Saturday, March 15, 2008

Pronger’s two step may force him to sit out the dance

The pressure is on NHL enforcement guardian Colin Campbell now, with word that Chris Pronger has been summoned to explain his recent actions in Wednesday night’s game with the Vancouver Canucks.

Originally, Pronger had been told on Thursday that he was in the clear on the incident, however as they say under further review....

With the NHL having set the standard of punishment for dangerous use of a skate with Chris Simon earlier this year, when he was suspended for thirty games it will be interesting to see what Colin Campbell comes up with after his secondary review. With that as the new benchmark, the math count has already begun as to how many games Pronger will be forced to miss, for what many view as his attempted stomp of Ryan Kesler.

The radio and television talk shows are already dividing into two camps, with some suggesting that Pronger was merely trying to dis-entangle himself from Kesler, while others point to his past nasty works and suggest that there was nothing but malice in that shuffling of his feet.

On Friday, the debate over the incident seemed to be centered on the topic of the double standard. A number of contributors weighed in and using Simon’s punishment of twenty games as their example, suggested that Pronger gets special status because of his star status in the league.

It’s a thought that has crossed the mind of the oft suspended Chris Simon, who was wondering aloud today why he was targeted at thirty games for his attempt to injure, while Pronger wasn’t even under review until today, two days after the event took place.

Simon was referring to the fact that the NHL had previously not been provided with a clear picture of the event and was hesitant to make a judgment based on what video they had. That apparently changed when a clearer version of the incident was made available which focused on the play behind the net and Pronger’s foot work.

The deciding factor in all of this may be whether Kesler had deliberately tried to tie up Pronger by closing his legs scissor like and whether Pronger is perceived as having stumbled and whether his stomp was by design or the result of Kesler’s leg wrap.

At least we suspect that will be the defence launched by the loquacious Brian Burke whenever he and Pronger get together with Colin Campbell.

For the NHL once again the issue and problem of consistency is raising its head, a procedure that the NHL seems to be having problems with it seems.

National Post--NHL taking another look at Pronger stomping incident
Globe and Mail Blog--Maki: Pronger stomp gets re-reviewed
Vancouver Sun--Pronger stomp on Kesler gets second look
Los Angeles Times--Ducks' Pronger still could be suspended
CBC Sports HNIC--Pronger could be punished for skate incident

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