UPDATE 11:20am: The Senators have confirmed that Daniel Alfredsson suffered a concussion on the Hagelin hit, but have also confirmed that Alfredsson is a game time decision. He took part in the full Sens practice today.
-As reported everywhere, Carl Hagelin was suspended for three games and Matt Carkner for one. I was surprised by the length of the suspension for Hagelin, but it’s only really a “win” for Ottawa if Alfredsson can play. The Rangers statement following the suspension was interesting: “we are thoroughly perplexed in the ruling’s inconsistency with other supplementary discipline decisions that have been made throughout this season and during the playoffs.” It’s absolutely accurate, although that doesn’t mean the suspensions weren’t warranted.
–Paul MacLean confirms none of the black aces are expected to play, as he’ll go to the scratches before them “We’ve considered everyone that is here, but we haven’t made any final decisions and we’ll wait to see what Alfredsson says tomorrow.” I think the key word in that sentence is “here”, because I think Jakob Silfverberg would get the same consideration (if not more) as a Bobby Butler or Rob Klinkhammer if available.
-Speaking of Silfverberg, Brynas lost 4-3 in OT yesterday, meaning he has at least one more game to play before being available to the Sens.
–John Henkelman writes about Ottawa’s NCAA and European prospects (suggesting Chris Wideman could play some games in Binghamton this season, which may prove difficult with their season). There’s nothing new here, but for those looking for a refresher it’s succinct and to the point.
-The NHL seems to have achieved what it wanted with the Penguins antics yesterday. The officials have the powers to prevent this kind of circus from developing (see below), but no effort was made to do so by Eric Furlatt and Francois St. Laurent. It hasn’t been that long since the previous controversy about Crosby was raging and already some of the dialogue in the media has changed, with Hockey Night in Canada actually allowing unchallenged criticism of him (via P. J. Stock). His petulant post-game comments won’t help his image. Michael Grange looks at the whole phenomena of retribution in this year’s playoffs and points to the two incidents that seemed to spark it: the non-suspension of Shea Weber and the lack of penalisation of Brian Boyle. Teams feel like the NHL won’t protect or punish them, so they have to police themselves (Pierre LeBrun puts as much emphasis on the officiating, although his suggestion that in the good old days enforcers kept this nonsense from happening is laughable–go back to Grange’s article to recall what that era was like).
-The officials in the Vancouver-Los Angeles game last night demonstrated how to keep a game from getting out of control, as after Brown‘s hit on Sedin the refs (Kevin Pollock and Kelly Sutherland) started calling a lot of penalties and the circus stopped almost immediately.
This article is written by Peter Levi, be sure to follow @eyeonthesens