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MacKenzie suspended three games for boarding Ekman-Larsson

Jan 3, 2014, 3:07 PM EDT

Columbus Blue Jackets v Phoenix Coyotes Getty Images

Columbus forward Derek MacKenzie has been suspended three games for boarding Phoenix defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson last night at Arena.

In making the ruling, the NHL’s Department of Player Safety noted that MacKenzie “recklessly” hit Ekman-Larsson from behind, “driving forcefully into Ekman-Larsson’s back and causing a violent collision with the boards.”

Not only was the check illegal and avoidable, ruled the league, it was made “with significant force” that caused an injury, as Ekman-Larsson did not return to the game, playing just 4:07 on the night.

If you’re counting, that makes eight suspensions for boarding this season, plus one in the pre-season.

  1. shaundre93 - Jan 3, 2014 at 3:23 PM

    This is worth three games and Lupul just gets a fine!?!?! HAHAHAHA what a joke this has become. All NHL “discipline” does is punish depth forwards. That wasn’t a great hit, but he didn’t hit him near the head at all, and I firmly believe there has to be some responsibility on the part of the player to defend himself. OEL pretty much skated from the red line to where he got hit looking at nothing but the puck facing the boards. If he puts himself in better position, its a nothing play. Figure it out Shanahan. Whats worse, finishing a hit or intentionally cross checking someone up high? Wasn’t lupul also suspended fairly recently? But he’s one of torontos best players! we cant suspend him! what a joke. If you wanna injure another teams player, just make sure you send your best player out there to do it. Worst case Ontario you get 5 games, and that’s with a LONG history. Throw a hard decent hit with a depth player and you’ll be getting the book!

    • basedrum777 - Jan 4, 2014 at 1:04 AM

      I”m not going to disagree that the high hit in the winter classic doesn’t deserve a suspension b/c it does. Longer than this hit does b/c of intent alone. But this hit is really really dangerous and unnecessary. It was clearly boarding and the reason boarding exists is so that a player doesn’t have to worry about being near the boards and getting railroaded into them risking injury.

  2. charlieconway96 - Jan 3, 2014 at 3:28 PM

    “This is boarding”

    • lightning69 - Jan 3, 2014 at 5:14 PM

      Exactly! Now NHL, remember what this looks like and call it on the ice EVERYTIME.

      What pisses real fans (not homers) off is “star” players getting away with murder nightly.

      3 weeks ago the Bolts Panik got 2 games and 5min Maj for hitting Caps Alzer with less force than this. Alzner put himself in horrible position, but it doesn’t matter. Panik absolutely earned 2 games. Can’t make that hit. But the on ice Maj (letting Ovi take target practice for 5) cost us the game.

      Just be consistent ON ICE and OFF and maybe players will be too.

  3. jacketsfan7 - Jan 3, 2014 at 3:49 PM

    I think you’re forgetting Mackenzie is a blue jacket , which contributes to the length of the suspension😑

  4. jeffcmh - Jan 3, 2014 at 6:22 PM

    Yet no penalty was called and a referee was right there. The league and the officials need to get on the same page.

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