About last night …

Have to keep the powder dry for the Puckcast we’re recording later this morning, but here are a few thoughts:

The NHL is not the WWE.

Players do not attempt to bang other players’ heads off turnbuckles. If Zdeno Chara is called to a disciplinary hearing, you have to think intent will figure into the deliberations.

When I got home from the Bell Centre last night, I watched the hit on YouTube. And while Pierre Houde immediately labelled it as “absolument vicieux”, I agree with Arpon Basu: it’s impossible to establish what Chara’s intent was.

Bob McKenzie has a similar take, although Canadiens fans who saw Max Pacioretty unconscious on the ice may find the TSN maven’s analysis a bit cold.

In his commentary during the clip, Benoit Brunet stresses that Chara is not a dirty hockey player. And in remarks after the game, Mike Cammalleri talked about the necessity of knowing, at all times, exactly where you are on the ice.

No, I’m not blaming the victim. Having dumped the puck up the boards, Max Pacioretty was allowed to pursue it without being run off by the league’s strongest player.

And the pair have a history.

Remember when Pacioretty shoved Chara after that game-winning overtime goal? The way Lurch has behaved since, one could surmise OT shoves are little different from questioning the morals of a Slovakian’s mother. 

So I wouldn’t want to be Mike Murphy, who probably will adjudicate this because Colin Campbell’s son plays for the Bruins.

Ron Reusch, who has watched many more hockey games than I, said the ice surface has to be made bigger. Players are just too fast, too strong.

One pressbox wag suggested getting rid of that unglassed area between the benches “and if it means Joël Bouchard has nowhere to work, that’s an added benefit.”

 

There was a lot to like about the rest of the game.

The Canadiens played their game: five red jerseys in the vicinity of the puck in all three zones.  Carey Price was customarily superb, as were his shot-blocking teammates.

Lars Eller gets better in every game. Funny, you don’t hear much anymore about how Jacques Martin has ruined Eller and P.K. Subban.

Playing Paul Mara and Ryan White helped cool the more savage instincts of the Bruins, especially after White laid a pretty good thumping on Johnny Boychuk early in the action.

Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton tried to start stuff in the dying seconds of a 4-1 game, which is typical Claude Julien BS. But the Pacioretty injury had a sobering effect on the proceedings and ensured that the third period did not become a total goon show.

The Bell Centre became a tomb after the Pacioretty injury, and that influenced the game. Having basically won it in 40 minutes, the Canadiens sleepwalked through the early part of the third period, but Boston couldn’t take advantage of it.

I thought the Bruins would play better. On paper, they’re a powerhouse. And they played that way through their recent 6-0 road trip.

But the Canadiens have their number. The guys in red jerseys were too fast for the lumbering visitors, and it is ever thus.

On Saturday, we saw that it might not be a bad deal for the Canadiens to meet Tampa Bay in the playoffs.

And on the evidence of last night’s game, you can add Boston to the list of desirable match-ups.

Tune the Puckcast later today for more. 

 

125 Comments

  1. Canadiangrrl says:

    “McGuire, shut up too…that was preemptive because I know you’re about to piss me off.” — It feels good to laugh, even in the midst of being upset and angry. :)

    Hab Baby #1 due 5/19/11…

  2. habsruleworld says:

    http://www.boston.com/sports/columnists/massarotti/2011/03/chara_hit_difficult_to_defend.html

     

    according to the Boston Herald, Tony Masorotti, he believes Chara knew exactly what he was doing as he drove mac pac’s head into the turnbuckle, and gives evidence that A Boston player has just previously done the same thing to another player a few games ago.

     

    Mckenzie, Boone, Basu etc. I could not disagree more with you,

     

    Chara knew exactly what he was doing as he first sized up the distance to the turnbuckle before delivering the shove into it.

  3. redgorf says:

    Intent, of course there intent, any body that played the game know it exist, you get hit check the number and say to yourself  ill get him, take alook where his glove is its last thing he does, i;m sure he even heard the players on the bench groan. For making the rink bigger is nonsense, players will try and get around one another and the boards are a D’s helper. If the leage is serious its like every thing else, an example must take place of responsibility of action, just like it does in the real world ” drunk driving  speeding use of eccisive force “…ect. THE REST OF THE SEASON OFF WITH LOSS OF PAY THIS WOULD START TO HURT AND CHEAP HITS WOULD STOP.

  4. Displaced says:

    Not sure if someone already posted this, but at least one Boston sportswriter agreed that Chara deserves a suspension.

    http://www.boston.com/sports/columnists/massarotti/2011/03/chara_hit_difficult_to_defend.html

    Whose leg do I have to hump to get a dry martini around here?

  5. smiler2729 says:

    Chara’s not a dirty player… until now. You’re right that he deliberately ran Pacioretty into the stanchion, his elbow raised and drove him into it and bullshit that he claims he didn’t really know where he was near the benches.

    As for McSorley and Brashear, I’ve maintained for years and go back and look if you want, that McSorley’s stick merely tapped Brashear’s helmet and big Donald, in his clumsy attempt to embellish it, went down on his own, the fashionably loosely fastened helmet coming off and banging his head on the ice. Yeah, he concussed himself.

    Same with Bertuzzi/Moore – yeah, big Bert’s a complete thug for jumping Moore (no angel himself) from behind but the physical damage done to Moore’s neck was by the idiots who piled on the two of them, not from Bertuzzi’s tackle.

    Point being, hockey is a dangerous game, mostly because at high speed, the emotion of a moment can result in ugly, terrible scenarios.

  6. Somethingwithhabsinit says:

    I definitely agree with your feeling there, but this isn’t the first tragedy like that this year. David Perron hasn’t played since early November, Joe Thornton got 2 games for it. The best player in the world hasn’t played in 2 months, not a suspension to be found anywhere near it.

    Max is a tough kid, and I hope he can fully recover in time for next season, but I also would like the Habs to shut him down for the rest of this one. It’s not worth risking your whole future at age 21.

  7. Graves says:

    I sort of agree, I think. Do I think Chara meant to nearly kill Pacioretty? No. Do I think he deliberately ran his head into the stanchion? Yes. Not a doubt in my mind. I doubt McSorley meant for Brashear’s helmet to pop off before his head smacked the ice either. But it happened, and he was held responsible for it, in the same way that Chara should be held responsible for it.

    I also agree with you that he won’t get anything more than two games. Which makes me sick to my stomach, seeing as how Pacioretty’s career is in jeopardy, but hey, welcome to the NHL…

  8. Somethingwithhabsinit says:

    Can I take both sides? I’ve never found Chara to be a dirty player, and actually admired that he doesn’t use his size to destroy people, which he easliy could. That being said, it’s very clear that he deliberately ran Max into the stanchion. Saying that it’s unfortunate the hit happened in that part of the ice is like saying it’s unfortunate that McSorley was holding a stick when he waved his hands behind Brashear’s head.

    This was not Chara’s first time playing hockey, he knew where he was on the ice, and he made every effort to make sure Max’s head ran into the stanchion. Yes, this is a play that has happened many times before, and this is one of the many times that it happened deliberately.

    Again, I don’t think this was a cold, calculated move. I would compare it to Cammalleri trying to carve up that kid’s face in the pre-season. A split-second bad decision where you want to hurt the guy, and aren’t really considering all of the consequences.

    I don’t think he’ll get anywhere near 10 games. Gillies got 10 because it was an incident that happened in his first game back after a 9-gamer. Being that Chara has a mostly clean record, and is a team captain and high-profile player, I’d be surprised to see him get more than 2.

  9. Graves says:

    After seeing the hit, my girlfriend hugged me and said she was so glad I didn’t play competitively (God bless her for thinking I actually ever had the talent to do so). And you don’t have to wonder about the number of parents who decided to keep their kids from playing hockey last night: the radio call-in lines were clogged this morning with masses of parents saying exactly that.

  10. Graves says:

    To me, the worst thing about this garbage isn’t the fact that Chara will get away with a slap on the wrist (if Chris Pronger as a repeat offender only gets eight games for curb-stomping someone, Chara will get two games at the most), it’s the fact that these plays are ruining hockey for me.

    Last night, I honestly thought Pacioretty was lying dead on the ice. That’s not hyperbole, that’s the truth. Yet another good young player whose career might now be in jeopardy because of some thug idiot and a league that doesn’t take discipline seriously. This isn’t just disheartening to me as a Canadiens fan, it’s disheartening to me as a fan of the game. I don’t want to watch games full of Cookes and Prongers and Charas because they’ve been allowed to take out the Crosbys with dirty plays. It’s just not hockey anymore.

    Last night, I was watching the Canadiens handing the Bruins their asses by playing one of the best hockey games I’ve seen in a long time. Then I watched as the Bruins tried to derail everything by playing a game of cheapshots and thuggery. I’m not even angry anymore. I’m just depressed thinking about what this means for the future of the game I love.

    I wish all the best to Pacioretty and his family.

  11. smiler2729 says:

    The Day When Being A Hockey Fan Ceased Being Fun…

    There’s so much wrong with Gary’s NHL and a lot of it just simmers underneath but the lack of respect the players have for each other and the even deeper lack of respect the league disciplinarians have for them is a major, major problem.

    Colin Campbell, never mind that his justice is skewed by favoritism and cronyism, the mere fact that his rivethead of a son is employed by a NHL team as a ‘player’ should eliminate daddy from having the position as NHL judge and jury.

    The most obvious aspect of what ails today’s NHL game is the rink size or lack thereof and the Gary bandwagon of ill-advised owners cite COST, yes COST! as a deterrent toward widening their ice surfaces. Oh no, they’d have to, essentially, lose the last row of each arena and the accompanying profit, not to mention the cost of moving the player benches and penalty boxes back a couple of feet!

    I hate the NHL, from the ridiculous standing seedings to the gimmicky shooutout to the bad southern markets (and ignoring the Canadian cities clamouring for them), I hate, hate, hate it. From Gary’s bobbleheaded speech delivery to the Leafccentricity of the media, this is not the league or game I grew up with.

    From my driveway in T.M.R. in the ’70s to the frozen lake we had in St.Sauveur, I played hockey everywhere, whether it was actual nets, snowpiles or two boots as posts, the game was always the same in our heads, we shot, we scored, we saved, we celebrated… but I’ll tell you what we didn’t do – fight or drive each other into parked cars or garage doors by our heads. No, we played the game. The pros don’t do that anymore.

    Max Pacioretty will recover, thank God, but will he ever be the same hockey player? Richard Zednik, post-McLaren and Jason Arnott, post-slapshot to the forehead, just to name a couple, were NEVER the same player. Marc Savard sure isn’t and I’m worried Sid Crosby won’t be.

    Oh yeah, the game, turning points, Ryan White standing up to Boston’s bull, Jeff Halpern’s wraparound block and Lars Eller’s beauty goal. Those were last night’s three stars… but I just really only want Max-Pac to get better and Zdeno Chara to go to hell.

    ’nuff said.

     

  12. Chuck says:

    Chara had his shoulder in position to rub Max out along the boards, but then raises his arm, brings it up from behind, and directs him into the post. For anyone to say that he simply meant to dump him into the Bruins’ bench is absolutely ridiculous; Chara’s motion in no way looked like he was trying to dump him into the box.

     

  13. Mike Boone says:

    No prob, bro. This is a tough one.

  14. smiler2729 says:

    Some call it crazy but I switched to goalie when I was 24 because it’s safer (I got crosschecked once when I was 16 in a house league game and couldn’t walk for a couple of minutes).

    Sure, the pucks can hurt but at least I’m not being hunted out there. There are morons trying to be hockey heroes even in beer league hockey.

  15. smiler2729 says:

    No kidding!

    And LOL at your McGuire comment, perfect!

  16. JF says:

    Good post.  I agree completely.

  17. JF says:

    The hit on Max-Pac certainly took the lustre off what was an almost perfet game by the Habs.  The Bruins simply had no answer to our speed.  We beat them all over the ice.  I was disgusted, as I regularly am when we play them, to see how they tried gooning it up in the last couple of minutes.  The Flyers have a reputation for thuggery, but in my opinion they have nothing on the Bruins.  They’re a dirty bunch of thugs who are often incited by their coach.

    As for the hit, I hope Chara gets a suspension, but I fear it won’t happen or won’t be more than a couple of games.  All the discussion about intent, coupled with the fact the hit would have had no consequences anywhere else on the ice suggest the NHL will find a way to minimize it.  They’ll call it an unfortunate accident, and Chara will get off with a couple of games or even just a fine.  But it was a dangerous play, and players are responsible for their actions and for knowing where they are on the ice.  If a player’s stick cuts another player’s face as he is falling to the ice, he gets four minutes even though it was completely accidental and the other player doesn’t miss a shift.  Chara can say it was an accident and he had no intention of injuring Pacioretty, but he hit him hard in a dangerous area of the ice.  He should be held responsible.  It’s up to the NHL to take dangerous plays out of the game, but I can all too easily imagine them reacting to a player’s death by saying it was an unfortunate accident.  Jacques Martin is usualy almost too circumspect in his remarks, but I was glad to hear him speak out after the game and call for the NHL to take action.

    I hope the Habs find a way to re-sign James Wisniewski.  His arrival completely revitalized the powerplay, which is now a major weapon for us.  Since Mark Streit left, we have struggled every year to find a replacement with that big point shot, and, until we do, the powerplay sputters along at less than 15%.  I realize we have an over-abundance of defencemen and Pierre Gauthier will have some tough decisions to make, but I think we need to keep that big point shot.  And speaking of defencemen, I liked Mara’s game last night.

  18. G-Man says:

    This is not about “intent.” We are not mind readers. This is about the action itself and the resulting injury. I really don’t give a shit what Basu or McKenzie think about “intent.” Pac could have been killed and Chara thinks Pac deliberately leapt at the stancheon with his head.

    At least 10 games suspension for the uncaring idiot or the NHL does not give a rat’s ass about its players or the integrity of the game.

  19. stephen says:

    Re: Mara

    Jacques now has a very versatile set of defenceman from which to pick and choose, depending on their opponents. People have knocked Mara in the past, but he is perfectly serviceable when used in ‘spot duty’ as he has for the Habs recently. In for a game against a more physical opponent, out for a game against a speedier team. I’m happy we have him for the former.

  20. MusicMutt says:

    To think he didn’t intend this you have to beleive that he knew not where he was on the ice.  Anyone think Chara doesn’t have good ice pressence?  He knew exactly where they were and the little extra shove at the end ensured Max hit the target at which Chara was aiming….

    Praying for a fast recovery…

  21. Shiloh says:

    Exactly. There are many civil and criminal wrongs which do not require a finding of intent – careless and reckless driving, manslaughter, criminal negligence.

    This is a defining moment for the league. If they don’t attempt to put a significant deterrence in place, I believe that a future player injured during a negligent play could name the league as partially responsible in any legal action.  

  22. CanadienFanTrappedinNiagaraFallsNY says:

    Agree with ya G-Man. This talk of unclear intent from the media types is getting ridiculous. I guess it allows one to fill an article with the fluff of words without really saying anything at all. The intent that we do know of is a late, illegal hit in a hazardous part of the rink. It then resulted in a terrible, potentially deadly injury. It’s quite simple and no different than any other suspendable action in the game. How do we know when ANYONE has an intent to injure unless their wielding a stick like a battle axe?

  23. JohnBellyful says:

    Having been gang-ripped last night for expressing the opinion that I didn’t think Chara’s intent was to injure while in no way excusing his actions, it’s somewhat comforting to see I and a few other posters, along with some commentators, respected and otherwise, were not alone in reaching an unpopular conclusion. It’s far from vindication – debate over what happen will continue for weeks – but it feels better than vilification. 

    I’m still not willing to concede Chara set out to render bodily harm – wanting to inflict pain, yes; carrying out a vendetta, perhaps – but what happened at the end, Pacioretty hitting his head against the turnbuckle, took place at a split-second. I can’t say for certain that was Chara’s intent all along.

    What I found instructive from the whole experience is how much emotions are stirred up by such incidents. No, you can’t remain impassive in view of what happened, nor what I would expect anyone to remain silent, but the anger directed at those putting forward a contrary view was disturbing. Somehow we had become apologists, fifth columnists, or worse.

    Emotions were still inflamed well after the hit and verbal assaults in all directions were being committed. People had time to consider what they saying and more than a few chose to do it in as forceful a manner as possible. I know, boo hoo, my feelings were hurt, so grow up, you big baby. But that’s not my point. This is: 

    In view of the fans’ instinctive, split-minutes reaction, I can only imagine what it must be like to be a professional athlete playing a sport at high speed, when snap judgments are made in the heat of the moment. Was Chara thinking as he approached Pacioretty: I hate this player, he’s got a step on me, but I got the angle, I can rub him out, make him hurt, hey, there’s the turnbuckle, I’ll ram his head against it?

    Chara warrants a suspension for the consequence of his action; how well the league can determine his motive will decide how long he serves. I’m not optimistic it will be more than token punishment. Hedman’s hit on Crosby was every bit as bad and he had time to consider what he was doing, ram Crosby’s head against the glass well after the player had made the pass, but he did it anyway. Did he even get a penalty on the play?
    It’s all about respect – on and off the ice. It’s being lost all over the place.

    I imagine the debate will be well-advanced when I return home from work tonight.

  24. geo_habsgo says:

    Boone, if that is your stance on the matter then you should be ashamed. In the media’s attempts to be “rational” about the incident they are forgetting one important thing. Humans play the game. You can’t find out whether there was real intent on the part of Chara, hell you can’t even do that in a murder case. You need to look at the evidence and the precedent that has been set in the past. Was there a history between the two? Yes, a very nasty one. Was the hit clean? Yes, it arguably was. Was it an illegal hit regardless of where it was? Of course Was it in a completely dirty area of the ice? You bet.

    We can’t say that if it was somewhere else on the ice it would not have mattered because it did not happen somewhere else on the ice. Players who get suspended for blindside hits to the head are rarely cited for having an intent to injure but the fact that they do injure someone warrants their suspension. Why should this situation be any different? Because the player causing the infraction has an otherwise clean record? Spare me. 

    It was dirty and malicious because Pac had already dumped the puck and Chara had time to see that. It was dirty because there was 15 seconds remaining in a 4-0 second period. It was dirty because Chara, an experienced veteran is lying if he says he is unaware of where the turnbuckle is on an ice rink. If one of the Canadiens did this to a Bruin I would condemn them as well because it goes beyond allegiance to a hockey team. This is a persons life and no matter what anyone says, the truth of the matter is that while it might not have been Chara’s intent to put a young man’s life in danger, it was his intent to bang him up sufficiently that in an illegal move that would have been penalized in any area of the ice. For this reason, he needs to be a man and accept the consequences of his actions and acknowledge that me made a mistake that could have potentially been fatal for a young man just beginning to find success in his field of work.

  25. SlovakHab says:

    Never liked Chara, but now he crossed the line.

    The most important thing – Max Pac needs to get well!!! We need him and we like him. Good player, likeable guy.. Get well!

  26. geo_habsgo says:

    ahh and sorry if this came across as a knock on Boone since that was not my intention. I really do respect his journalism and what he does for this site. Didn’t realize I came on as strong as I did in the beginning. 

  27. notbigbird says:

    To me there are two points to consider.

    (1) The NHL condones late hits all of the time. The play has been made, but the hit is still allowed. I am not talking about a bang-bang play where the hit occurs immediately after pass but about hits after a fair delay when the hit was clearly made subsequent to the play. This kind of hitting is unnecessary and needs to be stopped, but it’s seen as fair game right now, so the league isn’t going to do much about this incident.

    (2) I don’t believe for a second that Chara lined up Patchy’s head to hit the stanchion, but I do think that he intended to hurt him. I don’t mean hurt as intent to injure like this but hurt enough perhaps cause him to sit out a few shifts. This is something that the players have to stop as body-checking now seems more about punishing than about taking the player out of the play. I know there’s a fine line, but the players association should get involved immaking their members more aware. However, one could as easily argue “no intent” so the league isn’t going to do much about this incident.

    My prediction is that the league will not penalize Chara any further or that it will be minimal. I think he should be punished, but I don’t think he will be.

    The direction of the league has to be addressed as this is getting out of hand. Probably some sort of combination between regulating equipment, tightening the rules, and educating players is what is needed.

    I woke up this morning withe the hit running through my head. It was awful. I hope Patchy recovers, but I am not holding my breath until he plays again because he may not — ever.

     

     

     

  28. Chris says:

    I’ve watched the video dozens of times.  I simply don’t see the intent and malice that everybody else is seeing.

    It is one of those plays that happens a few times per year.  Players separate shoulders, they receive nasty lacerations to their face, they break hands, etc.  It happens.  Komisarek did it to himself a few years ago…he missed a check and smoked that part of the glass and hurt himself.

    NHL players go for the “big” hit all the time.  Chara is particularly known for trying to dump guys into the bench…I’ve never understood the thrill people get from it, but fans and players alike get a particularly huge rise out of an opponent getting benched.

    Like I said, I won’t lose sleep if Chara gets suspended or if he does not get suspended.  I can see both sides of it.  I hope that Pacioretty recovers fully from what is undoubtedly going to be a long rehabilitation for him.  That’s the only side of this thing on which I think we all agree.

  29. JasonM says:

    It’s unfortunate.

    Those words were repeated multiple times over the course of a very short interview given after a game that provided little to no answers to a great crime committed on the ice. It’s hard to find retain sympathy for the Boston Bruins, a team with a past of key players taken out on stretchers themselves. Many of us still remember vividly Cooke’s hit on Savard and Randy Jones on Patrice Bergeron. Wouldn’t they know better by now?

    My first real question is, “Does the league make a statement out of this or won’t they?” We can rant all day if it was intentional or not, give piss-poor excuses that “If that glass extension wasn’t there, it was a legal hit” but let’s put emotions aside and look at the play as it unfolded, who the players involved were and the results. No “ifs”. No “maybes”.

    MaxPac was carried out in a stretcher. He didn’t have possession of the puck. There was a last second shove from Chara from behind into the separator. And most importantly, there was the reaction of the player. Someone who’d been shocked would have stopped skating down the ice like he did. I don’t know about you but if I see someone go down like that, it does something to me like it did and half a dozen friends who were watching a great game at Hurley’s last night. I truly believe it was fear an emotion that I was not prepared for. Looking at the people in the stands, I felt this was an emotion well shared.

    My optimistic side is that they’ll make a statement out of this, throwing them a large suspension. However, my realistic side will say 3 to 4 games, tops. The NHL is neither fair nor logical and poor management has always been their problem in this regards.

    My second and last real question is, “Why?” For a little push after a game? Did it have to come down to this? Where a player might have to learn to walk again? A veteran player should know better. I don’t know if you have tape of that on the Bruins side but you can clearly listen to his ominous prediction.

    It may never be known what his true intent was but that does not remove what really happened. Loyal Bruins fans will feel the injury was the unfortunate result of random circumstance and Canadiens fans will feel Chara was out for the ultimate revenge. Personally? Poorly executed intent one with possible dire consequences on a promising young player.

    Last but not least, kudos to the Habs for playing an exceptional game on both ends of the ice and for Lars Eller to prove that for one night, one of my favorite media guys like Mr. Marinaro can be wrong, at least for one night. 

     

  30. Norcal Habsfan says:

    Everybody is talking intent. Boone and other writers are saying it’s impossible to establish intent but I disagree. I hate to borrow wisdom from Don Cherry but i think he was ultimately right on the Steckel hit on Crosby. He maintained that when Steckel hit Crosby from a blind side Steckel didn’t look back to see what large mass impacted his shoulder. If it wsa truly unexpected for Steckel he would have turned. Steckel knew it was coming and didn’t react when it did and I agree that does show intent. 

     Watch the Chara hit again. He did’t turn when he heard and felt the thud of Max Pac’s head on the stanchion. There was no significant play in front of him to watch but he doesn’t turn his head to see what happened. He wasn’t suprised at all because he meant to do it. He expected the thud. I ultimately believe in the good in people, and I don’t think that he meant to put him in the hospital or render him unconscious for  7 minutes. I think he truly feels remorse but he KNEW that stachion was coming. He wanted to hurt him.

    This deserves a rest of the season suspension. The intent was there and the precedent has been set where intent was clear.

    On another note, do we ask too much of players to know that fine line of sporting agression and violence? I was jumping on the couch cheering White pound Boychuck into submission as I’m sure all my HIO brothers were doing as long as no one really gets hurt. I was cheering when Pacqiao almost knocked Ricky Hatton’s head clean off of his body but then flet the shame and horror when it looked for a moment that he might die. That’s how I felt with Max Pac. My point is, we as fans are a little ridulous. We pay and expect to see this level of intensity and physicality but then have buyers remorse when it gets real. 

    I believe Chara had intent and definately should get the rest of the season suspension. But, isn’t this what we ask of the players? Are we really that suprised when we get it?

     

  31. Chris says:

    It is the nature of pro sports.  If Gill had done the same thing to Krejci, the same people calling for Chara’s head would be defending Gill.  Watching Chara’s face throughout that play, I don’t see “Angry Chara” or “Revenge Chara”.  When Chara loses it, it is pretty obvious. 

    What Chara did last night was unfortunate.  If he gets suspended for a couple of games, it wouldn’t be a grand injustice to the Bruins.  If he does not get suspended, I’m not going to lose sleep. 

  32. geo_habsgo says:

    Great post! You make really good points. I think part of the onus has to be on the fans that have demanded the game change and the game become more exciting. We look for the vicious hit only to be remorseful when it happens. Its sad and I hope this incident makes every reconsider what it means to respect people whether it be on or off the ice.

  33. eyhp says:

    I will put it this way: watching the replay on video does not come close to matching the viciousness of seeing it live. I was at the game last night, and my seat is lined up directly with the bench. I will always remember the very loud noise of his head banging on the turnbuckle, and Max-Pac lying flat on his stomach. I am sorry but “intent” has nothing to do with it. Max-Pac could have his neck broken and paralysed by that hit, he was hit that hard. The only reason we are talking “intent” is because he wasn’t injured seriously. Some player will die one day and we won’t be talking about “intent” anymore.

  34. Bill H says:

    Very good post, notbigbird.  I agree with your points.  The late hits need to stop, but that isn’t even being considered.  Its called “finishing the check.”  Its an inherent punishing aspect of the today’s game.  Unfortunate but true.

    Your other important point is in regard to intent to injure.  I don’t believe Chara intended to send MaxPac to the hospital.   As Mackenzie pointed out, he probably intended to put him in the players bench and miscalculated.  With the speed of the game these days, players need to back off a bit, or the concussions will continue. 

    Chara should get a 5 game holiday.  Not more, because there was no obvious intent.  But 5 because it was a late hit, it was illegal, and it was dangerous.  But more imporant, the league needs to change the rules.  No head shots.  No late hits.  The game should be about speed and skill.  I know it won’t happen, but the consequences are what we watched last night.

  35. Rugger says:

    I agree, intent is not part of the equation.  It was a dangerous play and players must be heald accountable for their actions intentional or not.

  36. greggiemchabfan says:

    Some are blaming Julien. However, I think it is evident he has little control over his players. Lack of respect by said players for their coach was why Julien was chased out of New Jersey.

  37. matraque says:

    How is there no intent?

    -History between the 2

    -Rivalry between the team

    -Booins being 0-4

    -Booins being Habs bitch since the beginning of time

    -Chara’s frustration

    -…

    ——

    Canadien en 5! Never go Full Retard http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=svwGRJA28lY&feature=related

  38. SeriousFan09 says:

    I wonder how many parents at the Bell Centre or watching on TV last night decided “my kid isn’t playing competitive hockey”.

    If I have kids, they’re certainly not until they fix this garage league nonsense.

     

    – I shall always remember Captain Koivu. Habs and Hockey.

  39. tbovs says:

    I did see the game last night and I did watch the hit on you tube this morning before I wrote anything…and it is CLEAR that Chara was WATCHING THE TURNBUCKLE while he initially made contact with Paciorretty.  It was litterally in the centre of his vision and I will tell you this….every defencemen in the league would try to do the same thing as it is an instant big hit because you are shoving a guy into a wall inreality at 50k/hr and it can get your team going and obviously get you on the TSN top ten list for hit of the year.  It was a selfish action and it was premeditated…and confirmed with his comments saying that max jumped into the partition (ridiculous…should be suspended for idiocy).  For all those that say the game is too fast for it to be premeditated….well your brain can make over 200 million calcs per second and my MD beside my name gives me an expert opinion so in the 3 secs chara could have his life flash before his eyes and plan his after game meal then decide “this punk is gonna get hurt”.  For all those trying to take a neutral stance stating that this was an isolated incident and he is not dirty…all players are a little dirty and if your mad enough you’ll do just ab out anything and if your selfish enough and combine those two….well it can be dangerous.

     

    GO HABS GO

  40. smiler2729 says:

    Right on, Ian. I’m still filled with such hate for Chara and the Bruins, I’m f***ing scaring myself! Last night, I think if I were at the game and there was a Bruins near me, I’d have punched him out.

    They’re no class, yellow scumbags that deserve everything they get (being our bitch for 50+ seasons and having the diSTINKtion of blowing a 3-0 playoff series lead).

    The hockey gods will continue to get them.

  41. nick says:

    You know, if Chara had been backpeddling when he hit Max I could have accepted that he didn’t quite know exactly where he was, etc etc…

    But the fact that the guy skates in a straight line for a good 30 feet, then throwing that punch at the end… I’m sorry but no one here can say that Chara did not see the boards coming. Whatever his intent was, the late  play was very dangerous and uncalled for. For a player of his experience level to try and say he didn’t know where he was, what was happening… etc etc… I call BS. He wouldn’t have made it to the NHL to begin with if he had to skate around with a GPS strapped to his head.

     

     

  42. matrags says:

    this is not tough Boone , look at the picture, and stop rationalyzing A hit clearly outside the rules resulting in potentially serious iinjury. Enough , excuses dont cut it .

  43. matrags says:

    Lost alot of credibility here Chris. Look at the photo, An illegal hit to the head causing serious bodily injury, and your comment about the nature of the game is telling.

  44. habsfan0 says:

    For as many games that Max misses Chara should be suspended for.

  45. twocents says:

    There’s a lot less grey to this than some imply.

    Boone, sorry, but you’re wrong.

    Chara did intend to bang Pacioretty’s head off the turnbuckle, just like in the WWF.

    He perhaps, even likely, didn’t intend to end his career or impact his whole life, but he did intend to slam him into the turnbuckle. The photo, the fact that he completely finishes the hit with no indication of letting up at the last second combined with his reaction and comments afterward are all consistent with this.

    There’s only grey for those who frame the question as intent to severely injure, which can’t be determined. But, the question is, did he intend to direct his head into the turnbuckle? Good evidence exsists he did.

    That fact that he may be too stupid or deluded to realize the consequence of this, is immaterial.

     

  46. Norcal Habsfan says:

    I can’t watch or read any more TSN today. Can’t do it. I get so pissed and juiced up I might hurt someone at work today or flip over a car.  

    McKenzie, Barnaby– shut up!

    Do you resent the 24 Stanley Cups that much? Is objectivity really that difficult?

    Barnaby, with your talent be glad you have job in this economy.

    McKenzie, shut up again.

    McGuire, shut up too…that was preemptive because I know you’re about to piss me off.

     

  47. Barts says:

    Chara might not have a history of doing that sort of thing, but he does have a history with the player, AND…the Bruin’s have a history of doing this to the Habs. See McLaren, Kyle.

  48. Graves says:

    Agreed completely. One of L’antichambre’s “headlines” or whatever they call them last night was “life is more important than a win.” Sums up my feelings pretty accurately.

  49. Ian Cobb says:

    I was so upset last night that I had a hard time sleeping. I am even more angry this morning. I grew up watching this game when there were no helmets worn and players played the game with heavy body checks. But they had respect for one another. And any hit to the head or intent to drive someones head into anything, was not tolerated by fellow team mates.

    The word respect is becoming a lost art in our society, not only on the hockey rink. You see it every day in our youth, and it must change. When people cross the line, they have to pay the price, but unfortunately, if you have money and layers around you, you can get away with even causing death. They would candy coat it as an accident, and bring a ton of paid phony experts to confuse.

    Any contact to the head is NO Fu….. Accident. There should be ZERO tolerance for this type of assault anywhere.

    Big money surrounds our (game) sorry, hockey business. And the big money protects everyone’s ass, but let’s start protecting heads. First by teaching respect, and enforcing respect.

    Lawmakers and law enforcers, get some backbone and do the right thing to protect people. I do not know why green money and yellow bellies, over rule in today’s society.

    STAND UP FOR RESPECT NOW.!

  50. bp says:

    He may not have meant to knock Max out unconscious but he was obviously committing a foul and it went way worse then normal. I put this in the category of the guy who robs the liquor store with a gun and then is surprised someone got hurt. 

    Intent is ridiculous. Until the NHL starts using polygraphs, they should just stick to whether it was a foul and what was the outcome. The fact that Chara may only get a few games because Max fortunately doesn’t appear to have bleeding in his brain is just wrong. 

     

     

     

     

  51. Bill says:

    A lot of those beer-league superstars like to post here, if you haven’t noticed. They usually start posts with “Listen to me, because I played the game” or “Anyone who knows anything about hockey”.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  52. Bill says:

    I reached that conclusion years ago watching AAA and Q games, this certainly does little to change my mind. My kid will stick to something safer with more honourable opponents, like say crocodile wrestling.

    Full Breezer 4 Life

  53. CharlottetownHabbies says:

    They (the league) won’t make a statement with this, why would they?  One of the reasons dropping my sports packages from expressvu ended up not being as difficult a decision as I thought it would be.  If I only watch one game a week I’m less likely to see the ultra-violence that passes for hockey in the NHL.


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