Thursday, December 20, 2007

Simon says

"I wasn't trying to injure him. I tripped him and I was telling him to [expletive], and I did step on his foot. I pushed down on his skate, I don't deny that, but I wasn't trying to hurt him. I don't think a player has ever missed a game from one of my suspensions.

"I look at other guys who have been repeat offenders. One guy used his skate a second time and he got only five games. What I did was wrong, but this is unfair."
A very nice follow-up story from Roy MacGregor.

Is 30 games enough? I suppose it depends on the intent here: My feeling is that Gary Bettman and company are hoping this is the end for Simon, and that a suspension long enough to effectively take him close to the end of this season will make him see that writing on the wall. Simon will be 36 next month, and has had by all accounts a terrible season, averaging less than seven minutes ice time per game for the first time in his career.

Is 30 games enough? If the intent's to force Simon into an early retirement, probably not, as in MacGregor's piece he sounds determined to either appeal or try to make good on some sort of a comeback attempt.

It's going to be very difficult for him to now ever rehabilitate his image in the eyes of hockey fans, however, as seven suspensions is just far too many. The intent may not have been there to injure Jarkko Ruutu, but the same can be said for Todd Bertuzzi's unfortunate attempt to send a message to Steve Moore.

A skate blade is a weapon. And Simon used it.

UPDATE Eric Duhatschek has more.

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At 3:01 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger saskhab said...

Or you can have 7 suspensions, ranging from stick swinging to leaving the bench during a fight to stepping on Finnish players to crosschecking guys in the face to a headshot on Dean McAmmond and still be considered by some as the best d-man in the league.... all only missing 13 games from the suspensions as a result.

What Simon did was despicable, but to miss 55 games the past 2 years and essentially be declared by the NHL as the dirtiest player of all time is pretty excessive. There is no doubt that the NHL doesn't want Chris Simon to play in the NHL anymore, just as there is little doubt that the NHL wants Chris Pronger dressed as often as possible.

At 3:06 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger Chase said...

he wasn't trying to injure him you guys! he was just telling him to move! and he wouldn't listen! what would you do in that situation! I challenge anyone to be in that same situation and NOT almost sever someones foot. I DEFY you to do it. You couldn't.

At 3:19 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger rickibear said...

No one has ever died from being slashed accross the chest and the stick bounce in the guys face (simon on hollwegg.)
No one has died from a skate step on a boot. (Simon on Rutto) I saw what a broken beer bottle in a river can do to a 4 year olds foot. (my little sister.)

People have died from Checks from behind. (Hollwegg on Simon.)

People have died from crosschecks to the head. (Modanno on TooToo.)

In a court of Law what TooToo did to Robidas is considered self defence.

Though I would like to thank Robidas for a valuable lesson. If you are trying to old school sucker someone do not lead with your face.

What can we learn from Colin Campbells decision making. If your white and you committ a life threatening suspendable offence on a native person. You will not be suspended.

If you are native and commit a non life risking offence on a white player or try to defend yourself from a white player we will suspend you.

No wonder Simon needs time off for anger issues. He is pissed because the league wont let him protect himself or his other players because of the color of his skin.

Class act NHL. Class act Campbell.
Maybe Colin Campbell needs Anger and Racial management.

At 3:49 p.m., December 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Beruzzi, Ohlund, Pronger all received less than Simon. Nolan couldn't get a job fro ten years and his son got stopped from crossing the border, no racism in Canada?

At 3:49 p.m., December 20, 2007, Anonymous Shabbadoo said...

Rickibear, you need to take a step back and give your head a shake.

While Campbell made an insensitive remark, it doesn't take away from the fact that this is Simon's 8th suspension.

Simon is extremely lucky he hasn't severely hurt anyone yet.

This isn't a case of the big bad white-man holding down Natives. This is about an individual who has consistently made poor choices on the ice.

Saying crap like "no one has died from a skate step on a boot". This could have easily resulted in a worst injury that Bieksa's sliced calf muscle (which was a freak accident). It doesn't take someone dying to merit a suspension.

At 3:51 p.m., December 20, 2007, Anonymous Shabbadoo said...

Excuse my lack of proof-reading on the last comment.

At 4:40 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger PPP said...

Isn't there a Canadian in Swiss jail because he slashed a guy across the chest and he died? (Or somewhere in Italy)

Also, Simon should be out of the NHL. It has nothing to do with race but with two horrible incidents that coincided with the NHL's desire to actually punish players what they deserve.

That he got more than Bertuzzi is not a reason to lessen Simon's punishment. It is a reason to wish that the NHL had come down harder on Bert.

At 4:46 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger rickibear said...

Maybe it is not White v Native.

Its North Amersican anglo-european V. non-NAAE.

Two more examples:

Tucker left his feet to hurt Kappanen. No suspension.

Suter only getting 4 games for cross check accross the face of Kariya.

Yup its either a hatred of Natives or Non-NAAE.

As long as you are inconsistant with your punishment you are open to any critism.

Shabadoo: Its all about spin!

Under the Canadian Human Rights Act, first proclaimed in 1977 and amended in 1996, it is against the law for any employer or provider of service that falls within federal jurisdiction to make unlawful distinctions based on the following prohibited grounds: race, national or ethnic origin, colour, religion, age, sex (including pregnancy and childbirth), marital status, mental or physical disability (including previous or present drug or alcohol dependence), pardoned conviction, or sexual orientation.

Colin Campbell should go to jail.

At 4:49 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger Adam C said...

No one has ever died from being slashed accross the chest

You make a rather unconvincing case anyway, but as PPP says, remember the last two paragraphs of this story.

At 5:11 p.m., December 20, 2007, Anonymous said...

The main thing here is that Chris Simon did not learn anything from being suspended for his attack on Hollweg. He broke the suspensions record twice in the span of 30 games played. Simon deserved what he got, the problem is that many others deserved the same.

Rickybear, here is an example to ponder: Marty McSorley's career ending slash on Donald Brashear.

At 5:51 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger PPP said...

Tucker did not leave his feet to hit Kapanen and I doubt you'd find even a Flyers fan to argue that he did.

Adam, thanks for doing the legwork. I knew it was a league in the Alps.

Suter also didn't get suspended for the hit from behind on Gretzky.

At 6:23 p.m., December 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ban Simon and Bettman from the game. They are both no good for it.

At 8:18 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger rickibear said...

Now if any of you have taken my first two posts seriouslly then I think you need some conspiracy theory training.

I must admit when reviewing the types of deaths in hockey last night there was limited information and no refrence to the death in Switzerland. The slash to the chest area and the concern for blows in the heart area was a concern.

(But Finally the two key points have been addressed.

1. Accepting resposibility for the action.

2. The inconsistency of the league in penalizing the players based on result rather than what the true intent was.

Simon has been punished both times for intent. I applaud Campbell for that. Slashing a person accross the chest (holwegg) and using a skate to make a statement (ruttu)are unacceptable actions.

Simon made no excuses for his actions and he made a call on Mr. Campbells inconsitancy. They have only been giving out 5 game suspensions for skate actions.

Craig Adams slashes down on a guys head and only gets two games. I thought it was at least 20 Mr. Campbell. No consistency.

When we had conversations at work over these issues only one thing can be aggreed upon. Colin Campbell has no credibility.

Therefore the punishments lack credibility.

The one that bothers me the most is the Mike Modano Jordon TooToo incedent. Mike Modano intended to slash tootoo accross the head with the intent to hurt him. The same offensive intent as Hollweggs check from behind on Simon, Simons slash on Holwegg, and Addams slash on Steen.

Can any of you come up with a reason for the inconsistency?

I provided two. Prove me wrong.

At 9:10 p.m., December 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

HOw many suspensions does Hollweg and Modano have? I bet combined they are not 8.

At 10:12 p.m., December 20, 2007, Anonymous Anonymous said...

colin campbell is weak and always has been. this suspension just gives flyers excuses to continue their 'physical' play

At 10:35 p.m., December 20, 2007, Blogger Adam C said...

Rikibear (if I may):

NHL suspensions are certainly inconsistent. Your suggested reasons for this are racism, based on:

1) Simon is Native, and was treated harshly.
2) Tootoo is Native, and actions against him were treated leniently.

To prove you wrong:
1) McSorley is not Native, and was treated harshly. Plus (if it matters) Brashear is black.
2) Andrew Alberts is not Native, and Scott Hartnell's check was treated leniently.
3) Jessie Boulerice is not Native, and was treated almost as harshly for his first offense as Simon was for his sixth, over very similar infractions (and please don't give us any more garbage about Simon aiming for the chest).

NHL suspensions are wildly inconsistent and generally too light. This is why I personally never complain that someone was treated too harshly. Simon deserved everything he got regardless of what other players may have gotten away with.

At 12:10 a.m., December 21, 2007, Blogger rickibear said...

Adam C: Your almost getting it. Do you take the neutral approach. But then that takes the passion out of the fan.

The two examples are just examples. Do I believe those are the reasons. I don't know!
When I say prove me wrong I am saying can you guys come up with the reasons for the all over the board decisions.
Is he driven by the media. Does he arbitrarily write numbers down and flip coins to come up with a number. Is Simon unlucky because Campbells afternoon shits have been bad.

All I can come up with is TSN's prevailing sentiment has influence.
His attending Maple Leaf functions shelters the leafs from real punishment.
If you are a super star your punishment is inversely proportional to fan popularity.

These are trite answers and the sentimentality of belief. What is the real answer?

At 12:28 a.m., December 21, 2007, Blogger Adam C said...

I personally believe there are several contributing factors:

1) The relative severity of these incidents really is subjective, and we're not all going to agree about which is worse;
2) Standards change over time, so comparing incidents from 10 years ago to this season is difficult;
3) I really believe they are influenced by media coverage, most evident in the McSorley case, and marketing issues;
4) I don't think the NHL is a very competently run league (cue Gerald). I don't think that as an institution they are able to agree on the appropriate length of suspensions, and as a result everything is on a case-by-case basis where all of the above factors take precedence over consistency.

I do think it's ludicrous to cry racism over an extremely small sample set when there are a much larger number of counter-examples than the ones I listed. Napoleon said, "Never ascribe to malice that which can adequately be explained by incompetence".

At 9:33 a.m., December 21, 2007, Blogger PPP said...

His attending Maple Leaf functions shelters the leafs from real punishment.

Yeah, the Leafs are notorious for getting off easy with suspensions. [/rolls eyes]

But I am glad to see that you were not being serious with the racism charges Rickibear.

As to why it's so inconsistent I like Adam C's response. And I think it's been generally accepted that Campbell just spins a wheel.

At 5:08 p.m., December 21, 2007, Blogger Jonathan said...

Just to remind those people who think Simon's suspension is too long:

1997: Simon suspended 3 games for calling Edmonton Oiler Mike Grier a "nigger".
2000: Simon suspended 1 game for cross-checking Pittsburgh Penguin Peter Popovic across the throat.
2001: Simon suspended 1 game for elbowing Anders Eriksson.
2004: Simon suspended 2 games for cross-checking Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ruslan Fedotenko and than jumping on him and punching him, and suspended 2 more games for kneeing Dallas Star Sergei Zubov
2007: Simon suspended 25 games for slashing New York Ranger Ryan Hollweg in the face.

Than he stomped on Jarkko Ruutu's foot. Honestly, anyone who defends this guy with a straight face should take a long hard look at his record. He's probably only complaining that his suspension is unfair because he's used to getting 1-2 games for trying to injure people.

At 5:19 p.m., December 21, 2007, Blogger Jennifer said...

I wasn't trying to injure him. I only stomped on his foot...

Ugh. He so egregiously intentionally tried to injure. He's a head case who deserves his suspension. Fighting is one thing... at least you can see what's coming and choose to defend yourself. It's another when you're down on the ice and someone stomps on your ankle! Or someone boards you head first trying to knock you out. These kinds of on-ice assault need to be addressed asap. It's out of control. Especially, it seems within the Philly organization. Simon is guilty but he's not the only one.


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