Mike Richards asked Darren Pang of the NBC broadcast crew a question about his hit on Buffalo Sabres forward Tim Connolly -- something along the lines of "did Connolly [trip up] before he hit the boards?"
It's this question that makes me believe the Flyers captain didn't intend to drive Connolly nastily into the corner during the second period of Game 6 between the Sabres and Philadelphia Flyers. But that's exactly what happened as the two battled for position in the corner.
Connolly had the inside position, and as Richards came in after the puck, he wrapped his arm around the Sabre. Instead of fully wrapping him up and riding him into the boards, he pushed off and Connolly took a head-first stumble. He didn't return to the game, although there are reports that it's not a concussion issue. Either way, he's out for Tuesday's Game 7.
The question remaining, then, is will Richards be out as well?
The opinions obviously differ. I'm a Flyers fan and after watching Richards play his entire career, I don't believe he intended to drive Connolly into the boards that way. But of course, Sabres fans are of a different opinion. These are irreconcilable positions, so that's where we need you, fair reader, to come to a truce. Other neutral observers have weighed in and believe we won't see a suspension.
Given all the circumstances: Connolly's injury, the lobbying by the Sabres to the NHL, precedent set so far in these playoffs, etc., will the Flyers captain be sitting in Game 7?