Takes and trash talk from both ALL sides of the NHL's most obscure PATHETIC* rivalry

* Thanks, Kevin Lowe!

Friday, March 14, 2008

What to do about Stompy?

Ah, Pronger, you magnificent bastard, you certainly have a way of pissing off the world, don't you? Fans and imaginations everywhere have chastised the NHL's soft policy on "suspending Chris Pronger", apparently for not having the same level of YouTube clairvoyance as your average Pronger-hater. Whether or not Pronger intended to sidestep or stomp a fallen Ryan Kesler, none of that can be answered on the video without a major dose of assumption ("Well, if you know that Chris Pronger always tries to hurt everyone, then it's conclusive"). While I know that sort of assumption is fine for Pronger-haters, it's certainly not good enough for the league's disciplinarian to act on, especially for a high-profile player like Pronger. Pronger doesn't even have a history of stomping; his suspensions in Anaheim have been about elbowing puck-carriers.

As Bob McKenzie notes, there's just not enough evidence in the video to suspend Pronger, just enough to suspect him. Still, there is whine across North America for Pronger's justice, so what's Colin Campbell to do? He could (and probably will) avoid the issue, but if he wanted to, he could take preventative action so that Pronger couldn't be off-camera on the ice again. Have a press conference where it's announced that Pronger will be on constant surveillance, so that any future suspendable brutality that "Pronger's always getting away with" won't be missed again. It's a win-win-win-win (assuming I somehow win too).


The dedicated Chris Pronger camera

Gathering evidence for a suspension, one elbow at a time.

Note: The cloud-koopa technology shown here might not be available for several years, and the camera-on-a-fishing-pole idea might be ill-conceived. But the general concept still works.

Dedicate a camera to stay on Pronger for an entire game, no matter what city he's in, and allow overly agitated Pronger-haters to subscribe to that broadcast. Concerned "stomping watchdogs" can subscribe to these live feeds on a pay-per-view basis, and if they feel there's something suspension-worthy to report, they can call 1-800-TELL-ON-PRONGER and tattle with high-definition video evidence to a very sympathetic answering machine. All proceeds will help fund the cloning of Ryan Kesler's endangered leg.

ProngerCam--it may not appease the haters, but it's at least an active response to their bloodlust--yay or nay?

57 comments:

Anonymous said...

"Youtube or it never happened" doesn't apply to real life, particularly when questions of intent are always 100% subjective.

Suspensions were handed out well before every NHL game was televised, not to mention actual criminal justice has run for centuries without video evidence.

The fact that there *is* video evidence here just makes it all the more compelling.

Earl Sleek said...

Fine, anonymous, we can make it a dedicated referee, if you'd like to suspend Pronger using old-school techniques. I'm just saying the league needs more than the video that exists to suspend Pronger.

Anonymous said...

What does it need? A signed confession? High-def with director's commentary?

No video ever proves intent conclusively. Suspensions have never required that.

Earl Sleek said...

What does it need? A signed confession? High-def with director's commentary?

How about an eye-witness, preferably one not associated with either team?

Does that exist?

Niekon said...

How about an eye-witness, preferably one not associated with either team?

Does that exist?


That would be the refs from what little I recall of the game... and there was no call on the play. So must not have happened... or were all four of the zebras that busy to not notice the three players in that corner of the rink?

I'm just getting a good laugh out of the Pronger-haters... all the assumptions that just because it's Pronger then he must be guilty, nevermind that many of them never even saw the extremely poor quality video on YouTube. So unless someone has posted up a higher quality video from another angle that is definitive, if the skate don't fit you must acquit

Anonymous said...

That would be the refs from what little I recall of the game... and there was no call on the play. So must not have happened...

So the video was... manufactured by the CIA? And it's somehow more credible that Kesler just made the whole thing up?

Nor does it matter if the witnesses are from one team or the other. They're entitled to give their side of the story.

Earl Sleek said...

So the video was... manufactured by the CIA?

No, it's what exists, and there's plenty of room for interpretation.

Are you the same anonymous as before (the one who said we don't need no YouTube)? This is getting confusing.

Here's a question (as I'm someone who didn't see the game): If Pronger's stomp was obvious enough to be suspended, did the Canucks ever try to retaliate or react or challenge Pronger on behalf of one-legged Kesler? Or did they have to wait to find out about it too?

Sure, every side can tell their story, but it's damn predictable.

Kesler: he stomped me.
Pronger: no I didn't.
Random Canuck: yes he did.
Random Duck: no he didn't.

RudyKelly said...

Can I just say that I think it would be funny if Pronger had to wear that chin guard all the time? He'd be like a dog with a cone around its head.

...

Okay, go back to your discussion.

Niekon said...

Here's a question (as I'm someone who didn't see the game): If Pronger's stomp was obvious enough to be suspended, did the Canucks ever try to retaliate or react or challenge Pronger on behalf of one-legged Kesler? Or did they have to wait to find out about it too?

There was no retaliation or challenge made by any of the Canucks on Pronger after the alleged stomp. If there was then the FSN crew totally missed that as well as the stomp... and they tend to go right for those shots so Heyward can talk about who got the free shots in on who...

Then again... I could have missed it during my drinking session that evening celebrating the early lead in the game.
Speaking of which... corned beef... cabbage... potatoes... and a hockey game tomorrow evening. What can be better? Oh that's right... a fresh keg of Guinness on tap ^_^

ok... enough side-tracking...

heed said...

there is new video of the incident. it was a stomp. pronger maybe an awesome hockey player but it still doesn't make him any less of a douche bag. check out tsn. the bloodlust of the canadian media will not be denied!!!! i would also like to state that the canadian media covers the nhl to the nth degree.

PPP said...

The 'stumble' defence isn't that rock-solid either.

I understand not suspending him because it's just as easy to think that the angel slipped and was trying to get his balance as it is to think that he was perfectly balanced and stomped Kesler.

But...it's not hard to assume that Pronger, based on his history, wasn't trying to injure Kesler because, face it, he's a dirty player Sleek.

PPP said...

i would also like to state that the canadian media covers the nhl to the nth degree.

Isn't it awesome though :)

PPP said...

Earl - here is the vid:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bt5rBWarx6A

That's a stomping.

RudyKelly said...

Haha, he stomped on his leg. He did it because Kessler was holding him, but still. This is obviously a conspiracy to Anaheim in the playoffs, because everyone knows the league needs the ratings that are sure to come when Anaheim is involved.

(I'm kidding, nobody gives a fuck about Anaheim. I'm like 20 minutes from there and I'm always surprised when I see it still exists.)

heed said...

can someone explain to me why the average american nhl fan gets so annoyed with the canadian media? it is pretty clear to me that the majority of you rely on it to get your hockey fix. much like i am forever grateful to the american media for giving me my nfl fix. i watch that shit from 8 in the morning to 9 at night every damn sunday.

Anonymous said...

Seems like the 2nd video shows intent. Can it overturn the initial ruling? On another note, how come nobody is mentioning that in addition to Kesler trying to interfere with Pronger, he seems to take a mighty high swing with his skate to the back of Pronger. If Pronger wasn't so tall and he wasn't facing the boards we could have had another Zednik incident. No one seems to question the possibility of intent to injure with that high leg swing from a person who plays "with an edge." I do think Pronger should be suspended though. Probably not as long as Simon, maybe 10-15 games? Didn't the Ducks win all the suspended Pronger games in the playoffs anyway? That's what MAB is there for. Sort of.

Earl Sleek said...

But...it's not hard to assume that Pronger, based on his history, wasn't trying to injure Kesler because, face it, he's a dirty player Sleek.

The question I'm dealing with today isn't whether Pronger's a dirty player, or whether leg-stomping is deplorable, but really can the league suspend him just based on this (same) new angle?

It's still a case of a guy putting his foot down on another fallen player who has his legs wrapped around his. A guy who has never been a stomper, who didn't go out of his way to attack anyone, with no real response from the opposing team or the referees.

I'm no lawyer, but I think I could defend this accusation pretty handily. Maybe Pronger's guilty, but I certainly don't think he'd be found as such based on just this.

can someone explain to me why the average american nhl fan gets so annoyed with the canadian media?

Usually it's bias, but I don't have any issue with it, really. I'm a TSN devotee.

RudyKelly said...

I get annoyed with the Canadian media because they treat hockey with the same reverence that the American media treats baseball. It's stupid on both sides and it prevents an intelligent discussion of the issues of the game.

Also, they talk funny.

Earl Sleek said...

I should be fair and note that McKenzie has changed his tune with the release of the new video, though to me it's still the same story (and heck, the same camera angle, right?)--a foot comes down in the process of disentanglement, and you've still got to assume intent.

Stupid Canadian media; can't even support my position for 24 hours :P

Mike in OC said...

The new vedio is a bit more compelling but I still see no intent to injure. Lets be honest if he intended to injure Kessler he could have done it. Kessler was totally exposed. I also see that the contact was initiated by Kessler himself. If Kessler is not tieing up Prongers legs, Pronger skates off without incedent, and you do not see a possible stomp as Pronger is trying to free his leg.

My question is this:
Can the NHL reverse thier decision as Mckenzie did?

Earl Sleek said...

Can the NHL reverse thier decision as Mckenzie did?

Sure they can. You're talking about a league that changes rules and opinions all the damn time.

I don't think they will, though. It's still not a very strong leg to stand on (pun very much intended), especially for a reversed decision announcement.

Based on what I know about the NHL, my guess is they'll probably never speak about this incident again.

Mike in OC said...

Based on what I know about the NHL, my guess is they'll probably never speak about this incident again.

Thats a relief, now how do we get the rest of Canada (and Detroit) to follow suit?

heed said...

who wants to place bets on whether pronger takes a cross check to that plastic cage before the end of this season?

Earl Sleek said...

Heck, he's already been punched silly with the cage, most everybody wants a piece of Pronger. I wouldn't take that bet before StompGate, so I'm certainly not going to take it now.

Patty (in Dallas) said...

At least in the new, closer angle, the score bar isn't obscuring Pronger's head, so the "he wasn't even looking down" defense is seeming flimsy now.

But I guess the "Kesler asked for it" defense is a little harder to refute, since we can't hear anything.

Anonymous said...

I wish the league would just suspend him already. Then everybody else would just shut the hell up about it. An inferior Ducks team made it to the conference finals in 2006 without Pronger, then got booted by the team with Pronger. Pronger was suspended twice last year and that Ducks team still won it all. Suspend him now, and if the Ducks are still in the playoffs when it's over, he'll come back rested and pissed off. If the Ducks get knocked out of the playoffs without him, well at least they won last year.

Earl Sleek said...

Then everybody else would just shut the hell up about it.

I wouldn't hold my breath that this comes true. Even if he gets suspended, then the cry will be "not enough games".

No, the only real way to get fans to shut up about Pronger is to (a) have one of their players do something worse, or (b) trade Pronger to their team.

Whatever, though. At this point, it's almost a steady stream of noise.

Morbo said...

Hater-aid, the official sponsor of Pronger's right foot. I've been debating what name to put on the back of my white 07 jersey. I'm thinking "Stompy" would be good.

Cloud-koopa cam. I think you're on to something Earl. Quick, trademark that bad boy. Don't forget to lock up the licensing and merchandising rights.

kevin said...

Cloud-koopa cam. I think you're on to something Earl. Quick, trademark that bad boy. Don't forget to lock up the licensing and merchandising rights.

If Earl can get the Lakitu rights away from Nintendo, he's even more powerful than I thought.

Earl Sleek said...

Here's The Hat explaining the league's non-response:

Unofficially, the reason Pronger escaped supplementary discipline is that the video footage of their tie-up was too vague and inconclusive. The feeling was that while Pronger could have pressed his skate down on Kesler's leg, he also could have simply been trying to pull his leg away from the scissors-hold that Kesler had him in; and that in finally freeing his leg, it jerked back down as a reflex. As in any court of law, reasonable doubt was what prevented Pronger from getting whacked with yet another NHL suspension.

Ah, reasonable doubt. How long until he changes his mind? :)

Chris in Torrance said...

Has Colin Campbell released any kind of statement explaining his reasoning one way or the other?

Earl Sleek said...

No, but that's not new. Campbell is taking heat from a lot of markets for not really explaining any of his suspension decisions.

Apparently, the NHL feels no need to rationalize any of its actions or non-actions.

Earl Sleek said...

More reaction, courtesy of the OC Register blog. Nothing too inspiring, but there are noncommittal quotes from both Pronger and Carlyle.

Hat tip to Alanah at Canucks & Beyond.

Aaron said...

Why does intent matter so much? Correct me if I'm wrong but high sticking is a penalty with or without intent because you are supposed to be responsible for your equipment at all times. Pronger wasn't flying through the air like Olli Jokinen was. The argument for it being an innocent play seems to be that Pronger was only trying to regain his balance, but at what point is it better for Pronger to fall down for 2 seconds than to step on someone while wearing a blade on the bottom of his foot? To me, intent is the difference between a 10 game suspension and a 30 game suspension, not the difference between a 10 game suspension and no suspension. And I also think past history should play at least some kind of a role in these decisions as obviously Pronger has a history of dirty play and suspensions. At some point doesn't he have to face a lengthy suspension (including playoff games) if he can't find a way to control his behavior?

Earl Sleek said...

Why does intent matter so much?

It's a higher-level question than the NHL is probably addressing today, but I'd think it matters. If a player is intending to injure, that's different than an inadvertent injury, no?

If you don't think intent should matter very much, then why should previous suspension history matter? If it's just a matter of what happened, then it shouldn't really matter who's committed the infraction, yet a huge argument being thrown around today is "It's Pronger, thus he deserves it, no matter how shaky the evidence."

I dunno, really. There's way too scattered an opinion on this, I think. It's really difficult to determine what people want suspensions based upon, other than to get Pronger.

Heather B. said...

Your argument that people would feel differently if Pronger was on their team is ridiculous. You should really try to avoid putting words in people's mouths like that. I've hated guys who played for my team before, I have problems with a couple of my guys now, and I probably will in the future too.

Your argument that the lack of retaliation somehow says something about the play is even dumber. None of the Sabres retaliated when Laraque scrambled Paetsch's brains. It doesn't make the hit any less dangerous it just means that the Sabres didn't retaliate.

What's so scattered here? Pronger has a history, he did something dangerous that another player with a history did and got a 30 game suspension for, and he did it while he was looking directly at the other player involved. People think that deserves a suspension. It's not really that hard to grasp, Earl.

Patty (in Dallas) said...

It's really difficult to determine what people want suspensions based upon, other than to get Pronger.

Oh my gosh, that's hilarious! People are just out to get him! That's a good one, Earl.

Earl Sleek said...

Well, you think my reasoning is dumb, I think comparing this as an equivalent act to Chris Simon is dumb.

Word is Pronger's getting up to ten games today. Good whining, everyone.

Pookie said...

Earl, I'm sure you've seen the article on suspensions in the News & Observer, so I'm sure you've seen this quote from Colin Campbell wherein he explains how the League approaches suspensions:

"We try to look at it as an independent, individual situation: Is a player wronging another player? We don't care what team it is. All we care about is, did he cross the line and is he a repeat offender?"

Please explain to me, given those last two points, how Pronger is off the hook here.

Did he cross the line? YES. I know you refuse to admit anything until you see the scars on Kesler's legs, but the rest of the world has accepted that in this case, absolutely, Pronger crossed the line.

Is he a repeat offender? YES. When Simon got his 30 game suspension for doing the same thing Pronger did here, he and Pronger had the same number of prior suspensions. (I suspect you're going to respond to this implying I'm a dithering idiot since Simon's suspension for stick swinging can't compare to poor, misunderstood Pronger's phantom suspensions for plays that weren't called penalties, but please, we've heard that enough already.) The fact is, Pronger is the second-most suspended player in League history. That's the very definition of repeat offender.

Earl Sleek said...

but the rest of the world has accepted that in this case, absolutely, Pronger crossed the line.

This is kind of putting words in other people's mouths too, but whatever. Hopefully next time somebody steps in a bad spot everyone comes back to remember how strongly they condemned a guy on March 14th.

Heather B. said...

Well, you think my reasoning is dumb, I think comparing this as an equivalent act to Chris Simon is dumb.

No, I think you're as biased as anyone else but the only who's pretending to not be.

Word is Pronger's getting up to ten games today. Good whining, everyone.

If whining is what it take to get the league to treat everyone the same and discourage unnecessary, dangerous play hey, whatever.

RudyKelly said...

I think everyone needs to calm down a little bit. Is Chris Pronger a douche bag? Yep. Does it look like he intentionally stepped on Ryan Kesler's leg? I think so. Was it as bad as Chris Simon? No, because Pronger looked like he was just pushed off Kessler in the heat of the moment while Chris Simon looked down, saw Ruutu's leg, and then stepped on it. I think Pronger should get around 6 games (has anyone considered the idea that Chris Simon's suspension was way too much?), and if he gets 10, okay. It's not the Teapot-Dome Scandal or anything, though.

Heather B. said...

Rudy, come on! You're spoiling all the Earl baiting fun! :-D

But fine... Moving on!

Aaron said...

Reread what I said Sleek. I wasn't saying intent doesn't matter at all, I just don't see how it is necessary to level a suspension. Intent should be the difference between a short suspension and a long one. Regardless of whether he intended to injure or step on Kessler, he clearly lost control of himself and put another player in a dangerous position.

As far as his history is concerned, here's why I think it matters. You seem to be saying that we shouldn't assume there was any intent, but when you look at Pronger's history I think the opposite is true. If you want to complain about how that is unfair I'd remind you that no one forced Pronger to commit acts worthy of suspensions in the past. It may be unfair in this case if he truly had no intent, but that's what happens when you have a well earned reputation for dirty play. If this was Brian Rafalski instead of Chris Pronger we probably aren't having this conversation, just like you could also say that if it wasn't Chris Simon who had stepped on Ruutu it wouldn't have been a 30 game suspension. If Pronger wanted the benefit of the doubt in these situations perhaps he should have reconsidered spending the first 15 years of his career throwing out elbows and other assorted cheap shots.

As far as a 10 game suspension goes, I guess that's probably pretty fair if that's what it comes down to but I'll also say this: pretty convenient to get him back right before the playoffs start. If the NHL ever wants people to take their suspensions seriously, if they really want players to think twice before they do this kind of stuff, they have to start taking away playoff games at the same rate they take away regular season games. At this point in the year a 10 game suspension for Chris Pronger just means he'll be rested for the postseason and doesn't really hurt Pronger or the Ducks.

Earl Sleek said...

I think you're as biased as anyone else but the only who's pretending to not be.

I don't know who thinks I'm hiding any bias; I guess people who are visiting here for the first time and aren't bothering to read anything I write (psst, I'm a Ducks fan, not just a guy who constantly writes about the Ducks because I'm indifferent to them).

Still, I see the video with my biased eyes and say it's tough to determine intent or severity. That there's room for interpretation in the sole piece of evidence doesn't seem to matter much to others, though, as has been expressed a whole lot today.

We'll see where this ends up. I guess I'll have to open up a new thread so everyone can tell me how many more games he should have got (because, you know, it's Pronger; he never mis-steps).

Reread what I said Sleek. I wasn't saying intent doesn't matter at all, I just don't see how it is necessary to level a suspension.

I know I oversimplified your position, Aaron. It's been a hectic day. I also tried to manage a workday through all this nonsense, with some success, actually.

If this was Brian Rafalski instead of Chris Pronger we probably aren't having this conversation.

Well, I certainly wouldn't be talking about it.

Frisby said...

Wait a minute, are you saying that the league actually listened to our whining? If that's the case then we need to start whining about the shootout, 3 point games, division winners automatically making the playoffs with home ice advantage, road teams wearing white, and last but not least, ticket prices.

I feel for you, Earl, I really do. But at least people are just calling for Captain Elbows to be suspended. Last year after the Cam incident I kept hearing people calling for Elias' head and Brodeur's knees.

Aaron said...

Fair enough Sleek. I fully expect you do be biased in this and defend "ya boy" but I think you are getting a little lost in the details. Since you can never prove intent with 100% certainty how can that be a requirement for a suspension?

I know you don't want to hear it, but when a guy has received 7 suspensions in 15 seasons and is still doing things like this I think it's pretty clear those suspensions didn't really do anything to impact his actions on the ice. At some point the league has to throw the book at him to protect the other players in the league, who all have the right to compete without facing cheap shots and dirty play. It would be a shame if the only reason he avoids such a stiff penalty in this case is because the playoffs are right around the corner. If anything that seems like a great opportunity for the league to make a real statement about Pronger and others like him. But I think we all know how well this league does the whole "seizing an opportunity" thing.

Morbo said...

There's only one way to settle this.

Stompy vs Scissor Sister kessler. They have to duel each other in Guitar Hero. End controversy.

Earl Sleek said...

Since you can never prove intent with 100% certainty how can that be a requirement for a suspension?

It's not a requirement; there's been suspensions I'm sure where there's been zero intent.

But still, there's a reason why the league suspends Jamie McClennan in the '07 playoffs for a stick across Franzen's chest and doesn't suspend Justin Williams in the '06 playoffs for a stick in Koivu's eye. One is considered a deliberate attempt to injure; the other is considered a follow-through with an unfortunate injury that followed.

Part of that determination is deciding whether a player went out of their way to harm a player, or whether that was somewhat unavoidable and part of regular play. Chris Simon went out of his way to put a stomp on Ruutu's leg, while Chris Pronger stepped on a leg that was at the moment entangled with his own.

It's possible that he meant to do it, just like it's possible that Justin Williams meant to strike Koivu, but I don't know if it's the league's job to make those kind of character determinations, at least without more evidence (an audible threat, or a referee's indication, or maybe even a gloating grin).

I don't mind that the NHL should make examples of multiple offenders, but I'd prefer them to happen when the league can say with more certainty that Pronger meant to cross the line. There's a relatively flimsy piece of evidence to stand behind in this case, I think, to make that sort of statement suspension.

I know you refuse to admit anything until you see the scars on Kesler's legs...

I should mention, btw, that if Kesler had no mark on his leg this morning, I'd fully expect him to create one on his own. Just a sense I have about the competitive sportsmanship of Ryan Kesler.

Sherry said...

I should mention, btw, that if Kesler had no mark on his leg this morning, I'd fully expect him to create one on his own. Just a sense I have about the competitive sportsmanship of Ryan Kesler.

With what, a Sharpie? Because I don't think he'd be willing to actually injure himself considering he's one of only a few players actually scoring on his team right now.

I wasn't saying intent doesn't matter at all, I just don't see how it is necessary to level a suspension. Intent should be the difference between a short suspension and a long one.

It's true, because while in some cases where intent is clear or not (Yes for Simon and Ruutu and no for Williams and Koivu) in a play like what happened between Pronger and Kesler it's not glaringly obvious if Pronger did it on purpose and going by his word would probably not be very helpful. If the league is serious about getting dangerous plays out of hockey then intent shouldn't matter at all when it comes to discipline. Regardless of whether or not it was malicious or not, it was a dangerous play and Pronger should have been more careful and something very dangerous could have happened so why shouldn't he be punished hard for it considering he seems to have a pattern of behaviour?

And Simon said today that he thought there was definitely a double standard which I don't think is hard to dispute. So as fans of the game, why shouldn't we whine about it? Isn't that part of what blogging is about?

Earl Sleek said...

Good points, Sherry (and I believe you're now the fan of the 30th team to chime in!).

Regardless of whether or not it was malicious or not, it was a dangerous play and Pronger should have been more careful and something very dangerous could have happened so why shouldn't he be punished hard for it considering he seems to have a pattern of behaviour?

If they want to suspend based on that, how much responsiblity does Ryan Kesler have? He carries some responsibility for the dangerous play.

As an aside, I finally got around to actually watching the Simon incident at Covered in Oil (yes, I'm an irresponsible blogger who cares very little about what happens in the east), and boy did that guy get shafted. Still, that's why it's tough to just make a blanket "He stomped the guy" association with the Simon incident; there are several relevant differences:

1. Stoppage in play.
2. In front of the officials trying to separate them.
3. Barely had any reason to be near Ruutu at all.
4. Seemed to be on good footing.

Am I missing any?

So as fans of the game, why shouldn't we whine about it? Isn't that part of what blogging is about?

I think I'm going to answer this one in a new post. Thanks for the segue.

Sherry said...

(and I believe you're now the fan of the 30th team to chime in!).

I wasn't going to but I find it baffling how people still think that the stomp wasn't suspension worthy.

If they want to suspend based on that, how much responsiblity does Ryan Kesler have? He carries some responsibility for the dangerous play.

That gets brought up when people are assessing hits from behind and I would say part of the reason why some of those hits don't get lengthier (or any) suspensions. Even with the voluntary assumption of risk that comes with playing this game, you can't reasonably say that Kesler was looking to get injured on the play.

Simon might have gotten it bad but I don't think he got shafted. He did have a reason to be near Ruutu, they were both at the benches. He'll only get shafted if Pronger walks away with nothing (In that situation, many commentators were saying how Ruutu is hardly an angel himself but that probably shouldn't go into determining anything).

Since I did bring up pattern of behaviour, I will also say that there are a lot of dangerous plays that the league doesn't bother reviewing on a given night. And it's true, Pronger gets extra because he's a "superstar" and because of his rap sheet but that doesn't necessarily mean it's unwarranted, just that the league needs to do a better job of paying attention. I also think it's extremely lazy of the league to rely on other people cleaning up the footage. Shouldn't they be able to do that themselves?

Sherry said...

And uh, I apologize if I was getting all legal-y there...I'm studying for a law mid-term at the same time.

kevin said...

you can't reasonably say that Kesler was looking to get injured on the play

I think he was saying that it was Kesler's attempted drop toe-hold on Pronger that started the whole thing.

Earl Sleek said...

who wants to place bets on whether pronger takes a cross check to that plastic cage before the end of this season?

Depending on what gets announced tomorrow, I suddenly want to take this bet.

Itlan said...

When are players going to learn to stay away from Pronger?

Mr. Plank said...

Still, that's why it's tough to just make a blanket "He stomped the guy" association with the Simon incident; there are several relevant differences:

1. Stoppage in play.
2. In front of the officials trying to separate them.
3. Barely had any reason to be near Ruutu at all.
4. Seemed to be on good footing.


Game, set, match. The two instances are completely different. Pronger sits out the rest of the season, and is back in time for the playoffs. I don't like the guy (actually I despise him), but the punishment fits the crime.

The big thing that gets to me is the way the NHL handled the situation. Didn't they say they wouldn't suspend Pronger at first, then turned a 180 after the "new" video evidence was found? Before making public statements all forms of evidence should be pursued- then you talk.