Will Jannik Hansen be suspended for his hit on Blackhawks’ Marian Hossa?

Jannik Hansen has already avoided discipline on one hit from behind this season, when he cross-checked a referee off the opening draw in San Jose. “I don’t think I even realized what I had done or who I had done it to at the time,” Hansen said after the game. His eyes fixed on Ryane Clowe, Hansen shoved the first body in between him and his target. It was referee Dave Jackson.

But somehow, Hansen escaped that incident without so much as a talking-to from anyone on the on-ice crew.

Will he be second time lucky? That’s the question the hockey world is asking after Hansen perpetrated another hit from behind Tuesday night in Chicago, when he and Blackhawks’ star Marian Hossa came together at centre ice, the puck overhead like hockey mistletoe, only have to have their contact end not with a kiss, but with a nasty forearm shiver that forced Hossa from the game with a suspected concussion.

Here’s the play, from the perspective of the Chicago broadcast team, for whom there’s no question that Hansen is a goblin damned, in the words of Hamlet:

According to these guys, this hit was all malice. He wasn’t going for the puck at all! His real target was Hossa’s juicy, juicy brain stem.

You can see how Blackhawks fans like the ones calling this game might get this idea. First of all, Hossa is a superstar playing incredible hockey — he had two goals before leaving Tuesday’s contest. We learned from the Matt Cooke hit on Erik Karlsson that fans of injured superstars are often so desperate to ascribe blame that they’ll put aside all reason in order to do so.

Plus, Hossa only just recently returned from a serious injury via neutral zone headshot, courtesy Raffi Torres, so there’s a special sensitivity to his plight. It’s tough to see this incident as completely different from that one, too, since they both left Hossa disconcertingly prone on the ice. On the left is Hossa after the Raffi Torres hit. On the right: Hossa, post-Hansen.

“How eerie is it that where Hossa got hit last night is probably within a foot and a half of where he got hit last year in the playoffs?” Ed Olczyk said on the radio Wednesday morning. They’re completely different plays, but the similarities will be hard for some to ignore.

Furthermore, Duncan Keith’s injurious elbow to Daniel Sedin, which also came with the puck overhead, is still fresh in everyone’s mind, and the Canucks never really got revenge for it. It’s easy to make that simple connection and claim that’s what we’re witnessing here.

Finally, this is a Canuck we’re talking about. If there’s anybody who isn’t going to get the benefit of the doubt in the United Center, it’s a Vancouver Canuck. If you’re a Blackhawks’ fan, Jannik Hansen and his ilk are simply bad people prone to ill deeds. They live without morals. They’re basically godless marauders. Ottawa’s Matt Cooke theory applies: this was no accident, because an objectively bad person was present.

Of course, it’s not that cut and dry. Hansen has a hearing with the Department of Player Safety Wednesday afternoon at 12:30, at which time he’ll be able to mount his defence. He has a very good one.

First of all, this really was a play for the puck. Hansen had no intent to injure, let alone intent to make contact. He’s simply trying to make an interception.

Jonathan Toews isn’t just clearing the zone here. He’s making a pass, and operating on the Randy Moss theory: in a one-for-one, Hossa’s going to come down with it. Hossa is bigger than Hansen, and he has body position. He’s going to catch this puck.

But because Hossa’s a very smart player, one of hockey’s smartest, he doesn’t just wait for the puck to come to him where he is. Hansen might still have an outside chance at it there. Instead, Hossa drifts backwards into Hansen’s space as the puck approaches in order to shield Hansen from a play. Plus, by putting Hansen on his back, Hossa has made a lane for himself if he can catch this puck and turn with it up the boards.

But Hansen doesn’t realize Hossa is backing into him. Much like the Dave Jackson crosscheck, Hansen is fixed on his target: the mid-air puck. If he can reach over or past Hossa and make the grab, he might be able to re-enter Chicago’s zone on an odd-man rush with the Sedins. That’s a good scene.

Unfortunately, the resulting collision is a bad scene. Hansen never even comes close to the puck, as either his elbow or forearm connects with the back of Hossa’s head. The red jersey hits the ice immediately. Hossa is helped to the dressing room, and now Hansen has a hearing.

I’m confident this is what happened, and former referee Kerry Fraser appears to have reached the same conclusion:

I do not believe that there was any deliberate or malicious intent on the part of Jannik Hansen to hit Marian Hossa in the head as both players went up for an airborne puck that had been flipped out of the Hawks zone byJonathan Toews. The resulting contact to the back of Hossa’s head was not worthy of anything beyond the minor penalty for roughing that was eventually assessed by the referees; albeit well after play was whistled dead for the Hossa injury.

Both Hansen and Hossa reacted to the approaching puck similar to a jump ball on the Bulls’ homecourt in the United Center. Both players went up for the puck and in doing so, Hossa slid his body position to the right while  Hansen moved to the left. Their focus and intent was gaining puck possession.

The movement of both players put them on a collision course as Hossa had the lead lane and the advantage to contact the puck first. From the back side position, Hansen would have to extend his reach over and past Hossa if he were to be successful in playing the puck. In real time and from a deficient position, Hansen’s follow-through contacted the back of Hossa’s head as both players moved toward one another and reached for the puck.

Fraser goes on to say that Hansen’s subsequent penalty for roughing, which was assessed shortly after the officials realized Hossa didn’t immediately bounce right back up, was the result of “residual sensitivity” to Hossa’s recent situation. I’m inclined agree, but I’d add that the Vancouver-Chicago rivalry played a part.

I think the Department of Player Safety will have similar findings regarding the hit. But they still might dole out some supplemental discipline.

I said last night on Twitter that I think Hansen should be suspended, and while my view of the hit has changed a little upon closer inspection, I still think he will be. Even though this play was a simple accident, I can see how the DOPS might come to the decision to give him either a stiff fine or a game at most.

Hansen’s play was reckless. Hossa backed into his way, but Hansen needs to be more mindful of his surroundings, and in this case, his blindness to everything but his target may have left a guy concussed. You need to have more control than that, especially around your opponent’s head. Those things hold a pretty valuable organ.

And that possible concussion will be a factor. A few people on Twitter asked if we’d even be debating supplemental discipline for Hansen if it wasn’t Hossa, or someone else with a recent concussion history. Probably not. But the “residual sensitivity” could be a factor. Moreover, like it or not, the DOPS considers what they know about the injury sustained on the play when assessing incidents like this, and Hossa could have a serious one. That might be enough to see Hansen miss Thursday’s game in Dallas.

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73 comments

  1. Paul from YT
    February 20, 2013

    If Jannik receives a suspension for his careless attempt at getting to the puck first, and with Keith’s elbow last year on Sedin that was with intent and malice and received only a 5 game break before playoffs, then in comparison Jannik should be only suspended 1 perdiod of play.

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    • nick
      February 20, 2013

      I think Harrison wrote about this a while ago: while its tempting to base present/future suspensions on the Keith debacle, the Keith debacle was a debacle for a reason – the NHL got it wrong (they debacle’d it), and debacle’d debacles shouldn’t be the foundation for future decisions.

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      • Paul from YT
        February 20, 2013

        It also doesn’t help that the NHL’s guide to suspension or disciplinary decisions is based on two factors. The player hit/hurt and the player that caused the infraction.
        Sedin hit = star player, Keith is the guilty = star player = 5 games break.
        Had it been John Scott instead of Keith it would have been 15 games. Had it been Weise instead of Sedin it would have been 1-2 games.

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  2. Puckwatch
    February 20, 2013

    Good article, i agree almost competely. Would encourage you to consider that Hansen’s action was negligent more than reckless.

    Reaching for a puck does not involve a reasonable conclusion of potentially concussing someone. It was an unfortunate fluke that could not have been predicted, unless that was Hansen’s intention all along, which i would agree it wasn’t.

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  3. Not Buying It
    February 20, 2013

    Hansen has one amazing aim to be able to miss the puck by two feet but nail Hossa in the head. Maybe he needs glasses.

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  4. Mt
    February 20, 2013

    Agreed.
    The other factor that may add to him getting a suspension: he injured a star (and isn’t one). Like it or not, the DOPS is pretty sensitive to that (I, personally think they should be, if somewhat less than they are).

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  5. Warpstone
    February 20, 2013

    I’m all for suspending a player for any negligent blow to the head. It makes sense, because you know… that’s where the brain is. Players will adapt.

    However, the problem with this of course is that if Hansen gets any discipline for his recklessness, then how many YEARS would Keith receive for his kill-shot on Daniel?

    That’s the problem. You can’t squeeze up the floor for discipline without extending the ceiling. If the NHL finally has the guts to recalculate what is acceptable, great. But I and anyone else who’s watch the Department of Player Safety lose all credibility will be incredibly skeptical of any meaningful change.

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  6. ManhattanNuck
    February 20, 2013

    I completely disagree with your conclusion that Hansen should be suspended for this play–and I stress the word “play” here, not “hit” like the media outside Vancouver is making this out to be. This wasn’t the case of a player barreling in to make a check on his opponent that went wrong, these were two players both going for the puck at the same time. If this sort of incidental contact, which is inevitable in a competitive contact sport, is worthy of a suspension… then carry that logic to its conclusion and applying that standard you’d have to suspend every forward that fell on a goalie and injured them while driving to the net or fighting in a goal-mouth scramble or any other play situation you can think of where incidental contact leaves someone hurting. Hockey players do not have a right to be protected from accidental injury that comes as the result of clean competition. They’ve assumed that risk by stepping out on the ice.

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    • Not Buying It
      February 20, 2013

      Going for the puck means reaching for it with your arm straight up, not whipping it out at head level of the player in front of you. It was a reckless and moronic play on Hansen’s part.

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      • ManhattanNuck
        February 20, 2013

        Didn’t know there was a textbook move out there for trying to catch a puck over an opponent’s shoulder without touching him as if you’re playing the game “Operation”.

        “Reckless” would have been, instead of reaching for the puck, trying to bat it out of the air baseball-style and accidentally hitting Hossa in the side of the head. At most… AT MOST, he was negligent (when looking at the outcome in hindsight, you need to factor that in to it), but in 99/100 times a player reacts in the same way that Hansen did, you’re not going to be dealing with a player who has an eggshell head (to put it bluntly, no insult to Hossa intended, it’s just the unfortunate reality of his injury history), and no injury results from this play and no penalty is even called. Carry on.

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        • Not Buying It
          February 20, 2013

          Now he was trying to catch the puck? You put your arm up and don’t move it if you’re trying to accomplish that, not swing it forward.

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  7. Skaught
    February 20, 2013

    I think the best word to describe this event is unfortunate. Unfortunate for Hossa, who was clearly dominating the Canucks all over the ice. Despite what the general internet audience of other teams seems to think, Canuck fans generally highly respect opponents who show skill at that level. I know my heart sank when I saw Hossa go down, and part of that reason was I had thoroughly enjoyed watching him play last night. It was unfortunate for Hansen as, in my judgement, the hit was completely accidental and, unfortunately, happened in a way that can easily be misconstrued as intentional. It was unfortunate for the Canucks, who have had to battle a reputation of cheap shotting in the past (supported accurately by some of the weird things players have done, but completely blown out of proportion by the average Canuck-hater). This is going to help patch up that reputation.

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    • Skaught
      February 20, 2013

      Or, rather, this is NOT going to help patch up that reputation. Woops.

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  8. Brent
    February 20, 2013

    I would be very surprised if there is a suspension. A fine maybe. Do we know if it is a in person hearing or an over the phone hearing? Unless it changed in the new collective agreement, this influences the maximum penalty doles out. But I still think it was up to a several game suspension (maybe 5?), even over the phone.

    Although “residual sensitivity” and “profile of injured/accused player” are commonly taken into consideration for these suspensions, I really don’t think they should be. The incident should just be evaluated its own basis. Ya I know, you may say I’m a dreamer…… but I’m not the only one.

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  9. Two Sedins, No Cup
    February 20, 2013

    So the defense you’re offering for Hansen is that he’s just an idiot? Hossa is a smart player and Hansen is just too stupid (you call it reckless) to realize that somebody is backing into him? Sounds to me like he should be wearing a helmet at all times and not just while playing hockey if that’s the case.

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    • Not Buying It
      February 20, 2013

      True story: When Hansen put Bolland out for a couple games earlier this month with a slash he was really just trying to swat an annoying fly.

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    • Rituro
      February 20, 2013

      You’re not disagreeing with the assessment, I note. Does that mean you agree with the sentiment that it was an unfortunate, non-premeditated incident deserving of a game suspension at most?

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  10. Indy Hawks Fan
    February 20, 2013

    I keep hearing about Keith’s suspension for the hit on Sedin. You guys seem to forget the blatant shot to the head Torres delivered on Seabrook a couple years ago. Seabrook missed three playoff games and the punk Torres missed nothing. I’m tired of the crying from Canucks fans. There’s no room in the game for head shots, period. The intent does matter, for sure, But I’m sick of hearing about the Keith hit when Torres got nothing for his non puck playing forearm shiver to Seabrook in the playoffs…nothing.

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    • PeeSeeGee
      February 20, 2013

      I agree with you that the Keith hit isn’t relevant here, but you don’t really support your point by bringing up the Torres hit. There is no room for head shots in the game but intent most definitely does matter – an intentional head shot is far worse than an accidental one.

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    • Chris the Curmudgeon
      February 20, 2013

      That hit was reviewed and determined to be LEGAL. The NHL’s disciplinarian at the time (Colin Campbell, whom you’re certainly not going to tell me was pro-Canucks), reviewed it and determined as much. They are not similar situations, period. Seabrook was skating with his head down and carrying the puck, and Torres could not possibly hit him legally in the chest without first hitting the head. That was Seabrook’s fault. The Keith hit wasn’t even close, it was a predatory and premeditated hit to the head with no attempt to hit the chest or shoulder, and it was an elbow besides. To compare the two shows that you’re not capable of looking at these things objectively.

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  11. akidd
    February 20, 2013

    certainly not worthy of a suspension, say i. hansen, when playing hockey, is very much in control of his actions. when playing volleyball he is just another uncoordinated participant giving it whirl at a beach bbq. hasn’t played the game since junior high, here it comes…whoops, missed.

    such a small sample group, but if we’re picking teams for softball, i’m not picking hansen. he looks like a guy who might half-shotput/half-wrist-flick the ball. not all athletes are well-rounded. hansen should stick with the hockey,

    as for hossa, well it’s too bad. too bad that head injuries don’t just go away. too bad that once the old noggin gets enflamed it’s oh so vulnerable to the next hit, even a slight one. too bad that with all the meetings between the nhl and the nhlpa all they talked about was money and not how to defeat the shadow falling darkly and steadily on almost all pro sports, that of the head injury.

    maybe the nhl will pretend that it’s doing its caretaking duties and slap hansen with a couple of games to show the world how safe it’s keeping them. it wouldn’t surprise me and it certainly would be easier than actually addressing the unpleasant realities of head injuries in pro sports. but it would be absolutely unfair to hansen.

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  12. Rob
    February 20, 2013

    I’ve watched the sequence leading up to the play over and over again and I still cannot figure out what Hansen’s intentions were when trying to play the puck. He is clearly looking to play the puck out of the air, but I do not see where he would want the puck to go. Hossa has position on him directly between him and the puck, if he manages to get a piece of the puck it would have probably dropped near Hossa and either Hossa would gain possession of the puck or Hossa would run enough interference on Hansen to give a Chicago player enough time to get to the puck in support. If Hansen had gotten alot of the puck, he would have sent it back into the Chicago zone, putting the Canucks offside, Hossa still would have ran enough interference on Hansen to allow enough time for a Chicago player to get to the puck first. In either case, Hansen would have been tied up with Hossa taking himself out of the play and giving the Hawks a chance at an odd man rush the other way. In other words, it was not a very smart hockey play, with no logical outcome favouring the Canucks. Was there intent to hit Hossa on the head – only Hansen knows – but jumping into somebody from behind to play a puck, with no positive outcome for your team is reckless, dangerous and frankly not very smart.

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    • chinook
      February 20, 2013

      What balderdash !

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    • best behaviour
      February 20, 2013

      I think he wants it to go into his glove. From there, the plan would be to turn and drop the puck on the ice and play it.

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      • Rob
        February 20, 2013

        Even if he did catch the puck and place it at his feet, Hossa is right on top of him and the all the hawks players are making their way to the bench for a line change. Sure he could try and dump it back in along the boards but there was a Hawks players there. If he had somehow caught the puck he would have had zero options. He shouldnt have even made the attempt for it.

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    • Rob
      February 20, 2013

      What’s Balderdash? The fact even making an attempt at the puck in mid air – given his position and Hossa’s position – was not a smart hockey play and should not have even been attempted. If he makes the smart play and allows the puck to get down on the ice, makes a quick read on the play before he makes a move on Hossa or the puck, the hit to the head doesnt happen. It was a silly decision to even make a jump for the puck and unfortunately Hossa paid for it.

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  13. BakerGeorgeT
    February 20, 2013

    Residual sensitivity is one of the dumbest reasons I have ever heard of t either a) penalize a player or b) suspend a player. Based on that, when Bolland sent Kesler teapot over kettle in the third, he should have been suspended because it was mighty close to the groin area, and that too is a vital muscle for a hockey player.

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  14. Chris the Curmudgeon
    February 20, 2013

    I have to agree with the sentiment about Hossa: it was kind of sad for me to see that it was him going down. While I think this looked like an accident, and was most certainly not premeditated (no matter what the asinine Hawks homer commentators want you to believe), there are guys for whom I won’t feel sorry if something bad happens. I don’t want to see Bolland hit with a cheap shot, for example, but if a slapshot should break his leg, I won’t really feel too bad for him. Conversely, Hossa is an all around clean player whose karma shouldn’t really get him this kind of accident.

    However, I don’t think Hansen should be suspended. The injury is an unfortunate effect of this, but residual discipline needs to be reserved for injurious intent or premeditated hits, or so-called “non-hockey plays” like stomping, regardless of who was on either end of it. This was none of the above.

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  15. Woodstuck
    February 20, 2013

    He was not going for the puck (clearly). And to have a coach who comments like that, he should be on the ice ‘going for the puck’ himself. Some example you set for your team. You cannot stand losing, and when you are your team plays the dirtiest hockey I have seen. Go Hawks. Karma will bite the Canucks again and again and the fans will not have to wonder why they do not get a Cup anymore. It was nasty and unprofessional, and you still lost even though we lost Hossa… So what’s the point? Sedin sisters can’t win without taking out the pro’s on the other team. Jannik was wrong and should be suspended… his hands had no chance of touching that puck – A Liar too, like his coach.

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    • ManhattanNuck
      February 20, 2013

      are they mixing meth with the celery salt on your hot dogs out there??

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    • Brent
      February 20, 2013

      True, I have never seen a coach defend one of their players before. Ever.

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  16. J21 (@Jyrki21)
    February 20, 2013

    Like Skaught, my heart sunk when I saw this, not because it was particularly bad (that play could happen 99 other times with no real consequences), but because I knew the Internet would be ruined for me for the rest of this season. And indeed, there is zero objectivity in the string-’em-up calls coming from all corners, with laughable attempts to make moral equivalence with the Keith flying elbow.

    How Chicago has managed to turn the narrative for years into “The Canucks are the bad guys”, especially in light of what Duncan Keith did last year (oh I’m sorry, an attempt to possibly run a guy out of hockey was “justified” because noted brusier Daniel Sedin had hit Keith too high ewhen finishing a check arlier in the game… kind of like what happens hundreds of times a season) just shows the agenda out there. It makes no sense.

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    • Brent
      February 20, 2013

      We certainly do always seem to lose the public opinion battles. Not sure why, I guess we need better Ministers of Propaganda. Chicago and Boston are stellar at this.

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  17. James
    February 20, 2013

    Full disclosure here that I’m a Hawks fan so I have some bias, but I have to say you take a well thought out approach at dissecting this play. I don’t think Hansen planned on hurting Hossa or hitting him in the head but I do think that when he realized he wasn’t going to be able to reach the puck he made an attempt at hitting Hossa with his arm (which was already up in the air). Reckless play but was definitely an accident and I do think that the DOPS will take Hossa’s star status and recent injury history into account (not saying that they should just that past decisions make me think they will. Having played hockey my entire life I do find it odd that Hansen reached for the puck with his top hand though. Generally your first instinct (and probably better option for Hansen in this situation) is to reach for airborne pucks or bouncers with your bottom hand.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      February 20, 2013

      Yeah, I saw a number of people question why he used his left hand, but the puck was on his left. He used the hand closest to the puck to try to make the play. I think it’s as simple as that.

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      • Not Buying It
        February 20, 2013

        Neither of his hands were close to the puck. To catch a puck in the air you lift you arm vertically. Hansen used his forearm horizontally. Surely wasn’t premeditated but it was beyond dumb and definitely reckless. And the Hansen acted as if the refs had to inform him he even hit Hossa. Please.

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        • Daniel Wagner
          February 20, 2013

          He had to move his arm horizontally, as the puck was to his left. His hand didn’t get close to the puck because Hossa batted it down with his own hand immediately before getting hit.

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          • Not Buying It
            February 20, 2013

            The puck was not to Hansen’s left. If was in front of Hossa who was in front of Hansen. Hansen didn’t bat the puck down because he was nowhere near it, having been blocked by Hossa. No-one bats down a puck with a forearm. I don’t care how dumb Hansen is, he certainly wasn’t taught that.

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            • Daniel Wagner
              February 20, 2013

              Okay. If you honestly believe that’s where the puck was, then there’s not much point in discussing this with you. We’re clearly seeing completely different things.

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        • Flagg
          February 20, 2013

          so no matter where a projectile is coming at you you just stick your hand straight up in the air and hope it hits it? you should really stop posting and reposting this “you have to reach straight up to catch things” theory because it just makes you sound less athletic and more ignorant each time.

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          • Not Buying It
            February 20, 2013

            Anyone who thinks you bat down a puck with forearm shiver is a moron.

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            • Brent
              February 20, 2013

              Why don’t you get someone to throw a ball to you, in front and to your left. Catch it. Watch where you arm goes. Maybe even get someone to film it so you can watch it in slow motion.

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  18. Honest Player
    February 20, 2013

    Fraser, as we know, has a fairly balanced view on things. I agree with him, Hansen doesn’t deserve to be suspended for that innocent play.

    On the other hand, with the way that Hossa went down like he was shot from that little lovetap, I am not sure if he should be playing anymore (repeated concussions are quite dangerous/can mess you up in short/long term). It would be too bad for everyone who likes hockey, Hossa is a great player to watch.

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  19. Canuck Fans Must Be Crazy
    February 20, 2013

    Of course DOPS is going to take account of who was involved regarding star players. Hossa, Malkin and even the Sedins sell tickets. Hansen, John Scott and any other fourth liner does not. So yes, a guy like Keith who is not a repeat offender gets off easier than say a Torres. Regardless, it was a moronic play on Hansen, he deserves a suspension. If you cannot control your body while on the ice, you don’t belong on it. This wasn’t exactly a high speed play with little reaction time(see Torres hit on Seabrook and Keith on Sedin), this was a jump ball where both players had plenty of time to position themselves to reach the puck. Hansen had plenty of time to know what he was doing.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      February 20, 2013

      Hansen doesn’t play on the fourth line. In fact, he’s expected to start the next game on the second line. Comparing him to John Scott is asinine. I had no intention of making those sentences rhyme.

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      • Canuck Fans Must Be Crazy
        February 20, 2013

        You got your head so wrapped up in the Canucks, you fail to see any logic in any post here that even hints that Hansen was wrong. It is pointless to even have a contructive conversation with you. I’m so sorry Hansen was compared to a fourth liner. Let me just make you happy. People should pay triple face to see Hansen. Before last night 95% of hockey fans had no clue who he was. But it was his stellar skills that makes him sellout stadiums across North America… I’ll leave you with this, how was that Stanley Cup parade… Oh wait, you’re still waiting for a bunch of crybaby, cheap players lead by an absolute thug behind the bench and the front office. Your front office gets in fights with fans at an opposing stadium from their suite. Your front office brass got involved with drunk fans paying $100 to watch a game. You stay classy Canucks. Enough said.

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        • Chris the Curmudgeon
          February 20, 2013

          “You stay classy”, I just love that line, it’s just never ever gotten old even after about 100,000 repeats on the internet.

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      • best behaviour
        February 20, 2013

        Ah, but what was your intention for that third sentence rhyming, hmm? I think we can prove intent there.

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      • Zach Morris
        February 21, 2013

        For the crime of rhyming “line” with “line”, you will recieve a minor fine

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  20. PeeSeeGee
    February 20, 2013

    Think Harrison probably has it right here – no clear sign of intent. In fact, Hansen is barely moving when he reaches for the puck, it’s not like he hunted Hossa down. That said, if the NHL is serious about protecting players, it is a hit to the head and probably deserves some level of suspension. Comparing it to the Keith hit is useless, they are totally different.

    That said, the one thing no one seems to be asking is about Hossa. Perhaps I have the situation wrong as I missed it live, but Hansen doesn’t seem to hit him that hard. Now to be fair, it was likely the pad that made contact (which is hard) but still. If Hossa is out for a while you have to question whether he should have been playing in the first place. NHL really needs a better protocol for getting guys back in.

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    • Not Buying It
      February 20, 2013

      Reaches for the puck? He was expecting to reach through Hossa’s body and with a horizontal forearm? He should be suspended a month for pure stupidity if that’s the case.

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  21. PeeSeeGee
    February 20, 2013

    Of course, right after I post someone say it immediately before me.

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  22. betty
    February 20, 2013

    So… you jumped to the conclusion that Hansen deliberately injured Hossa, last nite, now that you REALLY looked at it, you conclude that it was unintentional, a mistake ? Now you STILL want Hansen suspended, FOR AN ACCIDENTAL HIT ?? I don’t get your reasoning. WHY? Now all “Accidental injuries” are going to be subject to discipline or suspension ? The next thing Players will have to do is skate one mile per hour, wear white gloves, and will be required to inform the player they are opposing that they are sorry , don’t mean it, ask the opposing player if they object to contact. have witnesses, a lawyer, and ask for forgiveness with a Dozen Roses,BEFORE they make a PLAY. This is getting ridiculous.

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  23. Lois
    February 20, 2013

    First of all, we all know Keith’s hit last year was the exact same hit perpetrated on him earlier in the game by a Canuck. Let’s be real. He took advantage of a situation and hurt someone. He served his time.
    That said, it was nothing like the Hansen play.
    The Canucks play dirty hockey because they don’t have the talent to play fair. They push, they bully, they bend the rules, and that’s fine when they aren’t intentionally injuring people. It’s accepted that a team without skill is going to be scrappy to throw actual athletes off their game.

    A real hockey player, a true athlete, would know where that puck was and would have gone after that puck. They wouldn’t have gone after Hossa’s head.
    So your argument is either that you have a decent hockey player who was gunning to take out the guy who already scored two goals on your team, OR you have a terrible player with no concept of where a puck is or how to get to it.

    Unfortunately, this goon took out a tremendous athlete — be it by malice or incompetence. If he can’t play hockey, get him out of the NHL. If he’s an enforcer, teach him to be a man, hit properly and put up a real fight.

    It’s disgusting. I understand your bias, and I understand my own.

    But I know who’s better in the end. And I think you do, too.

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    • Daniel Wagner
      February 20, 2013

      *sigh*

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    • Brent
      February 20, 2013

      You actually think that the incidental contact to the hear by Daniel on Keith (a hit that NO ONE other that Keith even noted when it happened) was the same as Keith leading with his elbow into Daniels head with the puck not even close! Really!?! I mean REALLY!?! You need to wake up, take off the blackhawk tinted glasses and smell the coffee.

      But I totally agree that the Canucks have no talent, they have only done as well as they have by guile and deceit.

      *sigh* indeed

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    • Timmy Wong
      February 20, 2013

      A couple of Harts and Art Rosses mixed in with a Jennings trophy all disagree, unless…y’know, the Sedins were playing goon hockey. Of course, that can’t happen, because as we know from Chicago media, the Sedins are actually sisters and they dive and turtle whenever there’s a gust of wind.

      Make up your mind, guys…is it going to be soft and cowardly, or reckless and goonery? The fact that so many Hawks fans think this team possess both is stupefying, for the reason that the two cannot exist in one entity.

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    • Rose
      February 20, 2013

      Wait you’re saying Hansen is a goon?! What a joke. Hansen has been in my opinion the most consistent player on the Canucks this year. I’m pretty sure he can play hockey and shouldn’t have to leave the NHL for an accidental play.

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    • Cathylu
      February 20, 2013

      Hansen = goon???? Really?!?!?!

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      • Knight of Cydonia
        February 20, 2013

        well sometimes he “can’t be calmed down”…

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    • alison
      February 20, 2013

      Crazy town. That’s all…

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  24. Timmy Wong
    February 20, 2013

    All this proves one thing – Chicago’s got some good spin doctors if they want to call that a “hit.” That’s like saying Bobby Clarke “tapped” Kharlamov’s ankle.

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  25. Rituro
    February 20, 2013

    UPDATE: One game suspension. Seems about right.

    Look at it this way: pretend it’s not Vancouver and Chicago, or Hansen and Hossa, or whatever. Pretend it’s just Player X with a key point that he’s been concussed before. In this play, he’s hit again in a sensitive area, with intent or not (it’s irrelevant either way), and goes down.

    If the NHL(PA) are serious about creating a reality of zero-tolerance to headshots, of course you suspend for a game. That’s the whole “zero-tolerance” thing. Head was hit? Game. Done. Move on. Great guy? Accident? Don’t care. Head was hit, one game, move on. Remove the emotion from it: head hit, one game, done.

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    • Suspensions are inconsistent
      February 20, 2013

      I would agree with your idea on how it should be. The problem is that a lot of the rulings by Shanahan are not consistent (rather, it would seem his decisions carry player/team bias)… if it was Hossa concussing Hansen in the same way, I don’t think we see a suspension, for example.

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    • best behaviour
      February 20, 2013

      The other side of the reality, speaking as someone who doesn’t agree with the suspension:
      if Hansen saw that Hossa moved into his space and backed away from the puck out of consideration for Hossa’s head, how many words of praise and congratulation would he be drawing? From either side?

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      • Doop
        February 20, 2013

        What?

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    • Brent
      February 20, 2013

      Thats fine, but where is the consistency?

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  26. Mark
    February 20, 2013

    Two points:

    1) Hansen’s head never looks in the puck’s direction (look at the replay guys – don’t take my word for it). It was locked on Hossa, even as the puck bounced down and past both players. If Hansen was focused on the puck and oblivious to Hossa’s whereabouts, his head would have been turning where the puck goes.

    2) His hand does not extend at any point in the play — just the elbow. You can’t catch a puck with your elbow… Well, I guess you can, but it wouldn’t be efficient or advised…

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    • Doop
      February 20, 2013

      Seriously. I’m an avid Canucks fan and I’ll damage control with the best of them, but if you don’t believe that this was AT THE VERY LEAST worth a suspension then you haven’t watched the clip enough. Check out the NHL’s suspension video and tell me that they made a mistake. It was a dumb play by Hansen and you’ve gotta deal with the consequences of acting like a tool sometimes.

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  27. Two Sedins, No Cup
    February 20, 2013

    It’s hard to argue with video evidence. Not that some of you won’t try.
    http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=60&id=203576&lang=en

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  28. Chris the Curmudgeon
    February 20, 2013

    I see that the troll filter has been disabled today.

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    • Brent
      February 20, 2013

      Makes things interesting, in a weird sort of way.

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    • Tengeresz
      February 20, 2013

      You got a laugh from me oh Curmudgeony one

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