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On the Wideman appeal

From the New York Post's Larry Brooks:

What did the Flames know and when did they know it?

That will become the critical issue in the aftermath of the Dennis Wideman incident that could become the NHL’s Concussiongate once all appeals are exhausted and the final verdict is handed down on the Calgary defenseman, currently serving a 20-game suspension under Rule 40.2 for having violently crosschecked (my words) linesman Don Henderson on Jan. 27.

The rule that stipulates “intent to injure” was applied even though the league acknowledged Wideman had suffered a brain injury as the result of taking a hard check into the glass/dasher seconds before running into — or running — Henderson.

The later diagnosed concussion will figure prominently in the NHLPA’s appeal to league commissioner Gary Bettman. While it is unfathomable that the commissioner will reduce the sentence and incur the wrath of the officials working the ice — Yellow Sunday, anyone? — an all but inevitable ensuing appeal to an independent arbitrator could well yield a different result.

Because the sub-question to the one posed above is, can a player in the immediate aftermath of suffering a brain injury form the intent to do anything, much less injure an official? Believe me, that’s posed as a question; I am not playing the role of a physician in this space.


Filed in: | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: calgary+flames, dennis+wideman, gary+bettman


Alan's avatar

I’m sorry, but how did the league miss the way Wideman was meandering on the ice after that heavy check? He was clearly disoriented, and punishing a guy who pretty clearly sustained a hrad injury is a low blow for the league.

Posted by Alan from Atlanta on 02/07/16 at 03:30 AM ET


The amazing thing is that in the suspension video they acknowledge the hit and that he was diagnosed with a concussion, but still hold him 100% responsible for it.

It’s absolutely mind-boggling.

Posted by Garth on 02/07/16 at 11:02 AM ET

Hootinani's avatar

What’s mind boggling is how Calgary has dodged any and all sanctions for letting Wideman not only finish the game, but not even miss a shift.

They claim Wideman refused medical treatment, but the entire point of the concussion protocol is to take it out of the players hands, especially since they might not be thinking clearly.

Posted by Hootinani on 02/07/16 at 11:27 AM ET

MOWingsfan19's avatar

^^ What he said.

Posted by MOWingsfan19 from I really like our team on 02/07/16 at 12:46 PM ET


The league was put in a hard palcd. Despite knowing that Wideman had suffered a concussion, the league’s refs were demanding big discipline or threatening repercussions. The league likely made a calculated move knowing the suspension could get overturned down the road while it kept its refs fairly happy.

The last thing the league needs is ref intentionally making bad calls. That happens enough without intent.

Posted by evileye on 02/08/16 at 03:27 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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