Posted on: December 20, 2011 10:54 pm
Edited on: December 20, 2011 10:59 pm
By: Adam Gretz
PITTSBURGH -- One of the most talked about plays during Pittsburgh's 3-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday night was Deryk Engelland's hit (as seen in the above video) on Blackhawks forward Marcus Kruger in the first period. Even though Engelland was not penalized, it turned out to be a huge play in the game, and perhaps a decisive play.
Not only was it a questionable hit that will probably get a second look from the NHL, but the Penguins actually came away with a power play in the aftermath due to a fight between Engelland and Blackhawks forward John Scott, arguably the toughest and most intimidating heavyweight in the NHL. Both players were assessed five minute majors for fighting, while Scott picked up an additional instigator penalty as well as a 10-minute misconduct. The Penguins eventually scored on the ensuing power play thanks to Chris Kunitz's 12th goal of the season, and in a game that was decided by a single goal, that's an early (and huge) turning point.
Kruger was able to return to the game briefly, taking a couple of shifts throughout the remainder of the first period, but did not get a single shift over the final 40 minutes of regulation. After the game Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said, "He's doing OK now, but we'll see tomorrow, we'll have a better idea of how he's doing. Tough hit, high hit. Tough area, tough spot."
Even though Scott's instigator penalty put the Blackhawks down a man and resulted in a goal against, his teammates were quite accepting of the additional penalty he took in an effort to stick up for his teammate.
"We have to find a way to kill that off for him," said forward Viktor Stalberg. "That's why we have him in the lineup some nights, he did what he's supposed to do."
"I'm always going to stand up for my teammates," said Scott. "I'm going to do that everytime, no matter who it is. I think anybody else on the team would have done the same thing."
The question now becomes whether or not the NHL has an issue with Engelland's hit. The first angle is difficult to see how much, if any, contact was made with the head, but when you look at the second and third angles it becomes a little more clear that Kruger took a hit to the head.
"I'm sure they'll take a look at it," said Stalberg. "I think we felt like he left his feet a little bit there."
More NHL Discipline News Here
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Posted on: September 1, 2011 9:25 am
Edited on: September 1, 2011 9:25 am
By: Adam Gretz
A WRETCHED SUMMER Bruce Arthur of the National Post has an excellent column on an unbelieavably sad summer that has seen three player deaths in a span of just four months. Writers Arthur: "This shouldn’t be a political issue in the sport; it should be a human one. And at some point, some deadly serious questions have to be asked about the role of enforcers in hockey, if only to understand why these men are gone too soon. This has been an unspeakable summer, which is exactly why it needs to be talked about." The entire column is worth a read.
POST-NHL CONCERNS In the wake of Belak's death more than one player has taken to Twitter to talk about how difficult the transition is from playing to retirement. Said Brent Sopel, "It's true when you're gone from the NHL it's like you never played. We're all just pieces of meat." Former Phoenix Coyotes forward Tyson Nash shared this: "Ur entire life is dedicated to hockey and then one day it's all over and ur kicked to the curb! And the NHLPA does nothing to prepare u."
STALBERG AIMS FOR TOP-SIX ROLE Viktor Stalberg is looking to take one of the available spots on Chicago's top-two lines this season, saying he's going to do everything he can to earn more playing time. The speedy forward scored 12 goals in 77 games last season in his first season with Chicago.
HNIDY GOES TO THE RADIO BOOTH Former NHL defenseman Shane Hnidy announced his retirement on Wednesday and that he will also be taking over as a radio analyst for the Winnipeg Jets. He appeared in three regular season and three postseason games last year with the Stanley Cup champion Boston Bruins. In 550 career games he scored 16 goals to go with 55 assists as a member of the Ottawa Senators, Nashville Predators, Atlanta Thrashers, Anaheim Ducks, Minnesota Wild and Bruins.
Posted on: July 11, 2011 10:05 am
Edited on: July 11, 2011 3:42 pm
By: Adam Gretz
HANSON SIGNS WITH WASHINGTON: Christian Hanson, the son of Slap Shot's Dave Hanson, signed with the Washington Capitals over the weekend and is expected to compete for a roster spot with their minor league affiliate, the Hershey Bears, according to Katie Carrera of the Washington Post. The 25-year-old Hanson spent parts of the last three seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs and scored three goals in 42 career games. He appeared in six games last season and did not record a single point. He played most of the season with the Toronto Marlies of the AHL and scored 12 goals.
STALBERG RE-SIGNS WITH CHICAGO: The Chicago Blackhawks and restricted free agent Viktor Stalberg reached a two-year agreement over the weekend for a reported salary of $875,000 per year, according to the Chicago Sun Times. He has great speed and recorded 24 points (12 goals, 12 assists) with the Blackhawks a year ago.
MORE ON RICHARDS DEAL: Larry Brooks of the New York Post has some thoughts on the Brad Richards signing with the Rangers (Brooks likes it) and also believes the NHL anticipated more deals like this (a front-loaded, nine-year contract) even after last year's saga with Ilya Kovalchuk and the New Jersey Devils.
HOWSON TALKS JACKETS: It's been an exciting offseason for the Columbus Blue Jackets as they've added a top goal-scorer, Jeff Carter, to go with Rick Nash, and they made a huge investment in defenseman James Wisniewski. General manager Scott Howson spoke with Aaron Portzline of the Columbus Dispatch about the team's record payroll and what, if any, additional moves could be made.