Philadelphia Flyers' forward Harry Zolnierczyk has become the latest to feel the wrath of Shan, earning a four-game ban for his hit on Mike Lundin of the Ottawa Senators. As it turns out, the Department of Player Safety would still prefer that players not leap into other player's heads.
For this offense, Zolnierczyk has been suspended four games for charging. Here's Brendan Shanahan with the explanation:
As usual, Shanahan breaks down the incident, tracking Zolnierczyk as he leaves the bench to begin his shift, keys in on Lundin, and lines the Senators' defenceman up for a hard, legal check.
Seriously, the emphasis Shanahan puts on however here is hilarious. It's the angriest however I've heard in years. You hear someone say however like that and you know you're in huge trouble.
"Instead of delivering a hard, legal check," Shanahan explains, "[Zolnierczyk] launches prior to the check, making significant contact to Lundin's head. This is charging."
The DOPS video does a great job of showing Zolnierczyk in the air prior to contact, proving that the leap made the hit deserving of consequence, rather than being a consequence of the hit.
Shanahan adds that Lundin had every expectation of being checked, just as any player has anywhere on the ice. "But what no player should expect is that an opponent will launch upward, off the ice, and into his head."
No kidding. Zolnierczyk will have four games to think about how better to keep his checks within his opponents' expectations. He's also $12,972.96 lighter after the ban.
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