Sunday, October 11, 2009

A Rant Directed to Dan Barnes

Dan Barnes wrote a doozy of a column in the Edmonton Journal yesterday that really irked me. The column is When old-time hockey lacks old-fashioned accountability: Quinn, Iginla were both out of line on Thursday night.

While he rightfully dismisses Quinn's rant as unacceptable, he also calls for supplementary discipline and possible suspension for Iginla. His reasoning is as follows:

Because, despite their stated intentions to do no harm, the impact of Iginla's carelessness and the context in which Quinn delivered his nostalgic appreciation for vigilante justice demanded they both receive a slap. Iginla was penalized for tripping, but should have been fined or suspended because he placed his stick in a dangerous position and Souray suffered a concussion as a direct result. Quinn was fined Friday because anyone listening to his post-game remarks could easily have come away thinking he wanted one of his players to club rather than fight Iginla, though Quinn stressed Saturday that was not his intent.

It's quite clear from the footage that it was nothing but an accident. If you look at the video, Iginla was lucky he didn't get a concussion himself as he went head-first into the boards pretty hard. He also has a sterling track record and is widely known as one of the most respectful and classiest guys in the league.

So supplementary discipline? Even throwing around the word "suspension"?

Give me a break.

It's a fast-paced sport with hard-fought battles and a lot of room for a lot of things to go wrong. Sometimes they do. To call for the suspension of a player for something that was indisputably an accident is the height of stupidity that I've seen from sports journalism this year. So, congratulations Dan Barnes...

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