1) Many were a bit surprised with the NHL's decision today to NOT suspend Islander forward Jason Blake for a spearing incident that occurred in the waning moments of last night's Islander-Penguin game in the Igloo. Replays clearly showed it was an intentional action on the part of the diminutive Islander forward on the teen super star
2) Why then was Blake cut slack when it seems the league would have gone out of its way to send a message to protect its most marketable product, Sidney Crosby? The answer actually isn't too complicated. The NHL front office, specifically Mr.'s Walkum/Campbell and the officials are none too pleased with the way Crosby continues to embellish infractions against him.
3) This trend/perception would explain why on a play that was clearly a 5 minute spear, Blake not only didn't get so much as a 2 minute minor, BUT Crosby got an unsportsman like conduct call. Ostensibly for 'diving'.
4) It appears a case of 'Boy crying Wolf' once too often. If Sid had a clean record with regard to embellishments/diving, you can be certain he would have been given the benefit of the doubt with regard to the Blake stick foul. Instead Blake was given that benefit, and got away with one. The league could have decided to give Blake a suspension after the fact today but may be sending Mr. Crosby and other divers a message: Stop it! Hopefully the message is received and we start to see less of this now common tactic to draw fouls.
9 years ago