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  • Did Brooks Orpik deserve three-game suspension for Maatta hit?

    Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy19 hrs ago

    So did the NHL just hurt or help the Washington Capitals?

    Defenseman Brooks Orpik has been suspended three playoff games for his head-shot on Olli Maatta of the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference semifinal series. The incident occurred at 4:13 of the first period. Orpik was assessed a minor penalty for interference 

    Capitals coach Barry Trotz said that Orpik thought the puck was coming back to Maatta after a shot and a rebound. “There’s a real size difference, and Maata leaned into it a little bit,” he said after Game 2.

    The NHL saw it differently

    It was easy to see that Orpik was going to be suspended. It violates two basic tenets of Department of Player Safety dogma: It’s a hit that shouldn’t have been delivered, and it was a hit that caused significant contact with an opponent’s head, injuring him.

    “This hit is forceful, unacceptably high and excessively late,” said the ruling.

    What’s surprising is that Orpik was given three games for it, considering he hasn’t been suspended since the 2005-06 season. (Although we don’t know how many warnings he’s received.) Using the unofficial playoff game multiplier, that’s a six-gamer in the regular season.

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