directory Light the Lamp - a Columbus Blue Jackets blog: Downie suspended 20 games for hit to head

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Friday, September 28, 2007

Downie suspended 20 games for hit to head

Just in from, Steve Downie has been suspended 20 games by the league for his vicious head hit on Dean McAmmond of the Ottawa Senators.

Campbell, who runs the league's hockey operations and serves as chief disciplinarian, assured the players the league would do something significant about headshots, then backed it up by suspending Downie for 20 games, the fifth-longest suspension in league history.

"We'd be fools if we didn't do anything," Campbell said after announcing the suspension. "It wouldn't be worth having a (hockey operations) department if we did act on it after telling the players we would act upon it."

Campbell said he met with GMs and members of the league's competition committee over the summer and they came up with a total of 52 hits from last season that were considered blows to the head and established five basic criteria for supplementary discipline when it comes to headshots.
A tape was sent to each team and they were warned a player would be subject to a suspension when:

- a player targets an opponent's head;
- launches himself by leaving his feet to hit a player in the head area;
- when a hit to the head is delivered to an unsuspecting opponent;
- when the hit is a late one;
- whether the player delivering the hit is a repeat offender

This was a viscious hit by a kid that was known for such acts throughout his junior career -- you can see the hit below:

Good for the NHL to crack down on such nonsense. Those kinds of needless hits could kill someone. I actually think they could have made that suspension even longer. Hopefully the kid learns the hard way and the rest of the NHL serves notice.


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