(Updated AGAIN: 8-game suspension for Wisniewski. Yes!) (I added more links and a picture hours after the original post, so I've reposted it.) Have to delay another whimsical post on green St. Patrick's stuff (oh well, a little time to look for more) for obvious reasons: the horrorshow of tonight's Blackhawks at Anaheim Ducks game. That piece I wrote about Sunday versus the Capitals (a reader Twittered, er, tweeted "holy f-bomb!" to me about it)? Oh, expressed only a fraction of the anger I have about this one...
I'm too tired to go through all the images from the game (had an hour-long phone call with friend who hadn't watched the game yet, so I said little about it and stuck to other hockey topics. I was cheered up a little. I've had a lot of good stories I haven't mentioned yet) so I'll just give you Coach Quenneville:
First, a little more about Alex Ovechkin's hit on Brian Campbell. I guess Ovechkin apologized? Don't feel like looking it up now. Again, I don't hate him or think he's a dirty player, just someone who's gotten kind of reckless. I haven't read much on Capitals blogs since the incident but "I Want my Innocent Ovi Back," a thoughtful piece at On Frozen Blog, was willing to incur the wrath of other Caps fans (and got it). The Puck Daddy piece on the suspension (which Greg Wyshynki disagreed with. I agree with him that it should be more about "intent to injure" than an actual injury) had 362 comments last time I looked, 523 at the time I'm posting this. I read some of that and comments on TSN and Kukla's Korner.
I stand by my frustration in the "f-bomb" piece, but I may have been in haste when I said most Capitals fans were "amoral, hypocritical scumbags" (or was it "classless douchebags"?). I should have waited a bit for their reaction to the suspension, and included "whiny conspiracy theorists." Right, everything in the NHL is about the Penguins' success, and the league promotes Canadians and persecutes Russians, and...oh, whatever. The Capitals-Penguins-Red Wings infighting in comments ruins so many hockey sites. Not exactly something I've only just noticed, but it's so much worse now, with a Capitals player punished and Matt Cooke, a Penguins one not.
If I had money for hockey-related apparel right now, I'd want this excellent shirt by @ChiBlackhawks. The Cafe Press store for it is here. Puck Daddy should pick up on this one; it's more entertaining than the Ryan Miller "American Made" shirt highlighted today.
Now, a few words on tonight, and a much worse hit, hopefully not in terms of injury, but definitely in terms of "intent to injure." Here's the TSN game recap. There's nothing in the "Top Headlines" box on NHL.com about the questionable acts in the game (well, you can't post a big story about someone getting tossed out of game, when they weren't). Puck Daddy posted James Wisniewski's cheapshot on Brent Seabrook after Seabrook hit Corey Perry here: "Down goes Seabrook, out goes Wisniewski?". At his blog, Ryan Lambert (who was on my wrath list the other day, but he doesn't mention goaltending here since that was hardly the issue in the game [and oh, didn't Blackhawks fans going into it think that Corey Crawford's first NHL start this season--he's usually with the Rockford IceHogs--was what we needed to worry about, along with Campbell's absence?], posted "The Ducks Remain Hockey's Most Charming Franchise". Much appreciated.
Wisniewski's hit got a mere two minutes for charging, and the Hawks didn't even get a power play because of what Duncan Keith did after the hit, and...then there was nonsense later in the game with a non-call on the Ducks (even if Brent Sopel may have been diving, a bit), resulting in an immediate goal for them. And...oh, so much crappiness. Either you saw it or you can read the pieces above. I'm exhausted. Only high point, besides two goals by the Hawks, and Crawford (mostly) not being blameworthy for the loss, was Nick Boynton (former Duck), in his first game as a Blackhawk, fighting Wisniewski (former Blackhawk, and hopefully this game killed off any remaining fond feelings Hawks fans had for Wiz), seconds from the end of the game. The Blackhawks could have made this a much more vicious game, but didn't. More commentary about all this when the dust has settled a bit...(ETA: good articles from James Mirtle and Bob McKenzie on this, the latter calling it the "Grand Slam of Illegal Hits.")
This piece has been too polite, so how about throwing in a: FUCK YOU, YOU ABSOLUTE FUCKING DUMBASS. (Random Internet idiot--this is what happens when I search trending topics, in this case "Wisniewski.")
and some lines I copied down during the Blackhawks game broadcast on WGN 720, where I heard the announcers, Troy Murray especially, get angrier than I've ever heard them:
it is an absolute jokeit's a farce
how many times do you see me get this worked up?
ARE YOU KIDDING ME!
THEY HAVE ABSOLUTELY LET THIS HOCKEY GAME GET OUT OF HAND
ARE YOU KIDDING ME!
pushing and shoving have ensued, we may get a fracas
I CAN'T BELIEVE THE REFS HAVE LET THE GAME OUT OF HAND
I HAVE NEVER SEEN ANYTHING LIKE THIS
WHAT AN ABSOLUTE JOKE
one of the strangest and most poorly officiated games we've ever seen
a disgraceful end to a hockey game
a disgracefully officiated hockey game