November 12, 2011
Rome was given five minutes for elbowing and a 10-minute game misconduct. Smith-Pelly went to the locker room, but returned a short while later.
The hit did something for the Ducks as they would score three times in the following 10 minutes as part of a four-goal second period.
First question: How is that an elbowing call and not a charge?
In real time, it's one of those hits that's deceptive because it looks like an elbow because Rome follows through with it; but the initial contact was made with his shoulder.
We all remember Rome being suspended for the final four games of the Stanley Cup Final for his hit on Nathan Horton(notes) of the Boston Bruins, so he's in "repeat offender" territory. But a suspendable offense?
You can debate whether or not it was late, but Rome gets his shoulder on Smith-Pelly's upper-body. The head was not the principle point of contact on the hit, something that's been pretty vital in the handing out of suspensions for head hits.
If we want to talk about sure suspensions, check out this stick-swinging incident in the OHL tonight via Buzzing the Net.
UPDATE: Via Helene Elliott of the LA Times: "No fine or suspension for Canucks' Rome for hit on Ducks' Smith-Pelley. League says punishment fit crime and head not targeted."