Max Pacioretty, who remains in the hospital on Wednesday night after taking a vicious hit from Zdeno Chara about 26 hours prior, finally had a chance to speak out about the hit that left him with a severe concussion and a fractured vertebra. It's safe to say he's furious with Chara and the NHL.
"I am upset and disgusted that the league didn't think enough of (the hit) to suspend him," Pacioretty told TSN. "I'm not mad for myself, I'm mad because if other players see a hit like that and think it's okay, they won't be suspended, then other players will get hurt like I got hurt."
Pacioretty continued by telling TSN's Bob McKenzie that he hoped the NHL would do "something" just to "show that it's not right." On a personal level, I'm shocked that Chara got away without a suspension simply because we know how the NHL feels about optics in these situations. No discipline after a player gets carted off the ice with a concussion and a fractured spine isn't really what we've come to expect in these situations.
More from Pacioretty, again via TSN:
"I heard (Chara) said he didn't mean to do it. I felt he did mean to do it. I would feel better if he said he made a mistake and that he was sorry for doing that, I could forgive that, but I guess he's talking about how I jumped up or something."
"I believe he was trying to guide my head into the turnbuckle. We all know where the turnbuckle is. It wasn't a head shot like a lot of head shots we see but I do feel he targeted my head into the turnbuckle."
That's certainly a hell of an accusation, isn't it? The fact of the matter is really unfortunate, and it's that we have literally no idea what Chara's intent was. Pacioretty has no idea what Chara's intent was, either, especially on a play that develops so quickly on the ice.
The entire situation is full of hearsay and speculation, and that doesn't lend itself to a healthy debate on the issue.