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On the Duncan Keith Stick Swinging Incident

from David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune,

Only duty or instinct could compel anyone to defend Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith now, but stop if you're tempted.

Keith doesn't deserve your rationalizations, Hawks fans. He deserves your aggravation.

For such a smart player, Keith did a dumb thing Tuesday night against the Wild when he slashed Charlie Coyle in the face with his stick. Keith recklessly committed a vicious act that made the Stanley Cup a little harder to defend. He made a conscious decision to retaliate against Coyle, the Wild forward who took him to the ground with a trip that constituted interference. Landing hard on his back, Keith lay there for a split second and — in that momentary lapse — decided to swing his stick at Coyle in a blatant attempt to injure the Wild player. The blood dripping down Coyle's crooked nose confirmed Keith's attempt was successful. Had an opponent done something similar to a Hawks player, he would have received the Raffi Torres pariah treatment from the fan base.

That's no way for a Hall of Fame player to respect the game or an opponent. That's crossing the line between going hard and playing dirty. That's unacceptable, especially for a Norris Trophy winner who should have realized the potential repercussions by the league with the playoffs looming.

continued

from Mike Imrem of the Chicago Daily-Herald,

There is no defense for Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith's behavior at Minnesota on Tuesday night.

Keith -- on his way to the hockey Hall of Fame -- will make a stop on the NHL's suspension list for whacking his stick into the face of Wild forward Charlie Coyle.

If I were the league's Duke of Discipline, the punishment would span the rest of the regular season and all of the postseason.

continued

from Mark Lazerus of the Chicago Sun-Times,

And imagine if Keith’s absence causes the Hawks to stumble into fourth place; Nashville is just four points back. Could the Hawks, in their current state, beat the Los Angeles Kings four times in seven games?

The Hawks are banged up. They’re worn down. They’re unbalanced up front and thin on the back end. And now Keith’s status is up in the air. Does that mean the Hawks can’t will themselves to another deep playoff run? Of course, not. The Blues and Stars have proven nothing in the postseason. The Hawks have proven everything.

But this is the worst-case scenario, limping into the postseason and leaning on a bunch of rookies and newcomers. No team in the league is as experienced and resilient as the Hawks are. No team is even close. But this right here, these next few weeks, might be their toughest test yet.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, Chicago Blackhawks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: duncan+keith

Comments

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If I were the league’s Duke of Discipline, the punishment would span the rest of the regular season and all of the postseason.

I feel like I must be missing some different video that everyone else is watching.  I see it as a penalty.  I see it as possibly a suspension, but as in 1 game suspension.  Entire season and playoffs???  Are you serious?

Posted by gretzky_to_lemieux on 03/31/16 at 07:50 AM ET

Dakkster's avatar

He’s swinging his stick hard at someone’s face. How is that not extremely serious? Remember Marty McSorley? Jesus, get your head on straight.

Posted by Dakkster from Southern Sweden on 03/31/16 at 07:54 AM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

Duncan Keith is in the hall of fame already?

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 03/31/16 at 08:15 AM ET

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I agree with G-to-L. I’m not a Hawks fan. I don’t condone stick infractions, and still believe every player should remain in control of their hardware, but watch the video and notice the angle of the stick to his arm. If he was intentionally trying to chop Coyle, the stick and arm, Keith would be strong on the stick and the stick would be a natural extension of his arm, straight out from the arm when it contacts Coyle’s face. Instead, the stick is almost perpendicular to his arm, which implies that it was just along for the ride. Keith was in motion, flipping over to (with his stick hand having to travel across his body) to do so. As such, with stick in hand, the stick has to follow and swung up in a very unfortunate manner for Coyle’s face. It happens all the time when a player tries to tap the puck around a defender on the rush and the offensive player tries to jump around them, swinging the stick over their head to do so.

Should Keith have been in better control of his stick? Yes. Is he responsible for not doing so, and should face penalties and possible disciplinary action? Yes. Did he have intent to hack off Coyle’s nose? I don’t believe so. As such, I think the number of games being called for in a suspension is too many.

Posted by penguinsfan on 03/31/16 at 08:45 AM ET

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I feel like I must be missing some different video that everyone else is watching.

Are you watching the one where he purposefully swings his stick and hits the Minnesota player right in the f*cking face?

Because if you are then the video isn’t the problem.

Posted by Garth on 03/31/16 at 08:46 AM ET

nEgativezEro's avatar

Are you watching the one where he purposefully swings his stick and hits the Minnesota player right in the f*cking face?

Because if you are then the video isn’t the problem.

Posted by Garth on 03/31/16 at 09:46 AM ET

Yeah, I don’t know if he was purposefully trying to hit him in the face, but that stick swing was 100% intentional.

I’m sure he gets at least the 5 games necessitated by the in-person hearing, but I don’t see him getting any games for the playoffs. Probably deserves 10 total, but I don’t see the league going that far.

Posted by nEgativezEro on 03/31/16 at 09:10 AM ET

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I’m sure he gets at least the 5 games necessitated by the in-person hearing, but I don’t see him getting any games for the playoffs.

Yeah, I wouldn’t be surprised if that was the case.  Maybe one token playoff game.

Posted by Garth on 03/31/16 at 09:16 AM ET

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Should be at least through the 1st round of the playoffs. If he missed the whole playoffs it wouldn’t bother me at all.

It’s not even the first time he’s hit a guy in the face: https://youtu.be/49YHRW0ve0k?t=30s

This was obviously intentional (as was the one I linked above). I don’t get how any of the people above can think this isn’t a huge deal, warranting a serious suspension. A couple inches to the side and he could’ve taken out a guy’s eye and ended his career.

There’s no place in the sport for shit like this, and he’s done it multiple times. Throw the book at him.

Posted by Stza on 03/31/16 at 09:16 AM ET

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Im going with 7 games. The top five answers are on the board, let’s see 7games. Survey SAYS…..

Posted by SlimChance on 03/31/16 at 09:26 AM ET

Mistercristo's avatar

When are suspensions going to start being determined by results instead of something as nebulous as “intent”?

Oh, that’s right: never.

Posted by Mistercristo from Cameron Frye's garage, circa 1987 on 03/31/16 at 10:32 AM ET

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Oh, that’s right: never.

Nor should they.  “Results” can be just as nebulous as “intent”

Posted by Garth on 03/31/16 at 10:56 AM ET

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I don’t think “results” are even necessarily a good metric - doing something stupid stupid/making a dangerous play should be penalized, regardless of whether the victim gets lucky and isn’t injured significantly.

Posted by Stza on 03/31/16 at 11:03 AM ET

Royal Grand Exalted PooBah's avatar

Friend that is a Hawks fan predicted 5 to 6. I think it should be more like 10 since I thought it was mentioned a previous stick swinging prior event.

Posted by Royal Grand Exalted PooBah from the basement of the Alamo on 03/31/16 at 12:59 PM ET

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I think it should be more like 10 since I thought it was mentioned a previous stick swinging prior event.

It should be, but that incident was nearly 3 years ago, so in the eyes of the NHL he’s not a repeat offender.

Posted by Garth on 03/31/16 at 03:32 PM ET

bigfrog's avatar

Should be at least through the 1st round of the playoffs. If he missed the whole playoffs it wouldn’t bother me at all.

It should be the rest of the season, but since he is a Slackhawk it won’t be enforced. cool hmm

Posted by bigfrog on 03/31/16 at 05:40 PM ET

alwaysaurie's avatar

“It’s not even the first time he’s hit a guy in the face… This was obviously intentional (as was the one I linked above).” —Stza.

Thanks for the link.

Since this one was worse than the one against Carter, I think we can expect this suspension to extend into the playoffs. 10gms, 15gms, 25gms - that’s the sort of penalty I expect.

Posted by alwaysaurie on 04/01/16 at 12:23 PM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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