Tag:Chris Neil
Posted on: February 25, 2012 11:20 pm
Edited on: February 26, 2012 3:04 pm

Video: Kyle Turris headshot on Joe Corvo

By: Adam Gretz

Ottawa Senators forward Kyle Turris is not an overly physical player. In 36 games this season he's been credited with just 16 hits (and yes, I'm aware of how flawed and biased the "hit" statistic can be), which is why it's kind of surprising to see him involved in a questionable hit to the head that may receive some extra attention from the NHL.

Late in the third period of the Senators 5-3 loss to the Bruins, Turris caught Boston defenseman Joe Corvo with what appeared to be an elbow to the head, resulting in a two-minute minor for boarding and a pretty incredible rant from Bruins announcer Jack Edwards.

(Also featured: Chris Neil's big hit on Johnny Boychuk earlier in the period.)

The NHL looks at everything, so this hit is definitely going to be reviewed, it's just a matter of whether or not Brendan Shanahan and Co. feel it's worthy of additional punishment.

These two teams meet again Tuesday night in Boston.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @agretz on Twitter.
Posted on: December 7, 2011 10:14 pm
Edited on: December 7, 2011 10:45 pm

Alex Ovechkin's 'spear' and highlight goal

By: Adam Gretz

Pretty eventful night for Alex Ovechkin on Wednesday night during his team's 5-3 win over the Ottawa Senators, which was the result of a four-goal third period rally by the Capitals.

During the second period, Ottawa's Chris Neil delivered a heavy, clean hit on Ovechkin near the corner boards. As the two players started to skate up the ice to get themselves back into the play, Neil appeared to get speared by Ovechkin somewhere in the midsection (whether the stick hit him in the stomach or the groin area isn't easily seen) and dropped to the ice.

He immediately went to the locker room for a brief period of time before later returning to the game.

You can easily argue that Neil did some work in an effort to sell a potential call to the officials (and it wouldn't be the first time he's been guilty of that), and you can also easily argue that, perhaps, the "spearing" motion was simply an extension of Ovechkin's skating motion. But even if that was the case (and I don't think it was ... it was most likely a retaliation following a big hit) players must have control of their stick at all times, and a penalty probably should have been called.

According to the NHL's rule for "spearing," a penalty is to be issued for "stabbing an opponent with the point of the stick blade, whether contact is made or not."

Ovechkin was not penalized, while Neil was issued a two-minute for diving. Here's the, via Kukla's Korner, for you to come to your own conclusions.

For the remainder of the game Ovechkin heard a chorus of boos every time he touched the puck.

He ended up getting the last laugh, of course, not only because his team came out on top, but also because he scored the type of goal we've been waiting for him to score all season, creating space for himself and leaving defenders in his dust before firing a puck past Senators goalie Craig Anderson.

That's the Ovechkin we're looking for.

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

Posted on: September 28, 2011 11:17 pm
Edited on: September 29, 2011 12:31 am

Video: Brendan Smith hit on Ben Smith

By: Adam Gretz

Thanks to Wednesday's preseason game between Chicago and Detroit, which the Blackhawks won 4-3, Brendan Shanahan has yet another hit to look at and decide if the hammer once again needs to dropped.

With the game tied, 3-3, early in the third period, Chicago's Ben Smith carried the puck into the offensive zone and tried to cut across the middle of the ice. At that point Detroit's Brendan Smith, who is fighting for a roster spot, connected on a hit that resulted in his ejection from the game (as well as a match penalty), while Smith was clearly shaken up and needed assistance in getting off the ice.  According to Rule 48, the Match Penalty can be issued if the referee, "in his judgement, feels the player attempted to or deliberately injured his opponent with an illegal check to the head."

Here's the video:

Was the head the principal point of contact? Was the head targeted? Did the puck-carrier put himself in that position, making it impossible for the defender to avoid the contact? These are the questions that Shanahan will have to answer when it comes to handing out any potential discipline.

According to Chicago Sun Times reporter Adam Jahns, via Twitter, Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville said the referees said it's the type of hit that is trying to be taken out of the game. Again, from Jahns: "Both referees said that's a classic example of what we're talking about, that's the illegal hit. It's pretty black & white"

Here's what Red Wings head coach Mike Babcock had to say following the game:
"I don't doubt his shoulder hit his head. Is there any responsibility on the puck-carrier, toe-dragging, sliding sideways, to look after himself? Is there or no? It doesn't appear like there is anymore, is there? You come across the middle toe-dragging like this (has head down, looking at puck), jumping up, and you get dinged ... and I'm not saying our guy isn't guilty, because the shoulder hit his head ... you better not put yourself in those situations is what I would say. There will be a video report on it tomorrow, I'm sure."
Chris Neil avoided a suspension for a play that involved Toronto's Mikhail Grabovski on Tuesday night. We should find out soon enough whether or not Smith can as well. Based on the comments from Quenneville, it's not looking good for him.

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

Posted on: September 28, 2011 6:42 pm
Edited on: September 28, 2011 6:45 pm

No discipline for Chris Neil

By: Adam Gretz

During the third period of Toronto's 5-3 win over the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night Chris Neil and Mikhail Grabovski were involved in a colission in the neutral zone that drew the attention of Brendan Shanahan, the NHL's director of player safety.

Grabovski, who scored a shorthanded goal and added two assists during the Toronto win, left the game briefly following the hit but was able to return after being examined for concussion-like symptoms.

On Wednesday it was reported, via TSN, that Shanahan did in fact review the play, but ultimately decided that it was not a violation of rule 48 and will not hand out any punishment to Neil, who was not penalized during the game.

The play occurred mid-way through third period while Grabovski did not have possession of the puck. It was certainly a borderline play that is open to debate as to whether or not Neil intentionally hit Grabovski, or if it was simply an accidental collission.

Grabovski was Toronto's third-leading scorer last season finishing with 29 goals and 29 assists in 81 games.

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

Posted on: September 27, 2011 10:31 pm
Edited on: September 27, 2011 10:37 pm

Video: Chris Neil hit on Mikhail Grabovski

By: Adam Gretz

During the third period of the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-3 win over the Ottawa Senators on Tuesday night Chris Neil and Mikhail Grabovski were involved in a collision that will very likely get the attention of the NHL's new player safety boss, Brendan Shanahan, who has been giving out suspensions like they're burning in a hole in his pocket over the past week.

Based on what we've seen so far from Shanahan it's clear there is a new level of transparency when it comes to discipline from the league, with each suspension being accompanied by a video describing the play in detail and why he issued a certain punishment. The response from fans and media has been overwhelmingly positive, but there's also been a sense of, let's wait and see until he has to deal with something that's borderline.

The Neil-Grabovski play, which you can see below, might be that type of play depending on which team (or group of fans) that you ask.

Neil was not penalized for the hit, even though it took place while Grabovski did not have possession of the puck. The question becomes whether or not this was an accidental colission, or if Neil targeted Grabovski's head and violated rule 48.1, which could result in him becoming the next player to get a couple of games off without pay.

Grabovski left the game briefly and went to the locker room, but eventually returned to the Maple Leafs bench. He scored a shorthanded goal and added two assists during the game.

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

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com