Michael Hoffman's take on local sports in the Maryland, Virginia and DC area.

The Backstrom suspension was correct and people need to stop making excuses

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You're well within you rights to be mad about the uncalled transgressions against the Washington Capitals this series.

Chimera Tim Thomas.jpg

 Nothing to see here, just Tim Thomas kicking Jason Chimera with his skate! (Photo credit: Russian Machine Never Breaks )

You're well within your rights to question the judgment of NHL head disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan, in handing out NHL playoff suspensions.

In one case, a player was suspended only for one game for punching a guy while the victim was down and defenseless. In another, the NHL levied no suspension against Shea Weber, who put Henrik Zetterberg's into a headlock and slammed his face into the boards.


If you're upset about that, you're probably correct.


However if you think the one-game suspension on Nicklas Backstrom is unfair, you're kidding yourself. (Watch the replay and pause it at 18 seconds.) It's clear as day that Backstrom is going high with his stick. I'm not even sure how you can question it.


Of course there are people who believe the moon landing was faked so I guess you can question almost anything. Hey, again that's your right!

Moon landing.jpg

 Filmed in front of a live studio audience

Just don't tell me that the best way to deal with deplorable punishment decisions, and a high level of targeting, is to apply the questionable standards used in those decisions to everything else. The NHL messed up badly in allowing Shea Weber to go unpunished for slamming someone's head into the wall, so the only solution is to allow everyone to be able to slam someone's head on the wall?


That's the definition of insanity! If discipline has been a problem in the past, the way to deal with it is by not disciplining when it is needed in the here-and-now?


What kind of backwards-ass thinking is that?


A lot of people are saying, (Hi, Alan May) 'he did it first, he did it worse, and you didn't even notice it!'


You sound like a bunch of petulant little six-year-olds, complaining to mommy.


That argument didn't work then, it definitely doesn't work now.


The interesting thing here is that the guy who actually committed the act isn't having any of this.


Unlike the Capitals water-holders, cough, umm.., I mean objective bloggers, who on Twitter have told us everything from holding your stick to your face implies a malicious intent to attack, to that the attack was actually Peverley's fault, Backstrom today had none of it.


"I think it was stupid on my part. I've got to deal with it now."


Being accountable for your own action and not making excuses? What a novel concept!


Here is a statement on the suspension from the Washington Capitals


"We disagree with the NHL's decision to suspend Nicklas Backstrom," the statement said. "This has been a competitive and physical series, and we do not understand why a suspension was imposed in this case while other incidents in this series have not been reviewed. Our singular focus now is on Game 4, and we look forward to the energy that our great fans provide."

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