The ol’ nine-minute power play
That’s right. Last night in Calgary, the Capitals had a NINE-MINUTE POWER PLAY. Now, one might ask, “How do you get a nine-minute power play?”
Tyler Sloan gets a nice open-ice hit and then Rene Bourque pounces on him. Bourque was given 4 penalties. A five-minute major for fighting, a two-minute minor for instigating, a two-minute minor for unsportsmanlike conduct, and a 10 minute misconduct. Keep in mind that it was just a misconduct, not a game misconduct.
On Friday against the Maple Leafs, Marc Staal laid a nasty (but clean) hit on Matt Stajan. Almost instantly, Jamal Mayers went after Staal and proceeded to wrestle him to the ground.
Those two plays were very similar, yet they had very different outcomes. As I said before, the Capitals ended up getting a nine-minute power play (which they failed to score on) but in the Rangers’ case, both Staal and Mayers were given five-minute majors for fighting.
But Eric, Staal fought back while Sloan didn’t!
That’s not true. If you go watch the first video again, you can see that Sloan throws his gloves off as Bourque comes after him. Sloan just didn’t get any punches in and fell down almost instantly. Staal, on the other hand, stayed up a few for a few seconds.
So why do the refs deal with these two similar plays so differently? Is the league trying to crack down on this sort of thing?
Also, why is it that Paul Mara gets a game misconduct for sticking up for himself after he avoided what would have been a very dirty hit from the guy that broke his face last season, but Rene Bourque only gets a misconduct (which allows him to return) even after being given an instigator AND an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty?
About the author: Eric is a lifelong Rangers fan and is currently studying Computer Engineering at Hofstra University. You can follow him on Twitter: @5holeEric