November 03, 2011
Linesmen deserve hazard pay. We've always felt this way, given how often they put themselves in harm's way during hockey fights.
We feel even more strongly about it after Thursday night's game between the Minnesota Wild and the Vancouver Canucks, in which linesman Darren Gibbs was punched in the face twice accidentally by Cal Clutterbuck(notes) as he wrestled with Maxim Lapierre(notes):
Here's the Minnesota feed:
O-U-C-H. Slow-motion really brought that one home. Total accident, total self-defense ... and thankfully, a linesman who can totally take a punch.
[ Related: Concussion worries loom large in NHL ]
(Incidentally, the official scorer in Minnesota counted 10 hits for Clutterbuck there. And if you get that, you watch too much hockey. )
Lapierre and Clutterbuck were given misconducts on the play; so was defenseman Dan Hamhuis(notes) for grabbing Clutterbuck from the Canucks' bench. The Wild won the game, 5-1, scoring all five goals after Hamhuis gave Vancouver a 1-0 lead in the first.
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