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The Downie rule?

Tampa Bay Lightning forward Steve Downie suffered what is probably a concussion via a hit from Boston Bruins forward Nathan Horton on Saturday, but Downie was assessed a penalty for “unsportsmanlike conduct” do to his…reputation for embellishing calls:

On the play, which came with 2:35 left, Downie was checked into the boards behind the Bruins net by Horton, who was initially called for boarding (later changed to roughing). Downie was slow to get to the bench afterward and headed straight for the locker room.

Lightning LW Simon Gagne said he was surprised to see Downie called for diving but added Downie’s reputation for getting into conflicts could have played a role.

“He’s Steve Downie, so maybe it’d be a little different if it’s me or somebody else,” Gagne said. “It’s part of his game. We don’t want him to change it.”

Boucher said he had never seen a call like that but praised the referees for how they’ve done in Tampa.

“If it’s a mistake and the (referees) make only one during the entire game, they’re like coaches and players if they limit their mistakes,” Boucher said. “The referees have been great the past two games. They let the players play. It’s not a cheap series.”

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MoreShoot's avatar

I dont suppose Homer should have an ounce of sympathy.

Posted by MoreShoot on 05/22/11 at 07:37 PM ET

creasemonkey's avatar

Both in real time and in replays, it looked like Downie’s skate turned awkwardly and he lost Whatever balance he had, hitting the boards weird. Reputation or not, he should not have gotten a penalty on it.

Then again, this is NHL officiating we are talking about.

Posted by creasemonkey from sweet home san diego on 05/22/11 at 10:05 PM ET

MsRedWingFan's avatar

the NHL is becoming a joke ... It’s sad

and it looks like its Vancouver’s time to get the cup handed to them free of charge by Bettman ... numerous 5 on 3 PP’s in last nights game

Posted by MsRedWingFan from West Michgian on 05/23/11 at 02:16 PM ET

MoreShoot's avatar

numerous 5 on 3 PP’s in last nights game

it was 4 penalties in 3 minutes, or so, but one was a high stick, one was delay of game, and one was too many men.  I don’t know how a ref can ignore those.  Besides, SJ had the first 5 PP.  No bitchin’ allowed when you get 5 in a row.

Posted by MoreShoot on 05/23/11 at 02:25 PM ET


The really disturbing part about the play is Horton berating him after the play.  From my lofty perch, Horton’s actions are similar (not exact) to what Gillies did with Tangradi.  Entirely uncalled for and THAT was your “unsportsmanlike”.  Fact is that that Horton has now accummulated two suspendable offences, yet nothing will happen. 

So, reputation is reality in the NHL.

Tis a shame.  I love Downie’s game.  Yes, he crosses the line.  But how many guys put up points and PIMs like this kid?  Tocchet, Hunter, etc. were great players - loved by their teammates.  I suspect that every Bolts would love to include Downie in their “foxhole.”

Posted by Unicorn Force from DC (but like everyone here, I'm not a local) on 05/23/11 at 09:56 PM 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.