NHL Canadian Corner – Saturday, February 23, 2013.

The Canucks shut out the Predators, Erik Karlsson talks about his leg injury, the NHL hands Taylor Hall a two-game suspension, plus the latest on  Zach Redmond, James Reimer, Mike Cammalleri and Brendan Gallagher.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE/THE TENNESSEAN: Dale Weise’s goal midway through the third proved the game winner as the Vancouver Canucks blanked the Nashville Predators 1-0. Roberto Luongo made 23 saves for the shutout. Canucks defenseman Kevin Bieksa left the game in the third period with a groin injury and will be re-evaluated today.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canucks were finally icing a healthy lineup before Bieksa’s injury, with Ryan Kesler and David Booth recently returning to action. Luongo, meanwhile, continues to play well, making it harder for Canucks GM Mike Gillis to move him.

Erik Karlsson has few kind words for Matt Cooke.

Erik Karlsson has few kind words for Matt Cooke.

OTTAWA CITIZEN: Injured Senators defenseman Erik Karlsson met the press yesterday for the first time since his left Achilles tendon was lacerated by the skate of Pittsburgh Penguins forward Matt Cooke. Karlsson tried to stress the positives of his recovery, even hoping to return before the playoffs, but had few kind words for Cooke.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Karlsson doesn’t believe Cooke meant to slice his leg, but feel the Penguin intended to hurt him one way or another. I understand why Karlsson is upset, but it was obvious his injury was the result of an accident. Cooke has also cleaned up his act since getting a 17-game suspension two years ago. He realizes he risk a permanent suspension if he continued his dirty tactics.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The NHL has suspended Oilers forward Taylor Hall two games for a knee-on-knee hit against Minnesota Wild forward Cal Clutterbuck.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s his first NHL suspension, and hopefully it’ll be his last. 

WINNIPEG SUN: A Toronto emergency room physician credited the quick action of the Winnipeg Jets players, coaches and trainers in saving the life of defenseman Zach Redmond, who suffered a slashed femoral artery during a practice in Carolina.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Quick thinking by teammate Anthony Peluso, assistant coach Perry Pearn and athletic therapist Rob Millette definitely saved Redmond from bleeding to death.

CALGARY SUN: The Flames are moving Mike Cammalleri to center between Curtis Glencross and Lee Stempniak in hopes of shaking up their offense.

TORONTO SUN: Maple Leafs goalie James Reimer is frustrated over being sidelined by an MCL strain.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens rookie Brendan Gallagher will return to action tonight against the NY Rangers after missing a week to a concussion.


  1. Taylor Hall did well to escape with a 2 game suspension. Intent to injure is always a judgmental call but it does appear here anyways that he led with his knee. I was hoping we saw the last of crap like that when Bryan Marchment finally retired. Well lets hope this suspension is the first and last for Taylor Hall.

    • Definitely a bad hit by Hall, he obviously acted out of frustration over the Oilers lack of success this season. I agree with you hoping that this is the first and last suspension for Hall but come on, comparing this one incident with Marchment? Marchment tried to injure on a regular basis, Hall tried to lay a big hit but didn’t intend to put Clutterbuck on the IR. That’s why suspensions are based on history, and why Hall “escaped” with 2 games. I think Hall deserves the benefit of the doubt before we compare a sniper to an enforcer. He is an emotional player and this time, he took it too far but I’m sure he will learn from it. I don’t think he’s the type of player that likes to sit out of games.

  2. I am a fan, or at least was, of Karlsson but after listening to him whine about Matt Cooke always out to get him I have to wonder at his maturity. Does he think that he is the first super star to be targetted by the other teams pest? For as long as hockey has been played there has been someone trying to throw the other teams best player off his game and Cooke is not the first or even the best of them. Someone needs to tell Karlsson that’s what comes with stardom and he needs to suck it up and keep his mouth shut. Sure, what happened to him was an awful accident perpetrated by some one that he doesn’t like but it happens, just ask Winnepeg’s Zack Redmond, and his was life threatening and done to him by a teammate.
    I am not a fan of Matt Cooke per say but after watching the replay dozens of times along with a sports show that showed other players lifting their leg when they checked the only conclusion that I can come to is that it was an unfortunate (though preventable) accident. Karlsson sounds like a whiny little kid rather than a star playing a man’s game.

    After Karlsson had his injury Don Cherry said that he had “his Bruins” tape their Achilles protector to their shin pads to prevent accidents like these from happening and Ron MacLean talked about cut resistant socks…which all teams have available for their players to wear…and how these measures would have prevented Karlsson’s injury. The sad part about Redmond’s injury, at least according to one sports talk show, was that he was wearing the cut resistant socks but the cut happened higher up, past where the sock ends. This all goes to prove that no matter how many or what type of precautions a player takes there is a chance that one of the twenty four ( thirty two if you count the officials) razor sharp blades on the ice during every shift could come in contact with an unprotected part of the body and cause serious along with career as well as life threatening injury.
    No one will hear Redmond bemoaning a fellow NHLer or teammate over his season ending injury and Karlsson needs to take a page from that book and move on.

    • Karlsson is on the ice against Cooke a lot over the past few seasons. He knows what is happening — not you.

      Karlsson said he didn’t believe Cooke meant to cut him – it was accidental.. but he did mean to hurt him. He also said Cooke’s hands were high. It wasn’t the first time he was hit hard by Cooke and it won’t be the last. He knows he is targeted when on the ice by the other teams.. it comes with winning the Norris Trophy last season – he’s not stupid. This was his first media scrum since the incident. He was asked the questions and he answered them.

      Karlsson has the right to say what he wants. It is what he feels. If other fans don’t like it they don’t have to listen to it. Same goes for the media.

      At some point, someone is going to really upset Cooke and he is going to lose it again. It is just a matter of time.

      Yes the Redmond incident was scary and he was cut by a teammate… but the incidents are not similar. Redmond fell and he teammate stepped on him. Karlsson was hit into the boards by an opposing player.

    • BTW — how many players in today’s game.. tape the top of their skates…

    • I can’t agree with you on this one. In my (somewhat biased) opinion I think he was fairly restrained in what he said about Matt Cooke. I find it odd that so many posters on boards have risen to the defence of this guy. He has a history of cheap shots and saying he’s been suspension free for 18 months is no real accomplishment. Sorry but we are all judged by the history of our actions. It’s precisely why repeat offenders in the justice system receive harsher sentences. Karlsson did not state that he thought Cooke deliberately tried to use his skate to cut his achilles but he did suggest that he believed Cooke was trying to get him, perhaps with the intention to injure. With Cooke’s history of cheap hits that’s certainly not a stretch to imagine being the case. I nor anyone else really knows what Cooke’s true intentions were so I’m going to judge him solely on his previous behaviour and leave it at that.
      As for Don Cherry, plain and simple he’s a clown and his schtick has gotten very lame. Referring to something that was done back in the 70’s when ‘he had his Bruins’ isn’t worth repeating and in my mind laughable. Teams cannot insist players do that sort of thing today, in fact teams can’t even insist that players use kevlar socks either. All Cherry’s doing is his usual ‘blame the victim’ thing, likely because Karlsson’s Swedish and doesn’t play for Toronto or Boston. Don Cherry used to be an institution on CBC but now he’s become nothing short of an embarrassment. Everyone needs to retire sometime…

  3. Like I’ve said elsewhere, Matt Cooke cleaned up his act last season. Good for him. But one season doesn’t make up for a career of dirty play.