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A blog by a long time New York Islanders fan who stays true to the fellas wearing orange, white and blue…but thinks the Islanders organization has some shaping up to do.

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Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Trouble With Hits Is...

Let's get this straight: As fans, we are all biased. If we see a hit where someone gets hurt, we call for the opponent's head. If one of our players throws what could be construed as a "cheap shot," we go out of our way to prove that that isn't the case. If we're Islanders fans, in many cases we resort to the tried-and-true line, "Colin Campbell just doesn't like us."

In no way am I saying I disagree with that assessment. I've seen plenty of instances in the past four years as an Islander fan where it looked an awful lot as though he was being just a little harsh. So why would we not take that stance once more, after the Toronto Maple Leafs game?

Brendan Witt's hit on Niklas Hagman was unintentional in my eyes. I don't think Witt, despite his reputation as a hitter, purposely goes around looking for people to hurt. He even went over to see if Hagman was okay after it happened. And as for the people who want to argue about Hagman's past history with concussions... well, I doubt players actually think at that moment, "Oh, this guy has had x amount of concussions before, let me see if I can give him another one." Not to mention the fact that, from what I saw, Hagman stopped short on the ice as Witt attempted to finish the check.

Then again, I am biased, seeing as I've been a Witt fan since he came to the Island. The other extreme- people calling for 15-20 games, I kid you not- just makes me laugh. I wonder what they thought of all of the hits that went unpunished- hits just as cheap, just as detrimental to the game. But we all see the game differently, and we all make our own opinions, which is why I can't understand all of the name-calling going on on YouTube and elsewhere when two sides get into disagreement.

I suppose, though, it's all part of the fans' passion for the game.

You can see the hit for yourself here:



Paul Squire said...

Doesn't surprise me.
Name-calling on YouTube is nothing new. :)

I think what bothers me the most about this is not that Witt got 5 games. I will go out there and say that 5 games is fair enough if the league wants to eliminate these hits. But that Mottau got 2, and Pronger gets a slap on the wrist and Crosby get by scott-free for punching a guy in the privates TWICE...

If the league really wants to crack down on hits, judge them evenly. Make 5 games the MINIMUM, not just the number of games you get if your jersey has Long island on it.

AngieOnTheNYIslesScene said...

I actually agree with that... whether it be 5 games, 2, whatever... just make it an even playing field. Maybe if that were the case I wouldn't be so outraged that Witt got so many games because it would be the standard, not the "extreme."