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Niklas Kronwall hits Charlie Coyle, Eddie Olczyk goes apoplectic

If we are to believe NBC Sports' Eddie Olczyk, Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall's dirty hit to the head of Charlie Coyle--and it was ill-timed--was a hideous and egregious offense for which no one should stand. Kronwall received a double-minor for high-sticking and the Wild scored on their power play.


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bezukov's avatar

I’ve always disliked Olczyk, but until this season I never thought of him as unfair.  But he has really been grinding an axe against the Wings this season.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 03/20/13 at 09:14 PM ET

Vladimir16's avatar

Fuch NBC Sports! Watched the pregame at the pub and their coverage is one step below WWE. It’s embarassing. My favorite part had to be when they were hyping the “rivalry” between the two teams. There hasn’t been a rivalry between these two since Kocur beat the piss outa Link Gaetz. I couldn’t wait to get home and stream this debacle without volume

Posted by Vladimir16 from Grand River Valley on 03/20/13 at 09:22 PM ET

w2j2's avatar

That was a hit to the head, and Kronwall got what he deserved.
cool mad

Posted by w2j2 on 03/20/13 at 09:31 PM ET


Kronwall’s history speaks for itself!

Posted by timbits on 03/20/13 at 09:46 PM ET

Down River Dan's avatar

Kronwall’s history speaks for itself!

Yes it does. Same as Scott Stevens, and Rob Blake. Of Course, Nick is a Swede, and we know how dirty they are?

Nick’s stick may have been, to quote mr. Olczyk “up”, but that was irrelevant to the hit.

Once those two idiot’s ( olczyk,mcguire) start blathering on about anything I tune them out.

Posted by Down River Dan on 03/20/13 at 10:36 PM ET

Figaro's avatar

Wasn’t that 4 minutes for Not-so-subtle Interference?

Posted by Figaro from Los Alamos, NM on 03/21/13 at 12:39 AM ET


Of Course, Nick is a Swede, and we know how dirty they are?

Ulf Samuelsson

Posted by AdamBruinsFan on 03/21/13 at 12:46 AM ET

Luongo-is-my-hero's avatar

it was a hit to the head, I don’t know why you guys are trying to justify it.  And to say that hits like the ones Stevens landed back then are ok now is a totally different story.  Stevens was a head hunter and made it part of his game, it was a different era, for some strange reason, it was allowed back then.  THe game has changed.  EVERYONE knows what would happen to Stevens of he played in this era and continued to play recklessly like that.  HE would be on permanent suspension with a record worse than matt cookes.

Posted by Luongo-is-my-hero on 03/21/13 at 01:56 AM ET

Hockeytown Wax's avatar

bitch bitch piss moan ... i’m sick of this shit.

you have your head down and don’t see what ahead of you then you deserve to get hit like that.

just like the new rule in the NFL for this coming season ... if you call that a penalty then you might as well take out all hitting & fighting and call it flag hockey.

the “pussification” of hockey continues .......

Posted by Hockeytown Wax from West Bloomfield, Mi. on 03/21/13 at 01:57 AM ET

Bradley97's avatar

Greg Wyshynski commented on the hit here:


I agree with his assessment.

Posted by Bradley97 on 03/21/13 at 03:21 AM ET

redxblack's avatar

There is an onus on players to have their heads up. Had Coyle had his head up, this would have been shoulder to shoulder. However, his head was down and this was a head shot. It clearly wasn’t a stick infraction, but it was a head shot.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 03/21/13 at 08:07 AM ET

Nathan's avatar

I think Wyshynski’s take is the best.

Definitely not a high stick, but the game happens fast, hard to hate on the refs too bad.

This is one of those hits that I think is very tough to judge under the current wording and general interpretation of the head hit rules.

Kronwall did NOT jump, he didn’t come in from the blind side, he didn’t get his elbow up, and the hit was on the puck carrier. To add to Kronwall’s case, he turned and used his hip/ass/back for the hit instead of going in with his side where an elbow and shoulder would be more dangerous. You can even see in the slow motion replays that he’s very clearly making a conscious effort to keep his elbow tucked in so as to keep the hit clean.

So, under the current rules, I find it hard to believe he deserves any supplemental discipline, not even a fine.

But the question becomes, should these hits be illegal? He did hit him in the head with his shoulder. When it isn’t from the blind side, do we want to accept that the onus is then on the puck carrier to keep his head up, and so long as the hitter’s elbows don’t come up or he doesn’t jump into the hit, contact with the head like this is incidental? Or do we want to crack down and try to eliminate all hits to the head?

It is a very hard question to answer. Obviously, anything we can do to eliminate head injuries is great on the surface. But there is also inherent risk to playing a contact sport, and trying to take away these hard hits would eliminate a lot of what is exciting about the contact aspect of the professional game.

If you’re going to put the onus on the hitter for hits that are face-to-face like this, to notice if the puck carrier has his head down, you are going to eliminate almost all open ice hits or hits like this along the half wall, because trying to make those hits will almost never be worse the risk… too hard to judge in a split second if that player has seen you or not.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 03/21/13 at 08:33 AM ET

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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.