This will no doubt lead to further accusations of my Phaneuf Phetish, but it’s an interesting debate nonetheless. For whatever reason Dion has had an interesting history against the Devils since joining the Leafs. You’ll recall his first game as a Leaf was against the Devils and he fought Colin White within 10 minutes of puck drop. There was last year’s Boxing Day dust-up with Ilya Kovalchuk in New Jersey. That history was added to on Tuesday night.
In the first period of Tuesday’s Leafs/Devils tilt, Phaneuf goes into the corner with Devils captain Zach Parise, and engages him twice. The first time they make contact is pretty harmless with Parise taking the worse of the exchange going hard into the boards. The second encounter is up for debate as Parise is leveled with a borderline hit. It looks to be the classic Phaneuf tucked shoulder hit, but it does appear to make direct contact with Parise’s head.
Take a look.
I’ll be honest: I don’t think that this play was all that bad – just a fast paced encounter in the corner. On one hand it does look like Phaneuf makes contact with the head, but on the other I think it may have been exacerbated by the speed of what happened. I could very well be wrong here, this is just how I see it.
What say you Backhand Shelfers? Good hit? Disciplinary action? Tell me.