Audio: No suspension for Malone hit fuels plenty of debate

Tampa Bay’s Ryan Malone: His hit on Chris Campoli is the topic of heated conversation today.
NHL Images

• AUDIO: Jacques Martin | Chris Campoli | Josh Gorges | Hal Gill | Erik Cole

• 3:35 pm ET update: No suspension will be given to Tampa Bay’s Ryan Malone for his hit Saturday on Canadiens’ Chris Campoli. Here is the explanation of Brendan Shanahan, the NHL’s disciplinarian.

The team is at a preseason bonding session near Collingwood, Ont.

Patrick V. Hickey is hovering nearby and will be filing updates on the stuff he’s allowed to see. (Primal Scream therapy and internal cleansings will take place behind closed doors.)

Hickey’s first bulletin from Collingwood brings good news: Chris Campoli is on the ice at the Monday morning practice. He also reports that, unlike past years, practices during the final team-building days of camp are closed to the public, though an outdoor autograph area has been set up. Govern yourselves accordingly if you’d planned to drive up from Toronto or other points nearby.

Teammates talk about hit on Campoli

Jack Todd’s take on the season

• Red Fisher’s Top 10: The 1959-’60 Canadiens

J.T. on toughness

Marc Antoine Godin sizes up the team

Puck ready to drop

Below, courtesy of @PKSubban1 on Twitter: From left: Travis Moen, Michael Cammalleri, P.K. Subban and Andrei Kostitsyn heading out to shop for groceries. Or do something else.


  1. C_exacte says:

    maybe this has something to do with shanny and gomer. when gomer and drury came in, shanny and jags were given their papers. And the other week gomer didn’t want to talk about shanny at all in that preseason interview, maybe there’s some locker room beef, maybe my theory is full of beef??

    • Mike D says:

      I thought Gomer did a really good job in that interview of steering clear of any negative comments. Can’t see Shanny having a problem with what Gomer said…assuming he even saw/heard the interview .

      – Honestly yours

  2. DEANDALLEY says:

    Anyone in here old enough to remember when the Habs beat down the “Broad Street Bullies” and took the Cup away from them.

    I tell U sir, that no one would run Kenny Dryden & get away with it!

  3. Sal says:

    It’s freakin unbelievable that, based on the suspensions handed out in the pre-season so far, that Shanahan didn’t see fit to suspend, Malone. It’s same old same old, as far as the Habs go. Chara probably can’t wait to head hunt the Habs with impunity. Or, as somebody on this site already mentioned, Shanny, did Stevie, a reach around.

    Sal from the Hammer

  4. Rainrocket16 says:

    I think the bottom picture with the boys wearing the military gear says it all…..They should start playing with that gear maybe then Shanascam will realize he is wrong. I am about to quit watching hockey altogether if this crap doesn’t stop. I know we are all mad at this non-suspension but its time to quit being surprised folks. Habs are hated more than anyone…even the Bruins..

  5. Harry says:

    That was a head shot and Mr. Shanahan says it happened after Campoli lost the puck……all the more reason for a suspension… Is it because there was no concussion in this instance?… Seems the backlash has happened against the suspensions…all up to now merited and needed to protect the players and reduce injuries and potential fatalities via concussions.
    Is all this because the insurance companies won’t pay or are charging more?
    Malone was out to injure during the game…Suban, Price among others…..
    This NHL has to clean up its act and treat all head shots as offences deserving a suspension.

  6. Habitant in Surrey says:

    …I just logged-in and learned Malone got-away-with-it
    …My jaw dropped …in fact, it’s still on the carpet as I type
    …incredulous is My only feeling at the moment
    …I read an outline for Shanahan’s rationale, but I can only go by My own 2 eyes the other night
    …to Me, Shanahan was The Man before this decision …’a hope’ for credibilty, reason and effectiveness in the NHL to ameliorate a serious problem
    …then Poof !
    …number 1; there must be a serious hate-on vs Our Habs …it seems, the majority of these logic-defying decisions from Campbell and now Shanahan are inexplicably onussed towards the Habs
    …number 2; I did not take seriously several posters’ comments yesterday pointing-out Shanahan and Yzerman are close friends …feeling He had too much integrity to let that influence him …and now, how can I believe anything else that this decision was not ‘influenced’ indeed by cronyism
    …I just don’t want to believe what I am reading
    …incredulous is an understatement

    Habitant means PASSIONATE HOCKEY

  7. cbass says:

    I expected a game or so for this hit, but I understand the league’s reasoning on this since it is a technicality within the rule. I re watched the replay after hearing the verdict and he does in fact set up the hit before he has to stretch out for the puck. My issue with the hit was not that I found it so dirty, but reckless. He didn’t have to hit him, it looked as if the puck would have been easy to pick up. I think people are coming down a little hard on Shanny, when he seems to be trying to clean up the game, and also he’s justifying his reasoning for suspending players (or not) rather than just calling it a “hockey play”.
    Thankfully Campoli wasn’t seriously harmed and seems ok.

  8. Anyone want to spoil my friend who’s a Leafs fan’s pool like we did last year? It’s a yahoo h2h pool

    League ID: 28463
    password: goleafs

    draft is in around 90 minutes.

  9. zak says:

    Shanny’s ruling: There are hits to the head that are hits to the head and there are hits to the head that are not hits to the head

  10. icky pop says:

    Hate to throw out a conspiracy here, but how much of this could have to do with Tampa being Stevie Y’s team? I mean, a total dirty hit through and through.

    The reason he wasn’t suspended was for the fact that campoli lunged for the puck putting himself in a vulnerable position. But any one with half a mind can see that Malone reached/lunged himself to finish the check, as when campoli reached for the puck, it was away from the check. Malone reached his arms out to hit him, nailing campoli in the head. Hockey just keeps getting more unappealing to me.

    The violence in the game must go. I realize the game is just as violent as it always has been. But as the game gets bigger and faster, a person has to understand that certain things about the game have to change.

    But lets just cross that bridge when somebody actually dies, shall we?

    Or maybe we should make Dana white the commissioner. UFC on ice. We are half way there.

  11. cuzzie says:

    As a passionate fan again I’m sort of disappointed with the non reaction from our management. I guess I should be used to it. I don’t like it!

    Stay Thirsty My Friends!

  12. HardHabits says:

    As a Habs fan I am getting pretty tired of seeing this team constantly get on the wrong side of dirty hits, beat downs and questionable on and off ice disciplinary actions and decisions.

    Thankfully the team recognizes that size and grit are a need otherwise a aplayer like Tinordi would have never been drafted. Sadly though he is not enough.

    Last game somebody needed to take out Malone plain and simple. Gill dropping him to the ice was not enough. He should have pounded the crap out of him as well.

    Until the Habs develop that nasty streak that a player like Robinson had back in the day they will be a constant target.

    Should Subban or Price ever get injured on a questionable play don’t cry to Shanny or the league. Remember. Teams don’t need tough players. Speed and skill are all a team needs. Because every Cup winner lacked toughness and was only built on speed and skill.

    • ProHabs says:

      Unfortunately, it is just a matter of time before it is PK or Price. And some of the Hab players have already been on record as saying they would like some protection. But PG and JM are tooo stupid to do something about it.
      Stop counting on the NHL to protect our players PG.

    • Propwash says:

      ” Last game somebody needed to take out Malone plain and simple. Gill dropping him to the ice was not enough. He should have pounded the crap out of him as well.”

      Problem is, that will get Gill suspended.

      • HardHabits says:

        Just like all those Bruins who got suspended for pounding out the Habs last season. Try again PW.

      • LA Loyalist says:

        and so what? It sends a message. Don’t screw with us.

        If my kid got between a big kid and a little kid to protect the little kid, and got thrown out of the game for it, I’d take him out and by him an ice cream.

        Stones man. This isn’t girls field hockey.

        • Chorske says:

          and yet another “girl sport” comment, clearly by a misogynistic moron who has never interacted with female athletes

        • dear LA loyalist

          nobody cares about your kid

          its the truth

          ive only recently warmed up to my nephews

          does it make me a bad person? i dunno, but its human nature to not care about other peoples children

          nobody cares about that baby picture you have

          nobody thinks hes special like you do

          do your kid a favour (beyond the obvious choice of abandonning him and/OR suicide… yeah i said it) stop mentioning him on the internet nobody gives a f[ck!

      • Omit says:


        I’d argue with you, but I never know which one of you to argue with. The one that advocates one position for a day or two, or the other that changes it completely to another one.

        You are consistently inconsistent. But you are seldom right.

        “Time wounds all heels”. – J.L.

        • HardHabits says:

          Ah yes. The bi-polar argument. Just keep pushing yourself to the end of whatever spectrum it is that you lean towards. I am sure if you repeat it enough times to yourself even you’ll believe it.

          Please enlighten me on my shifting positions. I am all ears.

          The only position I’ve been advocating for the longest while is the Habs need to acquire size and grit to compliment their speed and skill.

          Or is it that you haven’t a clue how to respond and instead feel the need to parrot the positions of others here?

          • Omit says:

            Memory loss,eh?

            How about obsessively calling for tanking for most of the previous year and changing your mind once the Habs played in the EFC. And I was one of the first ones to call you on it. Remember? I even joked about refusing to pay the kidnappers for the old HardHabits. I guess somebody did pay the ransom after all.

            Size and grit? The Habs are far from being the smallest team and, in fact, match up with the Bruins very well. Same height and weigh 5 lbs. more,on average, per player. Cole and Yemelin probably increase that stat.

            Btw, did anyone ever tell you you are a bit of a bully? Or am I parroting others again?

            “Time wounds all heels”. – J.L.

          • HardHabits says:

            Actually. I made a deal with one of my colleagues at work that if the Habs made it to the ECF I would can the tank talk and I did.

            However. I still think the Habs should’ve been sellers many times in their past rather than trade away picks for rentals that only moved them up to 17th or 18th over-all and out of the play offs anyways.

            I never in all my life advocated tanking until this scenario happened. My tanking agenda came about only after watching Pittsburgh, Chicago and Washington (and to a lesser extent TBL and Philly) blow past the Habs who continued since 1993 to languish in the middle of the pack.

            You do know that since 1993 the Habs have only finished once in the top 10 and that was the only time they started the play-offs on home ice.

            My position doesn’t shift from left to right to left again. How many times since the ECF have I mentioned tanking apart from humorously?

            Or did you OMIT something between your ears?

            But keep on being a first class aHole. I am no bully either. I don’t pick on smaller people. Kind of hard since I always been the smallest player on any team I’ve played on or the smallest person among my friends.

            I guarantee you though that if we play a contact sport you’d either be hard pressed to catch up with me and could very well learn the lesson of how effective a lower centre of gravity can be.

    • AH says:

      Excellent post!

  13. Everlasting1 says:

    It’s open season on headshots! Just be sure to stay commi
    ted to only hitting lowered heads lol

    When the Hebrew scouts investigate the Promised Land of Canaan and return to discourage the other Hebrews from entering it..”We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” [Numbers 13:33]

    “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

  14. Pucknut says:

    After watching the video again, it appears that the referee’s arm goes up immediately after contact between Campoli & Malone.

    I don’t remember what the penalties were; but, if the initial one was for a hit to the head of Campoli then he would have gotten another 5 for fighting. Right?

    Can someone please clear this up for me? Sorry, but its bugging me.

    • Bripro says:

      Malone got 2 x 5 minutes and a game.
      Gorges got a 2 and a 5 for instigating and fighting.

    • Exit716 says:

      However, the issue is that Campoli was hooked, on the gloves causing him to lose control of the puck. That infraction, uncalled led to the turnover and the hit by Malone.
      Basically the referee caused the hit by his ineptitude…Call the first penalty and then there’s no hit…..Bad officiating all around.

  15. DEANDALLEY says:

    Seems like Brendan did Stevie, his good friend & former teammate a favor!

  16. Chris Higgins says:

    Like it or not, you just got your answer as to how Shanahan would have handled to Chara/Pacioretty incident. Presto bingo, the first event involving a Montreal player is resolved with the usual outcome.

  17. ths says:

    We will just have to wait for the enquiry report from CSIS


    damn Jagr in montreal wouldve been great!!

  19. Neutral says:

    if you can’t match the other team with toughness that’s not their fault as long as everything is done clean. not many teams can match the Habs with speed and skill and they know that so the only way out is to be tough and the Habs can’t handle those teams. maybe now and then but not on a consistant basis. so I guess we had better get use to it and hope they have a good season. I don’t agree with shanny’s call on malone. He should have gotten 1 or 2 games to send a message this kind of behavior is no longer allowed in the NHL. lucky for campoli, it could have been a lot worst

  20. derfab says:

    Shanahan got it right. Malone is a jerk but Campoli held the puck too long, had a brain cramp and put himself in a bad position. My real sense on the play as I saw it happen was that Malone could have taken his head off but actually eased off a little, meaning the new rules are having the intended effect.

    • Omit says:

      Your village just called. They miss you.

      “Time wounds all heels”. – J.L.

      • neumann103 says:

        This comment is full of win.

        Don’t listen to jlgib21 below. There is nothing nasty about the comment, and “immature” is a word used by 13 year old girls to describe someone with no sense of humour.

        The original comment by derfab is foolish. Everyone has a right to an opinion, but if you voice a patently stupid one you might expect to get called on it.

        Here are the clearly idiotic parts of derfab’s post:
        “Shanahan got it right. ”
        “Campoli held the puck too long”
        “Malone could have taken his head off but actually eased off a little”
        “had a brain cramp and put himself in a bad position.”
        “My real sense”
        “the new rules are having the intended effect.”

        Here is what he got right
        “Malone is a jerk”

        “Et le but!”

    • DEANDALLEY says:

      R U FOR REAL?
      R U BLIND?

    • Everlasting1 says:

      eased off by leaving his feet?

      When the Hebrew scouts investigate the Promised Land of Canaan and return to discourage the other Hebrews from entering it..”We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” [Numbers 13:33]

      “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

  21. The Dude says:

    It’s just about time for another good 5 question poll from smartdog and hopefully it will have a question of what should be done about all this. Do it for mofo,please…….

  22. Mike D says:

    Gotta say, I love that AK has a huge smile on his face in that picture!

    Might be the first time I’ve seen him smile (other than when he scores a goal) since we drafted him in 2003. LOL

    – Honestly yours

  23. Bill says:

    Shanahan just officially confused me. Every other head-shot this pre-season was a suspension. Seemed clear-cut. Now it’s screwed. He must’ve found a horse’s head in his bed and decided to dust off Colin Campbell’s crystal ball.

    Hey Shanny, do you feel any lighter now that you’re not carrying around all that credibility?

    Full Breezer 4 Life

    • cuzzie says:

      I’ve seen the play over and over I don’t understand the ruling. This is one Big Bullshit!

      Stay Thirsty My Friends!

    • Mike D says:

      100% agree Bill. Shanny really shat the bed with that decision today. and lost credibility…at least amongst Habs fans.

      *That sound you heard was that of Habs fans hopes dropping that the new NHL disciplinarian wouldn’t be baised against our team*

      – Honestly yours

  24. Hobie Hansen says:

    So I spent the day at work telling everybody that maybe things are changing and teams don’t need an enforcer in today’s NHL.

    Then I hear the radio in the car on my drive home and hear that Malone doesn’t get a suspension. WOW.

    I think Shanahan has been impressive so far in his rulings but this one is a bit of a surprise. I didn’t think it deserved 5-8 games but more like 1-2.

    I haven’t heard his video explanation at this point but in the previous suspensions he’s done an excellent job describing the circumstances. So before I freak out I’ll listen to what he has to say about it.

    Back to the enforcer. Do I think that if we had George Parros on our team and he grabbed Malone and beat the tar out of him, it would it have had an impact on the final score, NO.

    But what’s stopping Malone from coming in here next game and face washing our defense after every whistle and harassing Subban and Campoli all night. Nothing.

    If Malone and others knew that they’d have to answer the bell in front of 21,000 fans at center ice they’d probably think twice about it. Is it really worth trying to get under Subban’s skin only to get punched in the face 15 times by a 230lbs man? I didn’t think so.

    So until fighting is banned, which I wouldn’t mind, we need an enforcer or we’re gone to have to put up with getting smacked around and have many repeats of Gorges getting his clock cleaned or that famous night in Boston last year where Spacek was rag dolled and looked like a fool.

    • Bill says:

      I’ll say this as nicely as I can. According to you, teams with goons on them don’t have other teams make dirty plays against them. That is obviously and demonstrably not the case. How do you fail to see this?

      Full Breezer 4 Life

      • Hobie Hansen says:

        Bill I suffer from a wide range of emotions when something like this happens.

        Like I said in my comment, a fight usually doesn’t impact the score, even though you hear players often say that a good fight charges up the bench and can lead to a goal.

        My thinking though, is that i just hate seeing my team pushed around and beat up. It bugs the heck out of me. So when i see Spacek or Gorges beat up by a player who is only really tough against a team like Montreal, because we have no muscle, it bugs me!

        Do I want head injuries, no.

        But i don’t like losing fights on the scoreboard or in a tussle. That’s just the kind of guy I am. Can’t help it I guess?

        Until they remove fights from the NHL, which I’m actually for, I want our team winning them and not being beaten up all season.

    • G-Man says:

      “But what’s stopping Malone from coming in here next game and face washing our defense after every whistle and harassing Subban and Campoli all night.”

      Tod Gill

  25. DEANDALLEY says:

    Chara damn near takes Max’s head off …

    Ference damn near takes Halpern’s head off …

    Malone damn near takes off Campolli’s head off …

    I see a patern here.

    When was the last or only time a player has been suspended for a dirty hit on a Montreal Canadien?

  26. Marc10 says:

    This just means PK will lay out Stamkos, Vinny or St Louis. Take your pick TB. Oh and he’ll shatter them without targeting the head.

    Ridiculous explanation by Shanny.

  27. Bripro says:

    Ted Bird just commented on CTV and shares our views about Shanahan missing the boat, “unless he’s just another one of Bettman’s puppets”.

    • shootdapuck says:

      Just remember last week there was an “unnamed” NHL exec who was not happy with the direction taken by Shanahan with the heavy suspensions. Appears now Shanahan got the “memo”!

      … the fans of the Boston Bruins now have lost forever any right to complain that “the league” is out to get their team, and that the Montreal Canadiens have some kind of pull inside the NHL home office.

      Charles P. Pierce – Boston Globe

    • Mike D says:

      Awesome – I like this Bird fellow.

      – Honestly yours

  28. AK_PK_Usay says:

    Im officially a Gomez believer, this guys is SMART!

  29. ProHabs says:

    First of all congrats to Big Ted for the longest post ever on HIO. Awesome.

    So Malone is not suspended eh. How many more examples does Habs management need to realize the league will never protect the Habs skilled players. Get some 4th line size to protect the skill PG.

    • Bill J says:

      “skilled” ? I thought we reserved that title for players with talent above others… By the standards you just offered, every player in the NHL is skilled. Thereby, it’s not a question of Montreal’s skilled players, more “Montreal’s players”

      No ?

      Edit: I mean this to say that no one considers Campoli “skilled” , refer to how many teams that passed or traded him away.

      He’s far from the skilled category, if you ask me.

      If you want to add an avatar here, read this and follow the steps

      Go Habs Go!

    • Kelvinator30 says:

      No suprise at all about the non-suspension. If there is one message we’ve been hearing from the league office it that, while headshots and payer safety are a priority….as a player, you can do whatever the **** you want to do to any Montreal player with complete impunity.

      Seriously, do you think for 1 minute that if it was Stamkos or Crosby or Kane or some other star on an American team who got hit while in a prone position that there would not have been a suspension?

      In this age where the league won’t enforce the rules when it comes to the Montreal Canadiens..we must enforce it ourselves. It stinks. I don’t like it. I despise goon hockey, but it is what it is. I’m tired of seeing my team be the victim here…I want to see someone with a Boston or Philadelphia or Tampa sweater be the ones to leave on stretcher.

  30. slychard says:

    Cole will be fine. He’s looked decent so far and only gonna get better.

  31. Propwash says:

    Rewatching the clip, Malone’s feet left the ice just before the hit. Isn’t that a big no-no?

    • Everlasting1 says:

      I noticed that too. He jumped into it. At the 1:12 mark
      Apparently Campoli’s head wasn’t low enough. Wonder if Shanny caught that.
      Too the ones reiterating that he should have kept his head does one do that when reaching for the puck? Perhaps you can demonstrate that one for us. Sure he was in a vulnerable position, and Malone took advantage of that in a lost cause. He was committed to pre-season headhunting 🙂

      When the Hebrew scouts investigate the Promised Land of Canaan and return to discourage the other Hebrews from entering it..”We saw the Nephilim there (the descendants of Anak). We seemed like grasshoppers in our own eyes, and we looked the same to them.” [Numbers 13:33]

      “We don’t see things as they are, but as we are.” – Anais Nin

  32. slychard says:

    Wow HABFAN THX for the Yemelin link. It’s quite hilarious how they literally translate without restructuring or editing. Makes for an entertaining read. Like talking to some freshly arrived Russian or eastern Europeans I meet here in the states. That’s exactly how they speak. I hope he doesn’t get neglected by Martin because I beleive in time he’ll be a great asset to this team.

  33. Sharks9 says:

    I know people here hate Eklund with a passion(because he’s a huge idiot and his rumors are never true) but when I saw his prediction for the Habs this year I was actually wishing one of his predictions would be right for once!

    Here it is:
    Montreal: Carey Price will finally get the recognition and win the Hart Trophy and the Habs offense will be “better” bolstered by a breakout season from by Max Pacioretty. PK Subban will also start to draw attention for the Norris and the NHL will finally get behind the guy as one of the most intriguing and interesting stars the league has ever seen. PK is hands down the best interview in the game today, and he will start to draw more favorable coverage for his exuberance than for a perceived lack of respect for veterans

    25 before 14

  34. petefleet says:

    The hit was obviously a hockey play and couldn’t possibly been avoided by the hitter. It is also obvious that Campoli wanted to get his head taken off by the goon that was looking for someone to victimize all night. And it is also obvious that nothing has changed in the NHL when it comes to looking out for your buddies. Campbell / Shannahan, no difference. You cannot convince me that there wasn’t a phone call from or to Stevie Y before that decision came down. I have alot of respect for Stevie Y but on this, I think that him and Shanny smell and I mean smell bad.

    I didn’t say you were lying, I said I don’t believe you.

    ***Habs Forever***

  35. captaink4life says:

    Not sure if this has already been posted

    It’s a 2011-2012 season preview by VazorProduction. Definitely worth checking out!!!

    You will always be a Canadien in my eyes, Saku

  36. slychard says:

    Congratulations BIG TED you’ve just won the first ‘war and peace’ post.

  37. Big Ted says:

    I’ll agree with Shanahan on one thing: he’s in a tough position. Why? Because head shots and legal body checks are on the same spectrum and it’s a slippery slope to start climbing up. He’s at least been consistent in stating that the hits that will be given suspensions will be ones where the head is targeted and where the player doesn’t make a movement simultaneous or just prior to the collision. However, how one defines “just prior to” is a subject of much debate. To me, Campoli’s movement was not just prior to the hit, at least in hockey terms. I referred to this prior to the announcement, but Campoli’s head is down prior to him hitting the top of the circle. On the camera angle looking at Malone’s chest, you can see he braces for the hit after Campoli is already halfway to the face-off circle and after the puck is already off his stick. I realize hockey is a fast game, but I feel like a second and a half is enough time for a player to let up on the contact. Maybe he can’t avoid running into Campoli entirely, but he can definitely refrain from putting the weight of his check into the opponent’s head the way he did. Campoli did have his head down, but this was not a sudden change in position and I don’t think having your head down entitles another player to lay a violent check on you. In the old days, you had to keep your head up, but the new rule clearly states the onus is on the player making the check and Malone had the time to lessen the impact here. This is not the case whee Campoli saw Malone coming and turned his back to create a hit from behind. In fact, it’s quite the opposite; if Campoli had had any idea Malone was coming, his reaction would not have been to put his head down but rather to put his arms up. This further supports the theoy that Malone made the decision to hit Campoli after the latter had already put his head down.

    Second, it was clear from Malone’s play the entire night that he was looking to hurt someone, or at least impose his physicality on a smaller opponent. He cross-checked Price into the net. He tried to start a fight with Subban. And I believe he saw the opportunity to hit a vulnerable opponent. I don’t think he meant to make the contact with the head, but similar to the discussion around the Chara hit last year, intent is not the issue. You can never really prove or disprove intent. What you can suggest is that this was a player who was going out of his way to intimidate that night and who made a reckless play. If the NHL truly wanted to get heah shots out of the game, this is the type of play it could have easily punished without anyone really being upset about it. If Shanahan had given Malone 3 games, 5 games, even 8 games, I don’t think there would have been many people (outside of Don Cherry) up in arms. There might have been people who disagreed with the decision, but I think most would recognize that Malone’s hit was at the very least reckless and lacking respect for an opponent and I for one don’t see a problem with trying to take this out of the game. In the NFL, they have instituted a policy to penalize any hit on the quarterback’s head. It doesn’t matter if it was accidental. It doesn’t matter if the QB has his head down at hip level. A hit to the head as the primary point of contact is a violation. It’s working there and you have even bigger guys who are also making split-second decisions. So why is it that the NHL has to create a grey zone for interpreting head shots? Again, there will be people for and people against suspending Malone, but if you’re going to err on one side of what Shanahan calls “a tough call,” why not err on the side of safety? There will be people who argue it will take hitting out of the game, but there have been plenty of big hits that haven’t targeted the head (see Jarrd Tinordi’s hit for example). If you teach players to respect the rule, they will learn to abide by it, and the game can still be exciting and physical.

    What I find most disappointing in all this, however, is that Malone has now run two players in the head and yet remains a non-offender. In the playoffs last year, he hit Pascal Dupuis in the side of the head but was let off by Colin Campbell on what was deemed to be a borderline infraction at that time too. Now he has done it again and yet for the second time, not only has he escaped punishment, he has also escaped being labeled a repeat offender [i]when[/i] this happens again. Not [i]if[/i] this happens again, but [i]when[/i] this happens again. Malone is a big guy and while he has talent, he’s also shown he can be reckless and so long as the NHL continues to allow this, he won’t have to think twice about how he plays the game. So like Chara, when Malone pulls something like this again, he’ll face a minimal suspension whereas a guy like Cammalleri has a suspension to his name already and will be labeled a repeat offender even though he rarely hits, never mind throwing a head shot. At the very least, Shanahan should have come out with a public warning to Malone saying that although he’s been let off easy this time, he has two strikes against his name and that the NHL will be watching him closely for any further offences.

    So where does that leave us? Some will say Shanahan is no better than Campbell, but I’ll try my best to view each man independent of the other. Yes, Shanahan has ties to Steve Yzerman, who just happens to be the GM for the team Malone plays for. But Shanahan also spent his better years as a Red Wing and he suspended Smith for 8 games. Campbell on the other hand had a son playing for the team he ardently refused to hit with suspensions and there was public proof of letters he had written indicating his bias. As I said, I do believe this hit landed Shanahan in a grey area, but I do think that based on what I have stated above, that a suspension was justified if he was as serious as he says he is about player safety. In the Smith incident, the player also moves his head into the path of the hit, so the fact remains that in assessing these incidents for suspensions, Shanahan still has the ability to spin the details any which way he wants. If you institute a rule like the NFL has where a hit to the head is a hit to the head, you take out this grey area that we’re in now and you trump the debate about intent and about whether a certain player has a record and about what constitutes being “just prior to” contact. Clearly, 1.5 seconds is short enough to be considered just prior, but 3 seconds (as we’ve seen with other incidents this year) is too long. So who is Shanahan to decide that the right amount of time is 2 seconds or 2.7 seconds or whatever it may be in his head? For now, I’ll be thankful Campoli is ok, but what I’ve learned from this incident is that although Shanahan has set the bar a little higher than Campbell on what is passable and what isn’t, that bar continues to be ill-defined and it continues to be re-defined based on one man’s judgment rather than an objective rule.

    • The Dude says:

      ‘If the glove don’t fit…you can’t com-mit !’…I think if Campoli was in traction Shanny would have given Malone 7 games.

    • HabinBurlington says:

      just as Chara remains a non-offender. Frustrating indeed.

    • JF says:

      Excellent analysis of the incident, Shanahan’s decision, and its consequences. The hit was very similar to MacArthur’s hit of Abdelkader, yet one hit merited a suspension, the other did not. So instead of a clear-cut rule – you hit someone’s head, you’re out – we have a large grey area in which the decision will depend on Shanahan’s interpretation. It will be instructive to see, once the season begins, what percentage of hits are interpreted as resulting at least in part from a movement on the part of the victim, also what players are involved. Today’s decision seems to provide Shanahan with a way to avoid giving significant suspensions to star players.

      Good point about Malone’s record remaining clean. As long as you’re not suspended, you’re not a repeat offender. Another useful loophole when a star player is involved. Chara, Mike Richards – neither has ever offended.

  38. slychard says:

    All thumbs ya know

  39. --Habs-- says:

    Only way the NHL will ever look responsible is to hand reviews over to an independent body. Putting NHL players in charge of investigation is like putting a software developer in charge of quality assurance.

  40. slychard says:

    Maybe my sentence structure is poor but give me a break I’m typing on an iPhone here

  41. christophor says:

    Is no one going to comment on that photo?! Especially about Kostitsyn?!

  42. slychard says:

    Profile as in criminal profiling, you live in LA no? You should have heard that about your cops a few times. Google it.

  43. HabinBurlington says:

    Fyi Artyukhin has indeed signed another KHL contract and is playing in the K. However Toronto Maple Leafs are willing to trade a concussed Colton Orr for AK and a 1st round pick for those interested in such a move.

  44. sampson12 says:

    ESPN has the habs at 18 in their preseason power rankings:

    “They’re not big enough up front and are suspect along the blue line, and it’s too much to ask netminder Carey Price to repeat last season’s success. Plus, Erik Cole is not built for the Montreal spotlight.”

    Scott Burnside doesn’t know squat. What does he mean Cole isn’t built for the spotlight? Is there a reason for that?

    Plus he has the Panthers 3 spots ahead of us..

    • govenah says:

      Anybody know whats up with the website. There is no way to register. It’s been saying Registration is currently closed for” for months.

    • Say Ash says:

      Cole’s one year in a hockey market was a stinker.

      • DearyLeary says:

        Had nothing to do with the fact that the Oilers were horrible that year… yeah… nothing at all.

        Cole will never be a 1A type player, but he’ll pot 20-30 goals on a good team. And Montreal is heads and tails above what Edmonton was when they had Cole.

        Size, speed, pressure, goals. Cole, along with Pacioretty are exactly the kind of players that fans have been clamouring for the last few years. We pick up two of them in our lineup (along with White, and Eller who are some bigger bodies) and people still cry about size.

        Cole will be fine. He looked great alongside Pleks and Cammy.

  45. --Habs-- says:

    Now my letter to Sidney Crosby:
    Dear Sidney Crosby,
    You are a very very rich man! As you can see by this last episode in NHL Teeter Tauter rulings your life is no longer safe. I would tell your employer you still feel light headed, then go sit on a beach with the most beautiful women in the world in Fiji. Do this before you will never know your on a beach in Fiji.. ….Relax, filthy rich and call Mr Shanahan and Mr Bettman every day with your updated health. Open a rehab center on the Island calling it the Recovery Center & SPA for Battered NHL Players.

  46. --Habs-- says:

    Letter from the NHL to the Montreal Canadian, code named “Habs”
    Dear Mr Martin.
    As Senior Vice President of Player Safety and Hockey Operations we have reviewed the incident on Saturday evening. We have concluded that your player Mr Compoli was the aggressor in the incident and Mr Malone was the victim. We in Player Safety feel Mr Camoli should not have tried so hard to make a play after loosing the puck. If he wouldn’t have tried so hard Mr Malone would not have been placed in such a discriminating position of and forcing him to assault your player! Therefore we are suspending Mr Campoli 10 games for playing the game of hockey while we exonerate Mr Malone of any responsibility including assaulting a player with the intent to injure and send him on a 2 week paid vacation to Fiji so he can recover from the accusations and return to play with a clear mind and conscience. As for Mr Campoli we recommend he be send to the AHL for rehabilitation and retraining on the game as to make it safer for players like Mr Malone.

    Senior Vice President of Player Safety
    Mr Bandahand

    • Bripro says:

      Discussion prior to issuance of letter, as recorded by Gary Buttman’s picture frame wire tap in Shanahan’s office:

      (phone rings) Hello? ……speaking.
      (buzz buzz at other end)……oh say Stevie, howz it goin’?
      (buzz buzz) yeah I know. Your guy’s put me in a bind.
      (buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz buzz )
      ….OK, I’ll take care of it, but you owe me.
      I’ve gotta go see daddy Campbell and ask for advice on this one.
      (buzz buzz ) yeah…..OK……OK……OK…yeah, no sweat, it’s taken care of. By the way, how are Lisa and the girls? (buzz buzz ).
      Yeah well tell them Uncle Shanny misses them too!
      ….yeah, see ya on the course.

  47. Captain aHab says:

    Artyukhin is a guy I could see. He skates pretty well from what I can remember and he hits a ton.

  48. Mikey_39 says:

    Wow lost a lot of respect for what Shanahan was doing, and this further fuels my paranoia that the league is anti-montreal. Hardest decision? He’s 6 foot 4 and his skates leave the ground to hit someone smaller than him. How is that a hard decision? And he had time to stop. Everything about this hit was dirty. The fact that Campoli bent down to retrieve the puck only further supports that the other guy had plenty of time to stop

  49. slychard says:

    ‘these are professional men who do a job’. Just like those honest politicians who have their constituents in mind, the racist cop protecting and profiling the neighborhood, the boyscout leader, the rogue priest preying at the alter… Need I say more? Come on and get real Manapart. People are people.

  50. Captain aHab says:

    Bring up Alex Henry for the Buffalo game (let’s face it, the NHL doesn’t care about our games before that one) and have him skate hard towards Ryan Miller and suddenly loose his footing at full speed and absolutely cream Miller to the back of the net. Then bring someone else up for the Pittsburgh game once Henry is suspended to see if Malkin’s knees can bend the other way.

    • shiram says:

      Is that really what you want to see in hockey?

      If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

      • Captain aHab says:

        Nope…no more than I want to see some guys / teams get preferential treatment. This league has joke officiating and joke management. Look to the NFL for serious officiating. If a team is driving the field going for the game tying score and an offensive player holds on the tying TD, the call is made. Doesn’t matter what part of the game you’re in or who does it…it gets called. And you don’t hear people after the game saying: well they should have let them play. The NHL is bush league and needs to clean up.

  51. Propwash says:

    This all sparked after PK threw a perfectly good check on Lecav and leveled him, I guess some commentator on some hockey program (lookin’ at you CBC) is going to whine and moan that Subban should tone it down.

  52. Mats Naslund says:

    I’m still struggling to find a difference between MacArthur’s hit and this one. In both cases a player is extended for a loose puck. In both cases the player decides to go with the hit regardless. I think the 2 games that were given in CM’s case were very reasonable in that the intent of the punishment is to deter others from doing exactly what both of these players did in that scenario.

    Now, by allowing this ‘grey area’ every single decision will be micro analyzed to find if any player can be seen at any angle, and any speed to have contributed to his injury. Bad move on Shanny’s part.

    • Captain aHab says:

      Nope, this is now the “star player headshot” out clause. When a fourth liner headshots, he’ll get the book thrown at him but when a star will do it, it’ll be because the other player moved his head.

      You can also call it the: “head shot on any Hab player clause”.

      This smacks of a rape victim being told that he/she was asking for it.

      I’m sure the league thinks this is a great move by Shanny. Pretty sure the videos will disappear too and we’ll be told that videos were used early on to show the decision process more clearly but that it isn’t needed anymore.

    • samTHEman says:

      But with the speed of the game players don’t stop and think “Oh wait a minute…didn’t so and so get suspended for a hit like the one i’m about to commit?”.

      The way I see it suspensions have become simply a way of punishing players. I don’t see the long-term fruit of suspensions actually taking place, which is ultimately reducing (and eventually eliminate) checks to the head and illegal blindside hits.

      We’ve seen the same hits to the head happen time after time even after Shanahan suspended 5 players in the span of a week! What’s he up to now? 7-8 suspended players? And players aren’t getting the message. That’s because hockey players aren’t programmed robots. You can’t just change the way you play. When you’re on the ice you’re in the moment and you forget and deliver that hit.

      It’ll take a heck of a long time before headshots are gone, and it starts with the way you coach players from when they pick up the game at a young age.

      It’s P.K. Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime

  53. samTHEman says:

    🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂
    It would be nice to finally have someone that can do that ON our team.

    It’s P.K. Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime

  54. Woodman91 says:

    I’m undecided on whether or not the Habs really need an enforcer, but I am leaning slightly towards no. But man wouldn’t it be nice to watch players that cheap shot our players have to answer to the unforgiving fists of some 6’5″ monster?

  55. Woodman91 says:

    Really!!?? No suspension!!!??? Even the morons on CBC said they fully expected a suspension in the works… So I guess if a players head is at arm level he is allowed to take a run at it?

    Under that logic if a player has fallen to the ice, then an opposing player should be allowed to step on his face…?

  56. HabinBurlington says:

    Looking forward to Thursdays game. Don’t agree with Shanahan, but am curious to see what happens on the next head shot. He set some precedence now on players leaving themselves vulnerable. Curious what happens next time a star player is left vulnerable and taken advantage of.

    Really hope Eller, White and Moen and are healthy soon as well.

    Our roster is what it is currently and hopefully this team does well. If along the way PG can make some adjustments would like that, but don’t see much changing for awhile.

    • 123456 says:

      agree – imagine crysby in his first game back getting smashed in the head because he moved his head ever so slighty and get leveled….. you know without a full body check and with the head being the only point of contact.

  57. J_P says:

    Honestly, how can shanahan say he wants to clean up the game when he doesnt suspend someone for what he even says was a “difficult decision”. If the decision is difficult, he should have gotten one game. Now next time Malone pulls that type of garbage, he’s not going to be judged as a repeat offender.

    • samTHEman says:

      Exactly. You’re trying to take hits to the head out of the game and cause for change. Makes more sense to hand down a suspension for a “borderline” hit than not to. You’re trying to eliminate head shots FFS….Shanahan MEGAFAIL on this one.

      It’s P.K. Tiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiime

  58. Get Well Soon Ian C

    Shane Oliver
    Brandon, MB,Canada
    R7B 2R7
    Ph- 204 724 8418

  59. 123456 says:

    come on guys – i’m sure the habs have moved past this.

    next game against tampa – only if it’s a 4 goal game in the third period – cheap shot stamkos and call it even.

  60. ifitwasnt4kovalev says:

    if pacioretty played for bruins and chara played for the habs………

    1. we would win the stanley cup
    2. chara would have been suspended for 30 games if he ran his head into the boards.
    3. call ian shultz up for the next game against the lightning, clearly gauthier will not sign a tough guy, so please lets call a player up that can dance.

    • bleedhabs81 says:

      I don’t understand… if we had Chara we would need to call up Shultz to play the lightening????

      • ifitwasnt4kovalev says:

        good point, i like you.

        we have chara!!!……..why did he not stick up for campoli!!!!!!????????

        • bleedhabs81 says:

          No, I am not playing this game with you. I was just wondering why we need to call up Shultz if we had Chara. It seemed like point #3 was completely indepedant of your statement about us having Chara and they have Max, but you listed it as if it was dependant… and I was just being a jerk by asking you to clarify the thought process.

          Also, if we had Chara we would not win the cup. We needed scoring, not D.

          Chara may have been suspended if he was on any other team (as I do feel there was a bias with the Bruins)… but only one game… he is still a star afterall.

  61. The Dude says:

    If Markov ever plays I figure he’ll last all of 2 games and then a Malone or Neil sandpaper type player will take out that knee for the last time and NO ONE CAN STOP THEM! I’m now seeing DD standing up for the team and his back-up Gomez as Martin places his hand on White’s shoulder and points out that Hamilton is a bus ride away!

  62. MasterHab says:

    All this latest non-decision does is further highlight the need for the Habs to have a deterrant because if they’re waiting for the league to act as their enforcer through the use of supplementary discipline they’ll be waiting a long time.

    I wouldn’t care about Malone not being suspended had there been someone on the Habs roster who could have taken him apart. But all he did was injure Campoli and nearly do the same to Gorges.

    The team either needs to get tougher or cleverer. If they won’t take on a rugged player who’s willing and able to handle himself with his fists, then they need some smaller “SOB” type players who will target the other team’s skill players. Maybe that’s a message opposing teams might finally heed: you take runs at our players, your players will be targeted too. How eager would Malone be to crush Campoli if he knew that St. Louis or Stamkos or Vinny would get slashed or high-sticked in retaliation?

    But Jacques Martin never does anything offensive. He’s all about defence. But part of defence is defending yourself. He currently does not have a roster able to do that.

    • 123456 says:

      i dont see the need for a tough guy – just the need for a guy to take liberties with stars from other teams…. take a 5 minute penalty – its 5 minutes out of about 5,000 minutes in a season!!!

  63. sane hockey fan says:

    skate with your head up there chris

  64. Timo says:

    Well… Shanahan lasted grand total of 7/8 of a pre-season. Like yours truly said before, he is the same as the rest of the crooks up there. FU Shanny… hope you get one to the head soon.

  65. deuce6 says:

    Why do players always get away with murder when it comes to our team? lol


    Yes, I’m a Hab fan..Wanna fight about it?

    • ifitwasnt4kovalev says:

      deuce buddy! …….im not gonna say i told you so, but malone not being suspended, makes me want a goon on the team that much more!……not even a enforcer, a neil or a lucic…I WANT A GOON…..these guys get away with murder when it comes to montreal….and i wont try to guess why…………i just want a couple of guys that can defend our very talended, honest players……..they deserve more. (not taking anything away from gorges……..but the kid could have injured himself by sticking up for campoli…………and he did for 2 reasons, he’s a warrior and he knows there is no one else stand up for his teammates)!

      • Mattyleg says:

        Because getting into a fight is going to stop Ryan Malone from doing that again?
        IIIIIIIIIIIIIII don’t think so.

        —Hope Springs Eternal—

        • ifitwasnt4kovalev says:

          haha, i like the i dont think so.

          not saying i want someone to stop ryan malone, i just want him to pay the price for trying to take someone out.

          i dont want a suspension, i dont want someone to scare him away from hitting our guys. I just want someone to defend our players, not gorges…….how difficult is that to understand……..its a shame watching the habs these days………at least 10 years ago, shayne corson would drop the gloves and take care of who ever was on the ice……..its tough to take watching our talended and very honest players get embarassed like that every night………

          • shiram says:

            But they won 5-1, where’s the embarrassement in that?

            If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

          • ifitwasnt4kovalev says:

            they won 5-1 ? they were already winning 5-1 when campoli got hit…….thats embarassement, sore losers that know no one will punish them for going after our players…….

          • shiram says:

            So the Habs players should feel embarrassed because the other team being sore losers resort to illegal plays?
            Makes no sense.

            If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

          • ifitwasnt4kovalev says:

            shiram, please ignore my posts, i apologize for trying to explain something that makes soooooo much sense, especially with the recent events, campoli hit, chara hit, and others…..

          • shiram says:

            I will certainly do that from now on.

            If you don’t grok it, drokk it!

        • Habs_4_ever says:

          No, but I’m going to feel a lot better knowing that he didn’t get away with it unpunished.

          “That’s the save of the year and it’s not even the year yet!”

  66. stevieray says:

    Open season on any Hab !!! Damn Vegetarians

  67. unsure if it was mentioned, apologies if it has, but hats off to HIO to posting gazette articles from now as opposed to the gazette…

  68. arcosenate says:

    You know there’s a bit of context to that hit as well, Malone was looking to hurt someone all night, that really should have been factored in. I am not surprised he got no suspension though, sadly. Blaming Campoli for the hit is Shanahan attempting to back off a bit after all the suspensions, he was getting some heat lately. Unfortunately he chose to ignore the context of the game Malone was playing.

    I still think Arthyukin in a Habs uniform wouldn’t be a bad thing for deterence, I am not saying he would have to go out and fight every night, he can skate and hit, perfect 4th liner.

    I know, never happen.

  69. HabinBurlington says:

    Pretty Cool pic above, hey maybe JM has the team doing some army training to get ready for the season.

  70. homerbowen says:

    The sad thing is most teams facing ours are going to be saying “take the body, and take it hard” because even if a Hab player stands up for his teammate none of them are tough. We have a few good talented players, however, to a man they are a team of pussies and no one fears playing us. Expect a lot of injuries this year I’m afraid.

  71. Habs_4_ever says:

    Malone must be laughing his a$$ off.

    “That’s the save of the year and it’s not even the year yet!”

  72. Mats Naslund says:

    The main problem surrounding the NHL’s disciplinary body has been, and remains that it is run by “NHL” guys whose training is in hockey and not logic.

    They are easily swayed by illogical, and unimportant reasoning when coming to a judgment. I love Shanahan. I respect the guy even though my team was on the losing end of this decision – but his logic for coming to said decision is flawed.

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