First, our thoughts are with Mason Raymond and his family as he suffered a suspected fractured vertebrae on a hit from Johnny Boychuk and may be sidelined for four-to-six months.
Here’s the video of the hit:
For now, I’ll ignore the chants of “Diver” from the ever-so-classy Boston fans as Raymond lies down obviously hurt and being attended to on the ice – their douchebaginess speak for themselves.
But pay attention to when Boychuk hits Raymond. The puck is nowhere near him; Kesler had it and even had time to make a play. It was a late hit – almost 2 seconds late – on a player who was in a vulnerable position.
When the NHL suspended Aaron Rome for four Stanley Cup Finals games for his hit on Nathan Horton, Mike Murphy called it a hockey play – “a hockey play went bad”. The hit itself was only a fraction of a second late, but then he also admitted that the length of Rome’s suspension was for “the lateness combined with the injury”.
Raymond was hit longer than a fraction of a second late. Like Horton, he was in a vulnerable position. And like Horton, he was seriously injured.
If Rome’s hit on Horton was deemed worthy of 4-game suspension in the Stanley Cup Finals – for a hockey play gone bad – why doesn’t the NHL think Boychuk’s hit is even worthy of a review?
Or has the standard changed again?
The Canucks have issued a press release. Mason Raymond sustained a vertebrae compression fracture. He is expected to be out of the lineup for 3-4 months.