Hockey Night in Canada's Scott Morrison delivers his insights into the world of hockey, on and off the ice.
No common sense behind Simon decision
Tuesday, September 25, 2007 | 12:22 AM ET
By Scott Morrison
Okay, so NHL rules allow Chris Simon to participate in the pre-season despite his being suspended for 25 games for a dangerous stick-swinging incident last spring.
The logic behind that is subject to debate, naturally, but let's just accept for a minute that it all makes perfect sense.
What doesn't make sense, however, is that Simon was allowed, or was penciled in, or both, to play an exhibition game Monday night against the New York Rangers, the team against whom he earned his wicked 25-game suspension.
Where is the common sense?
Simon shouldn't have been anywhere near the ice against the Rangers for all the obvious reasons. And especially since the Rangers decided to dress Ryan Hollweg, the player Simon chopped down his with his stick back on March 8 to earn the supreme wrath of the league.
Can you say retribution?
But there they were together on the ice Monday night in Long Island and the mayhem was, well, as predictable and it was entirely avoidable. Hollweg and Simon sparred and jabbed with each other. According to reports, they poked each other with their sticks and, eventually the game featured a brawl in large part because of their dual presence.
Or at the very least because of the presence of Simon.
Four players were kicked out of the game, including Simon, who also received a major for charging.
All of this while Simon still has five games remaining on his suspension. They are five regular-season games that remain, after he served part of his time to close out the last regular season and the five games the Islanders played in the playoffs, but one wonders why a player suspended for disciplinary reasons is allowed to participate in a pre-season game.
And, like we said, even if that makes some kind of sense, what was he doing on the ice Monday night against the Rangers and Hollweg?
Any guesses what kind of attention this garners the league south of the border?
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About the Author
Scott Morrison, the recipient of the Hockey Hall of Fameís 2006 Elmer Ferguson Memorial Award, has been covering hockey for 25 years. The Toronto native began his career at the Toronto Sun in 1979. After spending more than 11 years as a hockey writer and columnist at the paper, Morrison became Sports Editor in 1991 and led the section to being named one of North America's top-ten sports sections in 1999 - the first sports section in Canada to receive the AP Sports Editors North American Award. Scott, a former two-term president of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association, joined Rogers Sportsnet in 2001 as Managing Editor, Hockey, and is currently both a commentator on Hockey Night in Canada and a columnist for CBC.ca.
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