Friday, October 8, 2010

What To Do With Shinnimin?

Last year a good portion of the junior hockey season was dominated by negative headlines. From Mike Liambis to Patrice Cormier the OHL and QMJHL kicked both out by January 25th. The CHL season is just 7 games in and already the WHL is faced with a tough decision.

Wednesday night an ugly hit in the WHL left one player injured and one facing a lengthy suspension. A couple videos coming up...

My first reaction to this was WOW...that is a terrible hit. Scott Nichols is at the goal line when Brendan Shinnimin hits him hard from behind into the end boards. Did Nichols think Shinniman was going to be able to make a play on the sharp angled shot to the net? That's one argument that might be made. Regardless it's an unacceptable play by Shinniman and he deserves to be punished.

Some have compared this to the Mike Liambas hit on Ben Fanelli hit from last year. The Erie Otters forward hammered the young defenceman behind the net. It was a thunderous hit to be sure, but at least Fanelli had the puck at one time in the play. We at TPS didn't think it was a dirty hit, and looks very clean compared to the hit above.

This is closer to the Patrice Cormier on Mikael Tam hit from last year in the QMJHL.

TPS contacted various sources across the CHL. Some media members, some in hockey management of various leagues and received everything from, 3, 5, 8, 10, and a few 15's.

Shinniman doesn't have the reputation as a dirty player but you have to have more respect then that. Some have used the word "vicious" and "intent to injure" in conversations I've had. The point was also raised that Shinniman at the time of the hit was tied for the league lead in scoring with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. Will that play into the suspension because he's viewed as a star player?

It better not. Shinninam was given 2 game for boarding with more to come. I think if the WHl is perceived to be letting a player off easy they're asking for trouble, and if I was Richard Doekrsen it wouldn't be less then 20 games.

What would you do?


Guy Flaming said...

For me that play is deserving of 15-20 games. I would be really disappointed with less and if he got more I would be surprised, but not outraged.

Shinniman isn't a habitually dirty player from what I can gather but that's a hit that needs to be eliminated from the game and only a big reaction from the WHL will be an appropriate response.

I feel for GM Bob Tory though because it would be tough to lose what is arguably your best player for an extended period of time.

That said, I don't think you the league can afford to have different sets of rules for their marquee players and the rest of the guys on the rosters.

Ignore the names on the jerseys, judge the play for the play itself.

That's a brutally dangerous hit and should be treated as such regardless of who gave or received it.

Brock Otten said...

While it was a brutally dangerous hit, here's why I'd be surprised if it was over the 10-15 game mark...

1) The fact that Shinniman isn't a known pugilist or a guy who's got a reputation around the league for this sort of thing. Not to mention he's one of the leading scorers in the league.

2) Nicholls wasn't hurt THAT badly. We all know from the history of these actions in the CHL, that the extent of the injury definitely plays into the suspension length. Nicholls has a concussion and a bruised back. Serious, but I've read he could be back in a week.

If you compare it to the Mike Liambas incident, Ben Fanelli suffered a fractured skull and still hasn't been cleared for contact nearly a year later. He was also a vulnerable 16 year old rookie the league was clearly trying to protect. While Nicholls is a veteran in the WHL.

You've also got to factor in Liambas' reputation as someone on the ice there to mash faces rather than score goals.

If I think back to Zac Rinaldo's hit on Andrew Yogan (not quite as serious but Yogan missed significant time with a concussion), he got 8 games for his actions.

It'll be interesting to see the ruling.

Traktor said...

That is the dirtiest hit I have seen in any league in a long, long time.

Worthy of a 40 game suspension.

Anything under 25 games and the league looks like a joke.