We learned earlier on Tuesday that Boston Bruins forward Nathan Horton will miss the remainder of the Stanley Cup Finals after being crushed by a late hit from Vancouver Canucks defenseman Aaron Rome. The NHL has made sure that Rome will miss the same amount of time, suspending him four games for the hit, which took place in Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals.
NHL Senior Vice President of Hockey Operations Mike Murphy made the calling, saying that two factors were considered in the decision.
"The hit by Rome was clearly beyond what is acceptable in terms of how late it was delivered after Horton had released the puck and it caused a significant injury," Murphy said in a press release.
Rome also was handed a five minute major penalty for interference and a game misconduct on the play.
There's no doubt it was a late hit, and there's also no doubt that it caused significant injury. Horton will miss the rest of the playoffs, and now Rome will as well, but the loss of Horton is still much more painful to the Bruins than the loss of Rome is to the Canucks. That's especially true if Dan Hamhuis is able to come back in the series.
We could analyze this decision all day and night long, but really, there's nothing to be gained by doing it. The NHL has no consistency when it comes to these decisions. Precedent means nothing, and hopefully that changes next year when Brendan Shanahan takes over this department.
Until then, it'll continue to be a joke -- that's something we can agree upon whether or not we agree with this suspension or not.
The Stanley Cup Finals are ongoing, as the Vancouver Canucks battle the Boston Bruins. Stick with this StoryStream for full coverage of Game 3. For coverage on the Finals, stick with our Stanley Cup Finals hub, our Canucks blog, Nucks Misconduct, and our Bruins blog, Stanley Cup of Chowder.