Bourque Suspended, Stajan hurt, Byron recalled


(pic courtesy Montreal Hockey talk)


Some quick hits today as news has been popping up on twitter this afternoon.

Firstly, Rene Bourque has been suspended for two games after his hit from behind on Seabrook. The obligatory Shanaban video:

Im ambivalent on the sentence. I don’t think there was malice in the hit since it looked like Seabrook’s last minute turn towards the boards was the main issue. Not blaming the victim here, because Seabrook doesn’t have eyes in the back of his head either. Just one of those plays that goes badly due to circumstances. That said, Bourque bears the ultimate responsibility as the hitter in the situation, so I’m not going to protest too loudly in his favor.

Secondly, Stajan has been placed on IR by the Flames due to a leg injury suffered against the Hawks. Matt has played relatively well on the Flames 4th line recently, which is damning with faint praise, I know. At least he hasn’t been a detriment I guess. Roman Horak will likely find his way back into the line-up as a result.

Finally, Calgary has also recalled Paul Byron owing to the absence of Bourque and Stajan. In 18 games for the Heat this year, Byron has just four goals and seven points. That said, he looked a bit more comfortable in the big league than Nemisz in his recent cup of coffee, so he probably deserves another look.

  • RexLibris

    Shanahan seems to be getting ever more random and mystifying in his rulings. Bourque 2 games. Cole nothing for a deliberate chickenwing elbow to Larson’s head. Ovechkin nothing for a cheap deliberate attempt to injure Chris Neal with a spear. Lucic a random one game for what seems to be the standard 2 game suspension for hit to the back. Sutton 8 games for a 2 minute charging penalty because he has a history. I had hopes for the guy at the beginning of the season but he just seems to pull these rulings out of his nether regions and then justifies them with a video where he tries to read players minds to establish intent, or blames the victim. It is worse than maddening.

  • Jeff Lebowski

    To me if that play run out with no bobble by Seabrook Bourque gets him with a clean hit.

    I think Bourque expected Seabrook to play the puck (to a wide open Toews or Hossa up the wall) and contact would have been to Seabrook’s left side.

    Bourque committed to his check and when Seabrook bobbled the puck he stopped turning left and his shoulders were parallel to boards instead of perpindicular (geometry for you).

    Bad call Shanny and par for the course with the reffing that game.

    If Byron can win a draw he could make himself real useful.

  • RexLibris

    This is the first time I have seen it, but having watched the entire video, my take on it is that, regardless of the fact that it was against the boards as they bend into the corners, Bourque was still timing himself to make contact while Seabrook would have been a few feet from the glass. If it had been a hit against the end boards, or on the sidewall, the same call would likely still have come about. I agree with you, Kent, that it doesn’t look like a “bad” hit (Richards on Booth, or Cooke on Savard) where the intent is to injure. It just looks like a dumb hit, like a 6’7″ Andy Sutton leaving his feet to hit a 6’4″ Ponikarovsky. Two games is probably about right here, in my view.

    I was wondering if, with Stajan and Bourque gone, Horak would get the first call.

    I am curious about your take on one thing though, Kent. The Flames have allowed, to date, 94 GA. The teams they are mostly competing with for a playoff position have allowed, on average, about 10 fewer. I’m wondering if this is an inflated total from a few blowouts (I can’t really think of any, off the top of my head) or if you think they are trending up or down in this regard. For team with Calgary’s reputation of the last few years, a -12 goal differential at this stage in the season seems out of place.

  • RexLibris

    I really dont have an issue with the 2 games Bourque got. The players decisions are split second & they need to get a safety & responsiblity incorporated automatically into those decisions. Thing is, how was Lucic’s hit any safer than Bourques & he’s a friggin repeat offender not that long ago. Thats BS & I heard people complain the Bruins get favoritism & Im starting to concur.
    Any word how serious Stajans injury is? Damn, he was just starting to increase his trade value.

  • RKD

    Shanny has the toughest job in the NHL. When I watch that play it appears that Seabrook is bent and Rene is going forward hoping to hit him higher but instead Rene kind of falls over and into him and maybe that extra speed pushes Seabrook’s head into the glass.

    It’s funny when you watch it at normal speed it looks like an incidental play. However, at the slower replay speed it looks like Bourque is pushing forward intentionally at the last moment.

    He got a major and was ejected, I think that should have been enough. He’s never been suspended before.

    Won’t be able to trade Stajan now that he’s injured, if there are any takers. If he has a high ankle sprain, he’ll be out a long time.

    • RexLibris

      It’s simple. The Flames didn’t have Lidstrom with whom they could pair White.

      Some players just don’t fit with the roster that a team has. The Oilers tried for years to coax out the player that they thought Cleary could be. It didn’t work here because they couldn’t shelter him and he hadn’t matured enough. Now in Detroit it’s like they gave him some magic talent pills and he’s the player we always thought he could be. Playing with, and behind, good players helps the development. Detroit has been extraordinarily fortunate in that regard for over a decade now.

      • RexLibris

        That’s sort of my point actually, though I didn’t do anything to clarify it inmy post. certainly playing with Lidstrom is a big part, but you poin to Cleary and there’s Bertuzzi and others as well.

        My point then is what are they doing with their systems and culture that brings this out in players, while in Calgary it seems we do the opposite more often than not? It’s like we’re a mirror opposite. With Detroit it’s more than merely just having a few superstars make everyone else look good.