Here’s the setup: With a little over ten minutes to go in the first period of game 6 between the Washington Capitals and the New York Rangers Donald Brashear lays a brain-scrambling hit on the Rangers’ Blair Betts. Betts would get tended to on the ice, and after sorting out just what arena he was in would groggily make his way to the locker room. He did not return to the game. Have a look:
So is this a punishable offense? Should Brashear be forced to sit a game or two while surrendering a few thousand greenbacks, or is this simply a case of one player getting a little too zealous while making the most of his minuscule amount of playing time?
Personally, I’m of the opinion that the Washington Capitals should be without Brashear’s services for the next game at the very least. Intentional or not – elbow or not – he clearly made contact with Betts’ head, and if I’ve said it once I’ve said it a million times: If the league is serious about cracking down on cracking skulls then there should be no room for interpretation.
Oh, and stay tuned at the end of the clip for some pre-game Brashear shenanigans. A precursor to the eventual hit on Betts? You be the judge.
According to TSN Donald Brashear is scheduled to go before the league today at 1:00 to answer for his orbital bone-breaking hit on Blair Betts as well as his pre-game goofiness with the Rangers’ Colton Orr. Apparently Betts is done for the playoffs.
According to NHL.com Donald Brashear was suspended a total of six games for the above hit on Blair Betts as well as his pre-game smack-talk with Colton Orr.
Brashear received a one-game suspension for the incident with Orr and five games for, as NHL.com put it, “a blind-side hit on New York forward Blair Betts at 9:54 of the first period.”
Said Colin Campbell, Senior Executive Vice President of Hockey Operations for the NHL:
“Brashear delivered a shoulder hit to an unsuspecting player. It is also my opinion that the hit was delivered late and targeted the head of his opponent, causing significant injury.”
Brashear’s suspension will begin tomorrow night when Washington takes on the Rangers in game 7 of their series and will continue through the next five playoff games if they continue. If Washington somehow doesn’t go on to round two then Brashear’s suspension will resume at the beginning of the 2009-2010 regular season.
And so it goes.