A blog focusing on the New York Rangers and all things hockey (also Yankees and Giants) with a New York attitude from a fan of 40 years whose greatest highlight came when Mark Messier lifting the Stanley Cup on June 14, 1994
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The NHL handed out three more suspensions Tuesday night, bringing the total to nine with the playoffs just a week old.
The most severe was a four-game ban assessed to Pittsburgh forward Arron Asham, who was given a match penalty for attempting to injure
Philadelphia forward Brayden Schenn with a cross-check in the first period of Sunday's 8-4 loss to the Flyers.
Teammate James Neal was given a one-game suspension for charging Flyers forward Claude Giroux in the third period on Sunday. Neal received a minor penalty and also was ejected.
Pittsburgh actually will be without three regulars on Wednesday when it tries to avoid a stunning four-game sweep. Earlier, Craig Adams earned an automatic one-game suspension for an instigator penalty following a fight late in game three with Scott Hartnell.
Also on Tuesday night, Washington's Nicklas Backstrom was suspended one game after receiving a match penalty in game three of the Capitals' series against the Bruins.
Backstrom was facing an automatic suspension after he cross-checked Bruins forward Rich Peverley following the final buzzer in Boston's 4-3 victory Monday night.
The list of suspensions likely will grow after a hit by Phoenix's Raffi Torres knocked Chicago's Marian Hossa out of Tuesday's game in the first period.
The Blackhawks' leading scorer with 77 points, Hossa was taken off the ice on a stretcher but released from the hospital Tuesday night, although no timetable has been determined for his return.
We said it before, but the NHL has lost total control. The suspensions are marring the playoffs and we can't rememeber when players had less respect for each other.
A friend made a good point. With its desire to speed up the game after the lockout, which was a noble intent, the NHL essentially has, with a few exception, removed the enforcers, who would serve as policemen on the ice.
Back in the day, no one messed with Wayne Gretzky because they would have to deal with David Semenko.
My friend says the NHL should ban all hits to the head. Any hit to the head is an automatic one-game suspension. Sounds good to us, but we won't hold our breath waiting for that to happen.