|Photo: Highland Park Hockey|
Written by: Tony Androckitis - Twitter/Facebook
The Lehigh Valley Phantoms (32-15-2) were blown out by their rival Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins (37-11-3) for the second time in less than two weeks Tuesday night at the Mohegan Sun Arena.
Thursday afternoon, the American Hockey League (AHL) announced that Sam Morin has been suspended two games as a result of his cross-checking incident with Penguins' forward Garrett Wilson 4:21 into the first period.
Penguins' beat reporter Seth Lakso mentioned after Tuesday's game that the Penguins were undecided about whether they'd send tape of the hit to the league. Clearly, they decided to send it in.
Morin will miss both of the Phantoms' games this weekend - Friday and Saturday against the Hartford WolfPack.
For the entire month of February, 50% of my donations will be donated to the Building Hope For Kids Project. You can help by making a donation today via GoFundMe or PayPal!
Here's the hit in question.
The Phantoms were carrying seven healthy defensemen at the time of Morin's suspension. If an extra body is needed for depth, expect Max Lamarche to be called up from Reading.
Below are a list of topics for discussion relating to Morin's hit on Wilson and factors in play regarding his two-game suspension:
- In this situation, it can be classified an unnecessary hit with Willson reaching for a stretch pass to the tip puck into O-zone and avoid an icing play. No real offensive threat.
- There definitely does NOT appear to be any intent to injure on this play. It's a shove to the back, yes, but it didn't appear malicious when I saw play live.
- You can argue Wilson puts himself into a defenseless position & was off-balance - perhaps making the shove in back appear worse than reality.
- Wilson's departure 4:21 into game, plus later discovered long term injury likely plays a factor -regardless if you think it should/shouldn't.
- Simply put, a good rule of thumb is if you can see players #'s on his back you don't hit him. Penalty? Yes. Suspension-level hit? Debatable.
Here's a hit Sam Morin put on Travis Boyd in a game back on October 30th in Hershey that didn't result in a suspension. It's worth noting Boyd remained in game.