Wednesday, the NHL suspended Duncan Keith for one game after his irresponsible, selfish, and reckless high stick on Jeff Carter. Watch Brendan Shanahan's explanation below. I'll meet you underneath.
I'm going to ask everyone reading this blog to take off their Blackhawk hats for a second. Put down the red and black pom poms for a moment. Put the rally towel in the washing machine. Put the headdress on the...well...you get the point.
Think of this as Johan Franzen slashing Jonathan Toews...then tell me what you think.
What Duncan Keith did was reckless and stupid. What Jeff Carter did was nearly as reckless and just as stupid, but we're not talking about Jeff Carter. Keith's decision to react the way he did was stupid, and he immediately realized it when he tried to skate over to Carter and apologize after the incident. Sure, that's a nice gesture, but it doesn't change what he did.
To be perfectly honest, I didn't think the slash warranted a suspension after the game last night, but after watching this .GIF over and over again, you see the intent was there. As soon as I saw that, I said "suspension."
Keith is emerging as a bit of a hot head. You have the elbow to Daniel Sedin, that landed him a 5 game suspension. You have his 2009 elbow to Matt Cooke. Now, you have this suspension coming at the most critical of times.
A player as valuable to his team as Keith must rise above little cheap shots by the opponent. Make them pay on the scoreboard. That's the best revenge. Carter would glady take 20 stitches a game if it meant a playoff win. Almost every hockey player would. Now, with Keith out for Game 4 and Niklas Hjalmarsson playing on a badly bruised knee, the Kings have negated 2 of the Hawks' top 3 defenders.
Keith needs to be in better control of his emotions, especially this time of year.