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Old 02-02-2013, 02:36 PM   #151
OnTheWarpath58 OnTheWarpath58 is offline
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From the Post-Dispatch:

Quote:
For what it's worth – which certainly isn't two points - the match penalty assessed to Blues forward David Backes in Friday's frustrating 5-3 loss at Detroit has been rescinded by the NHL.

That's right, it never happened.

Backes was given a match penalty, which carries suspension ramifications, for an “illegal hit to the head” of Detroit's Kent Huskins midway through the third period of a 3-3 battle. The Red Wings went on to score on the ensuing power play and later added an empty-net goal to beat the Blues.

Television replays clearly showed Backes hit Huskins with a shoulder to the chest and made no contact with Huskins' head. That is, legal and not to the head. Official Ian Walsh saw it – or some might argue didn't see it – differently.

The damage done, the penalty has now been wiped from the records, like Watergate tapes. “It's like it's a non-call,” Blues coach Ken Hitchcock said. “I was told it goes right off the books.”

In effect, it is the NHL's way of acknowledging that the call was absurd. Unfortunately, the teams will not go back to the point in the third period and pick up where they left off before the call influenced the outcome.

Perhaps it delivers a message to officials, who have a tough job supervising a fast sport. Perhaps the message is, when in doubt, don't make a call, particularly in the last few minutes of a tie game.

It often appears the opposite philosophy is employed.
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