Hanzal Suspended Two Games For Petry Hit

Most teams have played between 11 and 13 games this season. And for the eighth time this season a player has faced the wrath of the NHL Player Personnel Department with a suspension for an illegal hit on the ice.

The latest one was Martin Hanzal of the Coyotes who was dealt a two-game suspension for launching himself into Edmonton defenseman Jeff Petry. It was the second charging suspension of the young season, and this time it will cost him $75,609.76 in salary. Hanzal was also a repeat offender, which probably led to the additional game being tacked on.

From the video below, Leech went to explain why the suspension was handed down. As you can see Hanzal left his feet while skating at considerable speed and the primary point of contact was Petry’s head with Hanzal’s forearm. Hanzal could have avoided suspension had he kept his hands/stick down and slowed down before hitting Petry. Hanzal had no business having his stick and hands that high, a smarter players would have applied the check with their hips and hands down considering Petry had already played the puck around the boards.

Hanzal will miss home games tonight against Los Angeles and Thursday against Nashville. He’ll be eligible to return Saturday at San Jose. This season he’s played in 12 games and scored five goals to go along with six assists. He also told Sarah McLellan of the Arizona Republic that he’s been “banged up” and will use the next few days to rest and heal. For tonight’s game they will also be without forwards Lauri Korpikoski, Jeff Halpern, and defenseman Rostislav Klesla.

I’ve always believed that Brendan Shanahan (and now Brian Leech) have done a great job at coming down hard and heavy on players who take illegal cheap shots to the head and body while on the ice. But with eight suspensions being handed down over the first month of the season, has enough been done or does more need to happen to prevent catastrophic injuries from happening during a game. Players have to do a better job of respecting the opponent on the ice and not try to send each other to the hospital during a game.

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