Skinner was in roughly this exact position when Orpik crushed him

Brooks Orpik and the Carolina Hurricanes stopped getting along around the time he plastered Erik Cole from behind and broke his neck. Naturally, on a night that was generally bad for the NHL’s young stars (See: Hall, Taylor) Orpik played against the Hurricanes and angered a fan base once again. Well, angered the ones who lasted after the heart attack.

On this night, Orpik caught the Hurricanes’ Jeff Skinner crossing centre ice with his head down (sort of) while he was reaching to play a puck in front of the benches. The impact resulted in a fair amount of pain for Skinner who appeared to be knocked out for a moment and left the game. Orpik was penalized on the play for interference even though, as I see it, Skinner was making a play on the puck.

Here’s the play.

As far as I’m concerned, this is a clean hit on a good player which is part of the game. Skinner has a concussion history which makes this scary, but at the same time I fail to see any attempt by Orpik to do anything but lay a good hit on him.

Comments (3)

  1. Clean hit.

    Skinner looks Orpik’s way as he skates up ice. He knows Orpik is coming. He has plenty of time to back off and avoid the hit at the expense of abandoning the play. He continues and actually does play the puck just before or at the time of impact.

  2. Brooks was doing what he always does….handing out hits like free candy!!!

  3. We’re going to see a lot of iffy calls through next season as the league learns how to handle issues regarding concussions. It’s been spot lighted heavily by the media and is in the front of everyone’s minds right now. Until the league addresses how to reduce the frequency and severity of concussions throw change (rule change, gear change, whatever) and refs and players have time to settle into this evolution, were going to have refs, players, and fans quickly calling foul on plays that don’t deserve it.

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