Earlier today Brendan Shanahan and the NHL Department of Player Safety handed down a well deserved 5 game suspension to Brad Marchand for his low hit on Vancouver Canuck’s defenseman Sami Salo. Shanahan’s video, which you can watch here, does a great job of outlining why the hit was so unacceptable.
Shanahan lays out 3 key points as to why the suspension was so high. The hit was 1. not Instinctive, Defensive or Evasive. 2. a clip and 3. an injury occurred. Another factor that didn’t paint Marchand in a good light was the fact that just :16 seconds earlier, the same two players converged on the puck in the exact same area and during that run in Marchand stood up and absorbed the hit from Salo. The video then highlights Marchand taking liberties with Salo, clearly frustrated.
So, the suspension may seem a little heavy but if the NHL wants this type of stuff out of the game, they have to use swift and heavy justice. It’s a little bothersome to hear fans calling in to talk shows defending the hit. I’m all for rooting for your team and loving certain players, but let’s not be a bunch of homers! In Boston we pride ourselves on being passionate but knowledgeable. If that’s true then we need to look at this without our Black and Gold glasses on and see it for what it is: a dirty, dangerous hit, by a repeat offender.
Let’s hope Marchand takes a look at himself a bit and eliminates this part of his game. If not he runs the risk of getting an unrepairable reputation.