter on Brown’s kneeing ejection: ‘It’s not the right call’

Dec 20, 2013, 9:00 AM EDT

Darryl Sutter AP

While the Los Angeles Kings beat the San Jose Sharks 4-1 on Thursday night, they had to do it for most of the game without captain Dustin Brown.

Brown was given a five-minute major for kneeing and a game misconduct for his hit on Sharks rookie Tomas Hertl. Hertl left the game and did not return.

As could be expected, Kings coach Darryl Sutter didn’t agree with call and said as much following the game as Jon Rosen of L.A. Kings Insider shares.

“You lose a player for almost the whole game when you’re in this type of schedule – that is not the right call. Clear. No more questions about it. I saw it live and I saw two or three replays. It’s not the right call.”

Unsurprisingly, Sharks coach Todd McLellan didn’t share the same viewpoint but said it was up to the NHL Department of Player Safety to decide how bad it was.

Brown has a bit of a history with bad hits around the knee. His hit on then Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Michal Rozsival during Game 5 of the 2012 Western Conference Final left Coyotes players and fans alike furious over the lack of call or league discipline for the hit.

  1. lilroot9 - Dec 20, 2013 at 9:21 AM

    I thought there was intent, as Brown knew what he was doing, did not try to “hit” (legal body check) Hertl and did not avoid him. To me it comes down to respect for the fellow player.

    Don’t get me wrong, it Brown wanted to play on my team, I would want him, but he does have a cloudy past of questionable hits. You think you can say that about most physical players, but his hits with his knees on someone else’s knees makes you wonder.

    I hate that the NHL take injury into the suspension, because intent should be the big thing, but it sounds like Hertl was hurt pretty good, interested to see what they say about him today (Injury wise) because I believe that will go a long way.

    I do think it helps Brown’s case by his coach saying what he did was not bad, cause if he said he thought it was potentially over the line the NHL would sit him down for sure, but now not so sure.

    • joey4id - Dec 20, 2013 at 9:29 AM

      Intent? Intent to what? If you mean intent to knee Hertl, then why didn’t Brown lead with his right knee and stick it out to make sure he made contact with Hertl’s leg. Think back to Neal’s knee on Marchand. He lead with his left leg and and stuck it out to make sure he made contact with Marchand’s head.

      • lilroot9 - Dec 20, 2013 at 9:54 AM

        Intent to injure. He saw a player in a vulnerable position and took advantage of it. Why did he just glide into him (not moving either direction)?

        I agree the Neal knee was terrible, I was saying 10+ games, that was embarrassing.

        But on this hit, it needs to be taken care of properly with. If you don’t play hockey (I only played roller hockey) we tend to say,”but they are going really fast and collisions happen”. Where in reality, it is really fast, but this is the best of the best in this sport and they play everyday for hours. He knew what he was doing (or not doing) and he needs to be talked to. I don’t care for either team, but if one of my better players goes out of the lineup for something that could be avoided, should be avoided, I don’t like watching that.

      • cybernetikghost - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:33 AM

        How in the world was Hertl in a vulnerable position? He was skating. Brown was just as vulnerable as he was. They both had their knees out. Hertl saw Brown as much as the reverse. When arguement points turn to over exaggerated details, people stop listening.

    • joey4id - Dec 20, 2013 at 10:14 AM

      Ok! According to you Brown intentionally kneed Hertly, and needs to be dealt with. I have played ice hockey, and at very competitive levels, but never pro. I see an accidental collision. Nothing new. Two people look at the video and see different things. Here’s my issue with intent. We use “intent” a lot when we write about borderline hits, but never apply to fighting. There is clearly intent to injure another player when 2 players engage in a fight. Eric Boulton concussed George Parros in a fight on Dec 14, 2013. What do you think the NHL should do about these sorts of intent?

    • hockey412 - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:28 AM

      So how do you prove ‘intent to injure’?

      • joey4id - Dec 20, 2013 at 2:44 PM

        I have no bloody idea. Did Wilson intend to injure Schenn? Did Quincey intend to injure Getzlaf? Did England intend to injure Abdelkader? Did Thornton intend to injure Orpik? Did Neal intend to injure Marchand? Did Brown intend to injure Hertl? Intent is extremely difficult to prove in a court of law let alone during an NHL hearing. One thing is for sure Neal intended to knee Marchand, and others intended to make a hit. Neal clearly led with his knee and extended his leg outward. Like I’ve said before, if they were to suspend players on intent then every player who engaged in a fight would get suspended. Clearly if you’re swing at someone’s head you intend to connect and injure them.

  2. columbiannecktie - Dec 20, 2013 at 9:26 AM

    Big surprise, a coach defends one of his players for a questionable hit.

    • thailer35 - Dec 20, 2013 at 10:04 AM

      Dirty Diving Dustin and Dodgy Dimwit Darryl at it again!

      • ron05342 - Dec 20, 2013 at 10:07 AM

        Cry me a river. Watch the play again. There was no intent on that play.

      • thailer35 - Dec 20, 2013 at 10:23 AM

        Go see what the youtube spits out when you type in Dustin Brown knee or Dustin Brown dirty or Dustin Brown dive. I’m not even going to call you a homer, because that’s not fair, it is hard to see intent in this video. That doesn’t mean it’s not there, it just means DB the DB is a professional in his trade.

      • cybernetikghost - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:35 AM

        You should write for nickelodeon, that’s cute.

    • cup612 - Dec 21, 2013 at 4:43 AM

      Sutter is a black and white and no gray in between kind of guy. He’s pretty upfront and no nonsense approach. I think if he thought Brown’s hit was dirty, Sutter would say so.

  3. sjsharks66 - Dec 20, 2013 at 10:09 AM

    Like I said, it could have been an accident but how many “accidental kneeing” hits is Brown going to have in his career? Seems to happen a lot.

    But hey, im just a “snarks” fan and Clowe played the puck from the bench that one time. So everything I say is automatically jealousy, trolling or wrong.

    Happy Friday y’all! :)

    • davebabychreturns - Dec 20, 2013 at 10:19 AM

      Tough to disagree with any of this – even the sarcastic parts. ;)

    • cybernetikghost - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:37 AM

      My comment made it into your post. That’s nice.

  4. blomfeld - Dec 20, 2013 at 11:26 AM

    M-A-D ?

    If Brown is guilty of anything then that would be MAD (mutually assured destruction) as both players were immediately gone from the game, one injured and one ejected. And yet I don’t think that was Brown’s intent ? Actually, I doubt if ‘intent’ was ever even on the mind of Brown ? Rather, what I see is a collision between two excellent players which ‘unfortunately’ happens from time to time in a physical and fast-moving game like hockey. I personally hope that Hertl is okay and that he can return to his lineup without delay or residual injury.

  5. kingcobraman - Dec 20, 2013 at 1:08 PM

    I bet that hit made Sutter smile … they are both a$$clowns…

  6. sporkov - Dec 20, 2013 at 7:55 PM

    Imagine that, Dustin Brown does not understand that his play is dirty and Sutter has the same mindset. Shocking!!!

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