Justin Abdelkader ejected for hit on Vladimir Sobotka (Video)

Justin-Abdelkader-Vladmir-SobotkaDetroit Red Wings forward Justin Abdelkader, who is doubling as the Team USA captain at the IIHF World Championship, was ejected on Thursday after laying a vicious hit on Czech Republic’s Vladimir Sobotka. The hit came with the game tied 1-1 in the second period. For whatever reason, it took the officials a little time before making the call.

Abdelkader clearly targeted the head area of Sobotka and left his feet. The hit also appeared to be very late, and you can easily argue that it was dangerous. After Sobotka remained down on the ice while play continued, the referees conferred and decided to give Abdelkader a five-minute major and game misconduct for charging. He was hesitant to leave at first.

The dirty hit may have been a turning point for the Czechs, as they went on to score two goals on the ensuing power play and score a total of three times in the second period en route to a 4-3 victory.

As Eye on Hockey noted, Abdelkader is likely to be suspended for the hit. If he is, the suspension would carry over into any future World Championship games he might be invited to participate in.

Sobotka also plays for the St. Louis Blues. Between the dangerous hit from Abdelkader and an injury to Alex Ovechkin that could be serious, NHL owners must be cringing while watching the IIHF tournament.

GIF via @myregularface

Carey Price out for series against Rangers

Carey-Price-collisionThe Montreal Canadiens were dealt a devastating blow on Monday as goaltender Carey Price has been ruled out for the remainder of the Eastern Conference Finals against the New York Rangers. Canadiens coach Michel Therrien broke the news to reporters.

“We’ve lost our best player, but we’ve faced adversity this year already,” Therrien said.

Price appeared to injure his lower body during Saturday’s 7-2 Game 1 loss against the Rangers when Chris Kreider collided with him. He was pulled after allowing four goals on 20 shots in two periods. Therrien admitted the team is upset about the play.

“I’m really disappointed,” he added. “Obviously he’s our best player. Looking at the incident, it’s a reckless play. That’s the truth.”

Therrien did not say who would start for the Canadiens in Game 2, with his options being Peter Budaj and Dustin Tokarski. Budaj gave up three goals on five shots after taking over for Price in Game 1.

Obviously, this could be the worst thing to happen to Montreal. Price was dominant against the Boston Bruins last round and has been lights out for most of the postseason. You could argue that he was the best player on the ice for the Canadiens.

Jonathan Toews goal disallowed because of goalie interference (Video)

The Chicago Blackhawks thought they had a 2-0 lead during the second period of Game 1 of the Western Conference final against the Los Angeles Kings, but their lead was reduced after a Jonathan Toews goal was disallowed because of goalie interference.

Video of the play is seen above, and below is the prompt explanation from the league about why the goal was called off:

“At 3:22 of the second period in the Los Angeles Kings/Chicago Blackhawks game, the referee consulted video review to see if Jonathan Toews’ initial shot entered the Los Angeles net. It was determined Toews’ initial shot did not enter the net. The referee’s original call on the ice was “good goal” but a discussion between the on-ice officials resulted in a “no goal” decision because Toews made incidental contact with Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick before the puck crossed the goal line. This is not a reviewable play therefore the decision on the ice stands – no goal and no penalty.”

The Blackhawks got a goal from Duncan Keith in the second and then Toews scored on a 3-on-1 in the third to make it 3-1, so they won despite having the goal taken away.

Was taking that goal away the right call? Probably by the letter of the law, but it looks like the puck was in before Toews made contact with Quick:

Jonathan Toews goal

Alex Ovechkin suffers right leg injury in IIHF game (Video)

Alex Ovechkin leg injuryAlex Ovechkin suffered a right leg injury during an IIHF World Championships game between Russia and Germany on Sunday. Russia won the preliminary game 3-0, but Ovechkin got hurt on a hip check from Marcus Kink in the third period.

Ovechkin was helped off the ice and taken to a hospital.

The Capitals put out a statement saying they are aware of the injury and in communication with the Russian medical staff. Ovi had 79 points in 78 games for the Caps this season. His 51 goals led the league, but was not enough to get the Caps into the playoffs.

Teemu Selanne gets beautiful stick salute from Kings (Video)

Teemu Selanne DucksTeemu Selanne’s storied career came to an end on Friday night after a disappointing 6-2 defeat to the Los Angeles Kings in Game 7 of the Anaheim Ducks’ Western Conference semifinal series. Though Selanne did not go out with the exit he was hoping for with his team, he certainly received a sendoff for which he was worthy.

The Kings remained on the ice following their win to give Selanne a stick salute, as did the Ducks. Selanne grew emotional at the site and barely was able to keep himself from crying.

At 43, Selanne does not plan to play in the NHL again, though he has left the door open for the possibility of playing in the KHL.

Selanne broke into the NHL in the 1992-93 season as a rookie phenom with the Winnipeg Jets. He has played 1,451 games and scored 684 goals while recording 773 assists for an impressive total of 1,457 points, and he considers the 2007 Stanley Cup he won with Anaheim to be one of the crowning moments of his career.

“The 2007 Stanley Cup has to be the biggest crown for my career,” Selanne said after the game via the AP. “To be honest, the most proud I am is I have been able to play so many years and at this age. You all know when you get older, it’s not going to get any easier. But to be able to compete against these young guys and still enjoy this and play well, that has been the greatest thing in my career. I’m really thankful for that.”

Selanne ranks 15th in NHL history in total points and 11th in goals. He’s been playing so long that I remember being in fourth freaking grade when he burst onto the scene with 76 goals as a 22-year-old rookie. He led the league in goals two more times during his career and made 10 All-Star games. He will go down as one of the greatest Ducks and players in league history.

Martin St. Louis moves mother’s funeral because of Game 1 conflict

Martin St LouisMartin St. Louis moved the date of his mother’s funeral from Saturday to Sunday because of a conflict with Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals.

The Rangers asked the NHL to move the date of Game 1 between them and the Montreal Canadiens to accommodate St. Louis, but the league would not make the change. The league plan to televise Game 1 after the Preakness Stakes.

St. Louis’ mother, France, died of a heart attack last Thursday at 63. The Rangers rallied from a 3-1 series deficit to the Pittsburgh Penguins and won Game 7 on Tuesday. During the three-game comeback, St. Louis scored a goal in Game 6 on Mother’s Day.

The Rangers plan to attend the funeral as a team Sunday to support their teammate.

I don’t blame the NHL for not moving the game; that’s a pretty huge thing to change and it would take a lot more than the funeral of one player’s mother for them to move it. But that’s pretty cool that the Rangers will join together to support their teammate.

Tip via David B.

Milan Lucic told Dale Weise ‘I’m going to f—ing kill you next year’

Milan-Lucic-Dale-Weise-handshakeThe Boston Bruins were dominated by the Montreal Canadiens at home in Game 7 on Wednesday night, and Milan Lucic did not take it well. Like the rest of his teammates, Lucic shook hands with his most bitter rivals after the series ended. But it doesn’t sound like he did so with class.

As you can see from the clip above that Eye on Hockey passed along, Lucic angrily went through the handshake line and had words with a number of Montreal players, including Alexei Emelin and Dale Weise. What did the Bruins forward have to say?

We don’t know if that’s true or not, but we’re fairly certain Lucic wasn’t wishing anyone good luck in the next series. He refused to talk about what he said.

“That’s said on the ice so it’ll stay on the ice, so if he wants to be a baby about it, he can make it public,” Lucic said after the game.

Who was being the real baby? Just by saying he’s going to kill someone “next year,” Lucic makes his threat unworthy of a response. The Canadiens still get to play hockey and contend for a Stanley Cup while the Bruins are free to dust off the golf clubs. Losing on your home ice in Game 7 is embarrassing enough, let alone losing to your biggest rival. Lucic can threaten people all he wants, he’s still going home.