Le Petite Byron
This week the Montreal Canadian’s lost a key part of their hockey club due to” the code.”
A few weeks back the NHL suspended Paul Byron three games for a hit to the head on Panthers defenceman Mackenzie Weegar. By NHL standards it was an adequate amount of games. However, they had to have known that the incident was far from over. The NHL and the NHLPA just stood by and watched another player receive a traumatic head hit. This sort of medieval justice continues to haunt a game that could be so good. These are highly paid assets that owners are letting get damaged in selfless stupid acts. There is no telling how long Byron will be out or what the long term effects will be. The Canadian’s even had the audacity to list his injury as upper body. He has a concussion. Call it for what it really is.
The Prime Minister of Saturday Night has said “no one gets hurt in a fight.” Well, Don Cherry if Byron did not get hurt in the fight, then why was he not playing Thursday against Columbus? I don’t think Claude Julien made him a healthy scratch.
Paul Byron gave up at 40 pounds and 6 inches to Weegar, so it was a mismatch from the start. I give Byron credit for accepting the challenge, but he would like to rethink that decision now while his head is pounding. Why anyone didn’t from the Canadian’s have a conversation during the warmup with Florida and tell him not to do it? Why didn’t the NHL make a phone call? What about the officials, they had to know this was coming too. They are usually pretty at identifying mismatches. If the NHL and the NHLPA are really concerned about headshots then eliminate fighting. If you do fight you get five, ten, and a game and a two game suspension. If you are deemed the instigator it is five games. If you fight a second time the suspension doubles. Problem solved!
By the way Byron’s suspension cost him $36,600 in after tax dollars. I guess that was not enough.
Those of you who are concerned about the “Rat Factor” the solution is simple. Use the freaking rule book. It is that simple. However, the knuckle draggers at the NHL just don’t understand because they choose not to.
It is going to take a serious incident for this to change and by that I mean a death or a life changing event for caused by the fight. Baseball is not far behind either when Pitchers throw at batters. That is a story for another day.
One last thought. Is it not the mandate of the NHLPA to protect its members?
I will remain optimistic that the NHL and the NHLPA will have an enlightened moment.
Till next time.