The Refinery

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What’s the difference?

What’s the difference between this:

and this:

as two comparable hits? Would you say it’s because it’s Torres on Moss versus Doug Weight on Brandon Sutter?

You’d be totally correct. That’s because Raffi Torres was fined 2500 dollars and Doug Weight walked away scott-free. There’s no consistency from the league’s front office: punishment is doled out on reputation. Just ask Chris Simon and Chris Pronger – a tale of two Chris’s.

Speaking of Raffi Torres, we should watch out for him tomorrow.

Mike’s Blawg has more on this.

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9 Comments»

  j2i2m22 wrote @

The Torres hit was also a blatant interference, meanwhile Weight’s hit was a clean hit. There’s your difference and the reason for the fine.

  tommysalo wrote @

56.1 Interference – A strict standard on acts of interference must be adhered to in all areas of the rink.

Body Position: Body position shall be determined as the player skating in front of or beside his opponent, traveling in the same direction. A player who is behind an opponent, who does not have the puck, may not use his stick, body or free hand in order to restrain his opponent, but must skate in order to gain or reestablish his proper position in order to make a check.

A player is allowed the ice he is standing on (body position) and is not required to move in order to let an opponent proceed. A player may “block” the path of an opponent provided he is in front of his opponent and moving in the same direction. Moving laterally and without establishing body position, then making contact with the non-puck carrier is not permitted and will be penalized as interference. A player is always entitled to use his body position to lengthen an opponent’s path to the puck, provided his stick is not utilized (to make himself “bigger” and therefore considerably lengthening the distance his opponent must travel to get where he is going); his free hand is not used and he does not take advantage of his body position to deliver an otherwise illegal check.

Possession of the Puck:

The last player to touch the puck, other than the goalkeeper, shall be considered the player in possession. The player deemed in possession of the puck may be checked legally, provided the check is rendered immediately following his loss of possession.

Was it really a “clean” hit?

It is neither a “clean” hit by the rule book’s standards nor is it a “clean” hit by common sense standards. I know Doug Weight felt bad after and there’s no attempt to make him feel guilty, but the truth is that it was not a “clean” hit especially since he had already lost possession of the puck – the hit was really late.

  j2i2m22 wrote @

Wow, I am sorry to say, but you are delusional. That was not a late hit, the only thing that makes it appear like a dirty hit is the fact that Sutter was stretched out for the puck, and he left himself in a vunerable position. It is up to the players to protect themselves, Moss was blinded-sided while Sutter was hit straight-on, Moss never had possession nor was he about to come into possession with the puck. The fact the quoted the rulebook in fact further establishes my points. I fear that you are seeing this with oil-coloured glasses

  kaiosama2001 wrote @

j2i2m22 you’re on crack.

  tommysalo wrote @

http://www.topix.net/content/wapo/2008/04/nhl-fines-cooke-for-hit-on-lecavalier

You may be of the opinion that I have Oil-coloured glasses on but I’d have to disagree. There’s a definite trend in the NHL of punishing the “bad guys” and letting the “good guys” off the hook. If you’re Chris Pronger, Doug Weight, you’re off the hook for doing dumb shit.

If you’re Matt Cooke, Raffi Torres, or Adam Mair, you’re going to be punished according to the rules.

There’s nothing in that definition that proves me wrong. It’s a rule that has multiple dimensions. Understand that no rule in that defends an illegal act on the ice: any one thing that is disobeyed will immediately make the play illegal. It’s like going into court and saying “well, I had a license for the gun I used to shoot the guy in the head.” It’s great that you got first part right, but the act itself is illegal.

If you can’t see that, you’re delusional and you NEED glasses.

  tommysalo wrote @

Btw, that concept of proving something wrong by disobeying a single criteria is called falsifiability:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Falsifiability

  j2i2m22 wrote @

Loving this debate by the way. Although I think it is clear that we’re never going to agree on this issue. I believe the Weight hit was clean. Had Sutter been standing up rather than kneeling forward like he was, Weight’s shoulder would have connected to his chest. While it is a hit to the head no doubt, there isn’t a penalty against that for the time being. I DO believe there is favouritism in the NHL, (ie. Pronger) I don’t think this is a case of it. Most within the hockey circles believe it was a clean hit, Rutherford included.

  tommysalo wrote @

Loving it too man.

It is clean by certain parts of the definition, though in reality it is also interference by definition. Let’s look at the concept of a “clean hit”

1. Doug Weight feels bad afterwards: do you feel bad after doing something that’s not wrong? Okay, perhaps he feels remorse for knocking the poor kid out when he didn’t intend any harm. But remorse is usually a good sign that you know you did something wrong even though there is no way to describe it in the current definition.

2. Any play that blatantly causes harm to another player that is considered “clean” only by definition because otherwise there would be no reason for teammates to go try to defend the guy who knocked out. There’s a difference between pokechecking a guy who doesn’t have a puck and laying the shoulder to his chest/head. Intention to injure or not, the extra sensationalism of laying a big hit means that you had the intent to do more than just disconnect the puck from the player – it was blatantly to remove the player from the play, which is interference.

So okay, it’s a “clean” hit. But that doesn’t make the hit any safer, any smarter, or any more effective than a simple pokecheck.

We all love watching big hits in hockey. And we all love getting rich too.

Economists realise that the risk/reward ratio of entrepreneurs is a fluctuating graph of positive and negative consequences. Hockey hits are a similar risk: you can gain momentum for your hit on a successful “clean” hit.

But the consequences to the player who is hit or to you, by being tackled by the guy’s teammates, are something you will have to consider, neglecting the potential affects of suspensions or fines, if your name happens to be Torres or Simon and not Pronger or Weight.

  tommysalo wrote @

If you take the wrong risk, you pay your dues fairly. NHL players are no different.


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