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Vigneault: Referees ‘missed’ questionable Prust hit on Stepan

May 23, 2014, 12:35 AM EDT

Alain Vigneault wasn’t pleased with one incident involving Montreal Canadiens forward Brandon Prust that the New York Rangers coach believes triggered a later incident involving his own player, Daniel Carcillo.

Prust threw a questionable hit on Rangers forward Derek Stepan – the hit appeared late and high – early in the first period but didn’t receive a penalty on the play.

New York’s players took exception, and targeted Prust a few minutes later.

Carcillo was given a minor penalty for charging after he hit Prust behind the Montreal net, but was given a game misconduct for an incident involving a linesman when a fight broke out between Prust and Derek Dorsett.

As per TSN’s Darren Dreger, officials were going to review the incident involving Carcillo and that he could face a suspension.

“Yeah, we looked at it they missed it,” Vigneault said of the Prust hit on Stepan, then expanding on the Carcillo incident.

“Well, he can’t do that, obviously, what he did there, but we’ll let the league handle that. I believe if a penalty would have been called on Prust, it probably wouldn’t have happened, but there is nothing we can do about it.”

Habs coach Michel Therrien simply said afterward that he was not concerned the league may review the Prust hit.

“It was a bad hit,” Stepan told Katie Strang of ESPN. “I would certainly hope the league looks at it.”

  1. hockeyflow33 - May 23, 2014 at 3:52 AM

    There wasn’t anything questionable about it. It was interference, a late hit and point of contact was the head…seems cut and dry.

    • miketoasty - May 23, 2014 at 8:15 AM

      Point of contact was the head?

      PHT you can be so funny sometimes.

      • titansbro - May 23, 2014 at 8:23 AM


      • miketoasty - May 23, 2014 at 9:21 AM

        So you send me to a page with two GIFs that show pretty obviously it was shoulder to chest? Not really helping your point much.

        You can see the numbers on Prust’s shoulders going straight into the “Rangers” on the front of Stepan’s jersey.

        Using the link you posted:

        Notice the blue between Stepan’s head and Prust’s arm. That would be jersey, which if you know anything about hockey, does not cover the face.

      • miketoasty - May 23, 2014 at 9:30 AM

        And just to add, of course it was a late hit that should have been called for interference but it was not a head shot, just wanted to clear that up.

    • joey4id - May 23, 2014 at 8:37 AM

      Not at all cut and dry. Refs could have called him for a late hit/interference. The head was not targeted nor was it the principal point of contact. The league doesn’t suspend players unless the head was target and the principal point of contact was the head. Prust’s shoulder first made contact with the chest and on the follow through made contact with the head. Should not be a suspension.

      • 2qswing - May 23, 2014 at 9:03 AM

        we have argued in the past, always friendly I would add, but you are spot-on here.

      • joey4id - May 23, 2014 at 9:13 AM

        Cheers! 😉

      • boisehockeyref - May 23, 2014 at 7:12 PM

        Well, the league thought otherwise…obviously…he had a BROKEN JAW!!

      • joey4id - May 24, 2014 at 7:14 AM

        Yep! Anytime a player suffers an injury on a late hit the league will suspend the offending player. I wrote Prust wouldn’t be suspended because Stepan game back to finish the game.

    • idonthavethebloodyoucrave - May 23, 2014 at 8:42 AM

      That hit was bad because it was late. It absolutely should have been a penalty.

      If that hit was in the vicinity of the puck and not late, that’s a solid clean hit.

      I Vigneault

      • idonthavethebloodyoucrave - May 23, 2014 at 8:45 AM

        That hit was bad because it was late. It absolutely should have been a penalty.

        If that hit was in the vicinity of the puck and not late, that’s a solid clean hit.

        Vigneault should just be lucky that the refs didn’t call an additional unsportsmanlike penalty for Carcillo’s elbow to the refs.

    • truebluerangers17 - May 23, 2014 at 2:43 PM

      So the Habs Fans are saying it wasn’t a hit to the head? I’ve never seen a hit to the chest cause a broken jaw which Stepan is in surgery now to get repaired. If Jonette calls the interference/high hit against Prust then maybe the fight doesn’t happen. Oh last time I checked Charging shall mean the actions of a player who, as a result of distance traveled, shall violently check an opponent in any manner.

      Carsillo’s check was violent? It wasn’t as hard as 10 other checks in the game including Prust on Stepan. You cant hook or hold but slashing, slew footing (SUBBAN on Hagelin) and head hunting is legal.

      Marc Jonette was then speaking to Therian making sure he got the call right. The NHL is a JOKE.

      • boisehockeyref - May 23, 2014 at 7:15 PM

        Let us not forget it was Mr. Joanette that was an EMBARRASSMENT in game 6 vs. Pens… Gets in the way and kills a 2 on 1…Calls Kreider for being shoved into Marc-Andre Fleury for Goaltender Interference… And then loses his whistle and has no spare, which is Referee 101…you ALWAYS carry a spare whistle!

  2. canadatude - May 23, 2014 at 6:43 AM

    Guy got caught skating with his head down. All the experts here have never played the game. Prima Donna was admiring his pass and got his bell rung.

    • idonthavethebloodyoucrave - May 23, 2014 at 8:47 AM

      If the puck was anywhere close to Stepan, you’d be right.

  3. LampyB - May 23, 2014 at 7:09 AM

    Canadatude just shut your mouth. You couldn’t be more wrong.

  4. bostonstranglah72 - May 23, 2014 at 7:33 AM

    Canadatude did you feel that way when Pacioretty tried to squeak by Chara in the Bell Centre? You were probably busy clogging 911 lines. Habs fans are the most hypocritical fans in sports.

    • bigblueapple - May 23, 2014 at 8:52 AM

      That Chara hit on Pacioretty was dirty and premeditated. Sure some fans were reported calling 911 about it. Rather silly but hey, fan bases do silly things sometimes. You can’t really hold the whole fan base responsible for it. On the other hand many Bruins fans took to Twitter with racist comments about Subban. I’m not here being a jackass two weeks later assuming all Bruins fans do that. Bottom line is, grow up.

      Also regardless of the fact Habs fans did that, I hardly think Bruins should be bringing that hit over and over. It’s shameful moment for the Bruins and their fans, let it go, buddy.

      • hairpie2 - May 23, 2014 at 10:57 AM

        The Chara hit was far from dirty or premeditated, it was just unlucky for Pacioretty given his relation to the boards. Also, it wasn’t simply Bruin fans that were making racist comments about Subban, many of those accounts were traced to other geographic areas in the country, many from Detroit.

      • dueman - May 23, 2014 at 1:46 PM

        hairpie2 – Do you really think that all Bruins fans live only in Boston? Do you think that just because some of those accounts were not from Boston that it justifies the ones that were? The whole point, that you seemed to have missed, that bigblueapple is making is, quit labeling entire fan bases in any way, shape, or form, because there are fans of every team in every part of both the U.S. and Canada, as well as other parts of the world. To think that an entire teams fan base is the same in any way, is just stupid.

    • charlie24zz - May 23, 2014 at 9:12 AM

      Chara broke his neck you ass****. What kind of hockey fan are you?

  5. kastout11 - May 23, 2014 at 7:47 AM

    I am a Flyers fan, so I was raised to hate the Rangers, but how did the referees miss that call? I am usually not one to criticize officials/referees, but come on, you have to make that call. I know in the playoffs, refs usually want to swallow the whistle and let them play, buy that interference has to be called.

  6. titansbro - May 23, 2014 at 8:24 AM

  7. dropthepuckeh - May 23, 2014 at 8:32 AM

    Prust hit was definitely late and should have been a penalty but I don’t think he targeted the head at all or deserves a suspension. Prust looked like he was very aware of keeping his elbow in and leading with his shoulder. He hits his head after the shoulder.
    Not sure why the linesman had to take Carcillo off the ice to begin with. He may have wanted a dance partner but he didn’t do anything wrong up until the over-zealous linesman wrapped him up and brought him to the box. Obviously there was an initial penalty on the play to Carcillo bit I think the linesman duty is to monitor the active “fight”.

    Good on Prust for answering the bell after his hit. Not a typical Montreal reaction but he was probably salivating when he saw it was Dorsett who asked him.

    • joey4id - May 23, 2014 at 8:47 AM

      “but I think the linesman duty is to monitor the active “fight”. Absolutely not! The primary responsibility of the ref is to get the penalized player into the penalty box. 1) because he can be target of other players 2) he can get into more altercations and end up with more penalties and supplemental discipline

      For his own good he’s better off in the box. Admitted the linesman was man handling him, and there’s nothing worse for a player who’s hot & competitive as Carcillo when you get the sense that a ref is roughing you up. It’s a strange feeling to say the least. Driscoll as to tone it down a notch or two.

  8. 2qswing - May 23, 2014 at 9:00 AM

    Gotta love Dors. When he was with us (Jackets fan) I once saw him take on John Scott. Say what you want, guy is absolutely fearless. once scored 12 goals as well. Plays hard, knows his role. Most aggitators are otherwise talentless and take stupid penalties (Carcillo). Dorsett can actually play the game.

  9. 950003cups - May 23, 2014 at 9:08 AM

    Prust did not hit the head. Not at all. Stepan got the wind knocked out of him. That’s why he was down so long.

    Y’all can stop crying. I didn’t hear you babies crying when Rupp punched Brodeur. Ohhhhh ok, it’s only terrible when it happens to the rangers. I get it now.

  10. bigdaddy44 - May 23, 2014 at 1:06 PM

    The refs did not miss this penalty. They tried to ignore it which goes along with the way this league through it officiating favors the Canadiens. The refs were just doing their jobs, not under direct instruction, but rather ‘influence’ from the league. Just like the NBA officiating, which Tim Donaghey described so well.

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