October 04, 2010
If the NHL's creaky Wheel of Justice was going to get a good preseason spin, Michael Cammalleri's(notes) slash on the leg of New York Islanders rookie Nino Niederreiter(notes) provided a fascinating case.
To reset the incident, which has cost Cammalleri a single regular-season game (the Montreal Canadiens' opener at the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday): In a game played Saturday in Quebec City, Niederreiter nailed Cammalleri with a questionable hit, which led to some jostling, a jab with Cammalleri's stick and then a deliberate slash to the leg.
Cammalleri was assessed a five-minute major for slashing and given a game misconduct for this, at 16:52 of the second period.
Was one-game enough or too much?
Stu Hackel of Habs Inside/Out made the case that the initial hit from El Nino "was shoulder to shoulder from behind. A case can also be made that the head was targeted, even though it wasn't the principal point of contact."
For a two-handed chop that was penalized within the game to get a single game suspension may imply two things: First, that the instigation was taken into account, as was Cammalleri's relatively clean record; and that Niederreiter wasn't tremendously hurt, although he's due for another medical evaluation today, per Chris Botta.
With that, what say you?
Pass or Fail: Michael Cammalleri's 1-regular-season-game suspension for slashing Nino Niederreiter?