Mmmmm finger.

There’s a generally accepted ruled in our society that attempting to eat the body part of another person is poor behaviour. But last night Alex Burrows was presented with a situation that’s troubled the human race since the days of stick figures on walls.

If for whatever reason the hand of another person has been inserted into your mouth, what’s the proper conduct? Our internal defence mechanism generally prompts the instinct to act swiftly and chow down. But regardless of instinct, is this socially acceptable? Is there a situation in which biting is mandatory, and you’re thought of as a lesser man if a paper cut-sized indent isn’t left on the hand of your attacker?

We may never know the answers to these questions, but we now know the NHL’s stance on biting, at least in this instance. After reviewing Burrows’ alleged hunger attack that led to him biting Patrice Bergeron’s finger during a scrum at the end of the first period last night, the league announced Thursday afternoon that Burrows will not face any supplemental discipline.

With Colin Campbell having stepped down from his position as official bite regulator senior vice president of hockey operations, Mike Murphy handled the bite assessment and decided that there was in fact no bite at all.

Tell us how you arrived at that conclusion, Mr. Murphy.

“After reviewing the incident, including speaking with the on-ice officials, I can find no conclusive evidence that Alex Burrows intentionally bit the finger of Patrice Bergeron.”

Hey, Jerry debunked the Keith Hernandez spitting incident quite thoroughly, but that doesn’t mean it didn’t happen. Since there was some significant debate last night amongst the battling keyboard warriors who argued that Burrows didn’t actually bite Bergeron, even though Bergeron had the wound to prove it, let’s dissect the video footage frame-by-frame to see if we can find this elusive video evidence.

To do this we used advanced Photoshop technology to create screen captures, technology the NHL doesn’t have.

And here we go…

This is the first sign of a potential escalation from facewash to finger feast. Burrows sees and feels the finger, and it’s at this specific instant that he has a vital decision to make.

Now the situation has become far more complex by the presence of a second finger, making Burrows’ decision even more complicated/easier.

This is the crucial, perhaps damning moment. After sliding down his face the fingers enter the oral region. The CSI officials at the league’s head office determined that Burrows’ next move did not involve a clamping motion, but the photo evidence tells another story.

From the open-mouthed position Burrows does indeed close down. Where this becomes difficult is determining whether or not Bergeron’s finger was still inside of Burrows’ mouth following the clamp down, a question that even our advanced technology can’t answer. Which brings us to the depressing conclusion of supporting the league’s decision since definitive evidence of a bite that inflicted damage doesn’t exist.

You win this time, Burrows. But Big Brother is always watching.