NHL Blog Beat – April 19, 2012.

More commentary on the fallout from the Torres hit on Hossa, why the Devils-Panthers series has been so entertaining, the good and bad news of the Devils performance so far, a personal history of the Panthers through their draft picks, and how the Coyotes are beating the Blackhawks, 

 

Evil? Dirty? Misunderstood? A product of his environment?

PUCK DADDY: Greg Wyshynski on some of the media over-reaction toward the Raffi Torres hit in particular, and the recent rash of questionable hits in general, correctly pointing out, as much as it pains him to do so, that the league is in fact maintaining the same standard toward suspensions in the playoffs as it has during the season. So no, Brendan Shanahan isn’t in over his head, nor has he lost his spine. And no, many of the dirty hits and cheapshots aren’t being delivered by no-talented knuckle-draggers.

MC79HOCKEY.COM: Tyler Dellow believes the problem is a system of rules which renders players fair game long after they’re no longer in possession of the puck, along with confusing rules regarding hits to the head, creating a line for players like Torres to play close to. Dellow’s analysis is perhaps the best I’ve read on this issue.

BACKHAND SHELF: Justin Bourne on how players can get mentally locked in on hitting a player, even if the hit crosses the line.

OFF WING OPINION: Eric McErlain offers his opinion on the suggestion of adding a third referee.

 BACKHAND SHELF: Daniel Wagner believes if you’re not watching the Panthers-Devils series, you’re missing out. He’s right, y’know. The series most observers thought would be the least exciting of the opening round has become one of the most exciting so far.

GRANTLAND.COM: Kent Russell offers up a personal history of the Florida Panthers through their draft picks. Remember when Nathan Horton and Jay Bouwmeester was supposed to be their saviours? Panthers fans do, and the memories aren’t particularly happy ones.

IN LOU WE TRUST: Matt Evans SNC on the good and bad news of the New Jersey Devils performance thus far in the opening round.

THE HOCKEY WRITERS: Cristopher Lackey explains the Phoenix Coyotes are beating the Chicago Blackhawks by living on the edge, and it’s not the same one Raffi Torres lives on.