Blog Entry

Sabres' Myers avoids suspension for hit on Zubrus

Posted on: November 17, 2011 10:21 am
Edited on: November 17, 2011 9:28 pm

By Brian Stubits

Welcome back to the ice, Tyler Myers.

The Buffalo Sabres defenseman who was struggling so much to start this season that he was a healthy scratch two games ago apparently received the message. In Wednesday's 5-3 loss to the Devils, Myers had without question his best offensive performance of the season with two of Buffalo's three goals.

He also put his name on the list of debatable hits with a shot on Dainius Zubrus.

Every hit that is questionable is scrutinized now, that's the climate of the NHL under Brendan Shanahan's rule. So this is today's debatable hit: suspension or not?

The answer is no. After reviewing the hit, Shanahan elected no further discipline was needed on Myers, according to Katie Strang of ESPN New York.

After review, the NHL's Department of Player Safety determined that while Zubrus' head was the principal point of contact, it was not targeted. The disciplinary team, led by Brendan Shanahan, felt Myers attempted a full body-check but caught Zubrus while he was reaching low to play the puck.

Shanahan still plans on calling Myers to explain his decision since the call was considered borderline.
Consider, too, that Myers is not in the repeat offender category. That weighs in Shanahan's decisions, as does the fact that Zubrus was not injured as a result of the hit, just a little shaken. Thus, we end at the result of no discipline.

"I didn't like the look of it," Devils coach Pete DeBoer said. "It looked to me like one of the head shots they are trying to get out of the game."

Sabres coach Lindy Ruff saw it differently.

"If you want to play physical, and the guy's stretched out and bent over, sometimes bad things can happen," he said.

More NHL Discipline News Here

The Associated Press contributed to this report

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter.


Since: May 25, 2009
Posted on: November 20, 2011 10:50 pm

Sabres' Myers avoids suspension for hit on Zubrus

We've finally seen Shanahan's ability as a real enforcer when it came to suspending someone of real value to a team.

No matter how you read, interpret, slice or dice it, the rules specifically state contact on goalies must be avoided. One of the most idiotic polls is the one posted here where when asked whether goalies should be "fair game" a mjority said yes.

This ranks right up there with the EU banning labels on water stating that it prevents dehydration when taken.

You see, if you tell a bunch of morons that the sun really doesn't come up in the east, eventually they start believing it. Why else would any one person deny the simple written facts in the rule book?

In Tyler Myers case, the kid will eventually get to the point where his physical game will match his size.

Shanahan blew the Lucic ruling and set a bad precedent. To warn others that similar actions would result in suspensions is a lack of leadership in his postion and a complete failure too early in his tenure. When you make a mistake, make it on the side of the policy you are trying to establish, not on the side of indecision. 

Since: Dec 7, 2008
Posted on: November 18, 2011 12:41 pm

Sabres' Myers avoids suspension for hit on Zubrus

Zubrus was playing the puck, Myers was not. You play the puck, not the other guys head.

He hit a guy in hockey Cry Hockey is supposed to be played by nice little boys and girls Cry

Get over it. Hitting is a part of hockey. If you don't like it, don't watch. Meyers tried to rub him out of the play which would have made playing the puck much easier. It's unfortunate that he hit Zubrus in the head, but Zubrus could have avoided it by not reaching for the puck. Not all of the blame goes to the hitter. Sometimes it goes to the hittee as well.

Since: Nov 18, 2008
Posted on: November 18, 2011 10:50 am

Sabres' Myers avoids suspension for hit on Zubrus

Not surprised by this decision. Shanahan would have lynched if he suspended Myers after not suspending Lucic.

Since: Apr 16, 2007
Posted on: November 18, 2011 9:51 am

Sabres' Myers avoids suspension for hit on Zubrus

Shanahan is still a piece of crap for his decision on Miller.  The guy should not have this job.  He bought Lucic's BS?  That is just nuts.  Him not suspending  Myers does not make up for it.  Myers did not deserve a suspension.  Myers needs to play hockey until Nov 28th.  then we turn him loose.  Hit anything in black and gold that moves.   And drill them.  And their goalie. 

Since: Nov 3, 2010
Posted on: November 17, 2011 7:05 pm

Could Sabres' Myers face suspension for this hit?

Does this deserve a suspension? No. Will the judge, jury and executioner give him a suspension, Probably. Just my thoughts, but the King of Discipline is out of control.....

Since: Oct 24, 2006
Posted on: November 17, 2011 6:59 pm

Could Sabres' Myers face suspension for this hit?

Cmon...Can we really start playing hockey now? This stuff is really getting out of hand. You think he'd blow teo calls in a row against the Sabres? This is nothing....the other was a blown call

Since: Jul 1, 2010
Posted on: November 17, 2011 6:52 pm

Could Sabres' Myers face suspension for this hit?

This was in a gray area.   I don't think Myers did anything to deliberately target the head and I think he even made sure to get down a little bit as he's used to.    The league needs to address this, Myers is a beast, but a head shot is a head shot and I hope the league issues a warning to beasts like Scott, Chara, etc., that their massive frames are not an excuse in the future.    Size has run smaller players out of the league, and elbows and hits to the head have run others out of the league.   In the future, this hit has to be subject to supplemental discipline if they're serious about reducing these shots to the head.    Warn him informally and let him know that he just can't make that hit like that, doesn't matter how tall he is and how short the other forwards are.   Big guys are going to have to limit themselves to more careful body positioning, and, heaven forbid, use there sticks to break up a play first and foremost instead.

That being said, the league already made their decision.   No discipline, and I agree with that call for now.   I hope the issue is being explored further.

Since: Jun 22, 2008
Posted on: November 17, 2011 6:42 pm

Could Sabres' Myers face suspension for this hit?

no way there's a suspension. he didn't fling out his elbow at Zubrus. If Shanahan sits him for that, then he should be fired immediately.

Since: Oct 5, 2011
Posted on: November 17, 2011 2:19 pm

Could Sabres' Myers face suspension for this hit?

Yeah, this is the kinda shot that Chara has to worry about all the time.  And Zubrus is tall too.  No biggie, just our rough sport here.

Since: Nov 26, 2006
Posted on: November 17, 2011 1:29 pm

Could Sabres' Myers face suspension for this hit?

I think he should've gotten an elbowing minor and that shouldve been the end of it. I dont think he'll get a suspension. I dont think he should either. I think Shanny's case-by-case diatribes leave something to be desired.

However, I still think it's obvious Myers had no intention of playing the puck and could've executed a less dangerous body or hip check instead of leading with his shoulder and then extending his elbow to finish. At 0:31 you can see Myers turn his head and aim high on Zubrus and finish with is elbow. He was clearly aware of where Zubrus' head after looking to see where he was and was aiming for it. Enough with the size factor. If you can't control your body and make clean intelligent plays regardless of your own size than you shouldn't be in the NHL. Size can be good, but it can also be bad if you can't control own body and get caught in dangerous plays like this. Myers couldve simply used his bodysize alone to seal Zurbus off from the puck and played the puck skated back behind the net or passed out to a teammate.

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