The Bergeron hit
A teammate's perspective
“Every coach expects you to finish your check. But [Jones] has to realize when guys are vulnerable. [Bergeron] wasn't in a position to score. He was keeping the puck in [after it had been dumped behind the Boston net].”
“Look at the number of guys who have played eight, nine, 10 years and have never had an incident like that. Even in the heat of the game, you have time to make decisions. That's what we're good at – thinking quickly.”Ference is a hard-nosed defenceman, a guy who has put up some big penalty minutes and laid big hits throughout his eight-year career. As far as I can discern, he's never been suspended.
Granted, he's talking about a teammate here, so sure there's some bias, but I don't think that's the issue. Even Randy Jones has said it was an illegal hit, one he regrets making — and that's a good thing.
Step 2 is getting to the point where that pivotal moment doesn't result in a star player's head crushed along the boards. Patrice Bergeron's a significant part of the NHL's ridiculous youth movement at the moment, and his concussion could have easily been Patrick Kane's or Andrew Cogliano's or any of the game's other burgeoning stars.
We can't blame a potentially career-ending hit that occurs on a routine play on the victim.