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The Apology - The Suspension

Cock Throppled

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Oct 1, 2003
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First- the apology. This event had all the earmarks of a PR firm. From the spiffy suit (the one he'll wear in court?), to the beautiful, trophy wife standing stoically beside him to the tearful remarks the whole thing was a staged event to try to engender sympathy for the perpetrator. "I didn't mean to hurt Moore", excuse me, his ONLY intent was to hurt him - just not to the degree it happened. Bertuzzi is one of the biggest and strongest players in the league. He put everything into the punch. It was like a heavyweight boxer hitting somone. "I'm not a mean-spirited player" - hello, Todd - your whole personality is built on being surly, vindictive and mean. A hard man who likes to dish out punishment and who carries the swagger of being mad at the world with him wherever he goes. Having said that, I really believe he was crying and was apologetic and is sorry for what he did. But, is he really more concerned for Moore, or for the deep, deep shit he has landed himself and his teammates in and the loss of millions? Why didn't he speak after the event? Moore had the guts to fave the media after the hit on Naslund. Bertuzzi hid in the trainer's room and was spirited away by Canucks staff. Why didn't he say anything the next day? Sorry, Todd - the victim is Moore and hockey - not you.

The supension - for the NHL it was stiff, but the NHL lives in a dream world where they think the problems of the game come down to the size of goalie pads, not their culture of acceptance of thuggery.

I've just listened to Brian Burke give a statement and words fail me. The stunning stupidity of his comments and the blindness to his and Crawford's responsibilty, as well as Bertuzzi's are mind-boggling. He, as usual blames the media for the whole situation. The man is a moron, and it's easy to see how Bertuzzi thought what he did was acceptable in this environment.
 

Kev

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CT you are sure welcome to your opinion but its very clear you don't know jack shit about hockey. Every club in the NHL would love to have Todd in there line up. Colorado would sign him tomorrow in a heartbeat.
Todd's apology was from the heart. Everyone could see it but you. You should stick to watching curling.

As stated by Burke scouts look for players who have that intensity like Bertuzzi, and when they see it there eyes light up. Its a given that Bertuzzi can be a lose cannon. But if you play the game at an elite level with high emotion there is a very slim line that you can't cross. Bertuzzi plays at that level every game, but this time he crossed it and is going to pay. To much as far as i'm concerned.

Tomorrow, next week, next season, we'll see it again. This ruling hasn't changed a thing. Its nothing more than a bandaid fix.

I wish Steve Moore the best too. --- Kev
 

Sir Woodster

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Seasonal suspension isn't enough - how about lifetime suspension and criminal charges - there is no excuse for what he did and if any of us did that to someone on the street we'd be looking at the world from a cage...
 

williewheeler

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Woodster, respectfully, I have to disagree. While it is true that if you or I did this on the street, we'd be looking at the world through stripes - if only because we don't have the wherewithall to pay a fine like the Bertuzzi's in the NHL - the basic difference between the street and the hockey arena or football field or baseball diamond is a fundamental defence called "consent".

In law, your right to swing your fist ends at the tip of my nose. Anything more is a battery (the civil term when the force is actually applied, rather than threatened). However, if you and I get into a punch up at a pub, we are deemed to a certain point (short of causing permanent disability to one another) to have consented to the battery. The same is true criminally, and consent is one defence to a charge of assault. It is assumed that professional sports players have "consented" to a certain level of violence that would not be tolerated out on the street.

The question is, did Moore "consent" to the level of violence perpetrated on his person by Bertuzzi? The answer has definitely got to be a resounding "Hell no!" This is where the NHL fails by merely suspending the guy. As far as I'm concerned, he should never play again, and face criminal charges for aggravated assault causing bodily harm. His apology? Give me a break! I've seen criminals truly remorseful and ball like a baby in front of the judge - it doesn't mean they wouldn't do it again given the same circumstances!

We can discuss the Canucks liability for what happened another time....
 

The Happy Tapper

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Jul 28, 2002
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Horseshit

I'm a hockey fan until the end, but this incident/event has crossed so many boundaries and everyone has an opinion on it, which makes it extremely difficult to put into perspective.

I've actually stopped talking about all of this with people who aren't hockey fans or who don't know much about hockey/have never played hockey. If you fall into these catagories, your views on how the NHL handles it's affairs doesn't hold much water.

Learn the history of the game and you'll see that what Bertuzzi did isn't that far from the norm of violent events in hockey. You'll also see the NHL covering up many of their current problems by making a scapegoat out of Bertuzzi. Yes he deserves to be punished, but how the NHL handled this situation/suspension, as well as numerous others, reeks like shit and leaves very little to be desired.

It's happenstance that Bertuzzi & the Canucks were involved. The NHL has a large amount of problems, many of which they choose to sweep under the carpet. For this incident, they chose to make an example out of Bertuzzi to appease an uninterested American market rather than actually assess the incident and proceed within the rules.

If the NHL can villify Bertuzzi & the Canucks' actions, then they better be prepared to share culpability if this ever goes to a criminal trial because they are just as responsible for creating & condoning this type of environment as any player or team is. If you read/listen between the lines, this is exactly the position the NHL doesn't want to be in and is avoiding completely, yet they feel they can retroactively punish the Canucks for heat-of-the-moment comments made after Moore's hit on Naslund. If they punish Vancouver, they should also punish Clarke & Hitchcock in Philly. If their language and actions after the Havlat incident are not perceived as abhorrently premeditated, then how can any that the Canucks made be?
 
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Cock Throppled

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To Kev and BBL I do know about hockey and I do know the line crossed here was not all Bertuzzi's fault and he is sincere about the apology. One thing I haven't heard is - are steroids involved? As I've stated before I know Bertuzzi and my dealings with him have always been unpleasant. He has chosen to present himself that way on and off the ice and maybe that has come back to bite him in the ass. The culture the NHL fosters is the root problem and they won't do anything until someone is killed. Maybe this is why the courts should get involved. Bertuzzi was trying to goad Moore into a fight and it went too far, but he also thought that hitting him in the head and starting a fight was the manly thing to do and he was standing up for his friend and all the other bullshit that over-testosteroned young guys use to defend their irrational actions. Every sport has rules and when an infraction occurs there are penalties handed out. Hockey is the only team sport that sanctions fighting. I'm not even saying fighting should be taken out of hockey, but make it a real penalty. You fight and you're tossed from that game and the following game. Any hits to the head - two game suspension - doubled for each subsequent infraction. At least that would speed up the game, take away the stupid wrestle around- and throw two punches- go to the penalty box scenes we see over and over. It might actually allow the skilled players like Naslund and Iginla to flourish and take away the Ruutus and Lemieuxs. Same with high sticking - players aren't going to keep getting their sticks up in someone's face if they get booted. These guys aren't stupid. A few games sat out with no pay and most will quickly understand the rules. The NHL just chooses to not crack down.
Oh, and Kev I don't know what games you've been watching, but I'm at almost every game and sure haven't seen Bertuzzi play with a high level of emotion in many of them this year. I also agree with Lurker that the league has to start fining coaches and players for their threats.
 

capt_canada13

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To all hockey fans.......I think we have to look at the big picture. The game has gone to the dummies who can write the biggest check to buy who ever and whomever and that includes that moron Bettman. Bertuzzi was wrong and got a just penalty except for the open end ass kissing he has to do to Bettman. Why do the NHL take a look at themselves and see why the game is in such disaray. Example: Why is it that a defenseman can abuse a forward in front of the net by slashing or cross-checking but when the forward pushes off to create space he gets a penalty. How does the instigator rule protect the good players. (Moores hit on Nasland). What about the obstruction penalties, good for the first 2 months of the season but there is more clutching and grabbing than there is at a Vegas brothel. Too many teams not enough talent and shitty refereeing causes angry players.

Now for all you ragging on Burke, who else out there is making money for their team in a small Canadian market with Canadian Dollars and with the financial constraints he has to deal with. If the government would be half as fiscally responsible as Burke our Province and Country would not be in this position. Who would you rather have Glen "I'll sell my mother for a buck" Sather.

I've said my piece...................
 

sirlickheralot

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Mar 11, 2003
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Re: Horseshit

Lurker said:
Learn the history of the game and you'll see that what Bertuzzi did isn't that far from the norm of violent events in hockey. You'll also see the NHL covering up many of their current problems by making a scapegoat out of Bertuzzi. Yes he deserves to be punished, but how the NHL handled this situation/suspension, as well as numerous others, reeks like shit and leaves very little to be desired.

It's happenstance that Bertuzzi & the Canucks were involved. The NHL has a large amount of problems, many of which they choose to sweep under the carpet. For this incident, they chose to make an example out of Bertuzzi to appease an uninterested American market rather than actually assess the incident and proceed within the rules.
There is some speculation that the smear campaign and harshness of Bertuzzi's penalty is even more sinister than it seems on the surface. Before they even handed down the penalty there was some speculation that the penalty would be especially harsh to reduce Vancouvers chances of even making it to the Stanley Cup finals. The NHL broadcast rights expire after this season and the prospect of an all Canadian Stanley Cup final terrifies Bettmen and the league as it really affects ratings and therefore hurts bidding on a new contract for broadcast rights.
 

James

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Ahh, finally someone else agrees on the TV thing. Bettman is scared shitless of Canucks vs Toronto or Ottawa, and either one was (still is) possible. Nobody except the retirees in Florida and Arizona, and maybe the hard core (Detroit, Minnesota) NHL markets, would watch.

With Bertuzzi suspended, the Canucks chances are diminished considerably. Which is good for the Detroits and Colorados of the league.

If the uniforms were switched, and Bertuzzi was wearing an Avalanche shirt, he would have seen somewhere in the 10-20 game range. And Granato would have been screaming that 20 was to much.

With Bertuzzi suspended for an "open ended" period, he is ineligible for selection by Team Canada and the World Cup. Which boosts the chances of the team from south of the border considerably.

Like him or loath him, he is skilled player who can, when he plays the way he should, dominate a game.
 

sirlickheralot

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James said:
With Bertuzzi suspended, the Canucks chances are diminished considerably. Which is good for the Detroits and Colorados of the league.
Speaking of Detroit and Colorado and the double standard that exists in this game the Claude Lemieux/Kris Draper incident is a perfect example. Claude Lemieux cheap shots Draper with his back turned as he tries to leave the ice, breaking his nose and jaw against the board. Draper could have just as easily broken his neck but Lemieux gets a measely 2 games because its the playoffs and the league doesn't want to hurt Colorado too badly.

Lemieux was known as a dirty players throughout his career but to many Colorado fans the guy is a hero. There are plenty of Lemieux fan sites and the Draper incident is blown off as no big deal. I'm sure if Bertuzzi ever ended up in an Avalanche uniform he would be quickly forgiven and the fans would start to think this incident was overblown.
 

Sir Woodster

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Willie.... Willie... we can debate the relative merits of the consent defence like we have debated other fine points of the law in the past... Such a debate is really for the Law Review or some Student trying to make some professor impressed with his or her legal abilities...

My point is the same as Lurker - "I'm a hockey fan until the end, but this incident/event has crossed so many boundaries..."

While Bertuzzi will certainly pay in some manner - perhaps we as society need to put a line in the the sand or on the ice and say, we're tired of such things.....

Whatever happened to hockey being a "Gentleman's Game" - it was when I played eons ago but that aspect is certainly lost...

Just my 20 Cents worth (that's the inflated value of 2 cents) :)
 

sunnysideup

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For what it's worth

Three times he said "I'm sorry for what happened out there". Once he said "I'm sorry for what transpired out there". No - I don't think there is any meaningful difference in these statements. But not once did he say he was sorry for what he did. Do you think the lawyers had something to do with the way this was worded?
 

The Happy Tapper

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Jul 28, 2002
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Sir Woodster said:
My point is the same as Lurker - "I'm a hockey fan until the end, but this incident/event has crossed so many boundaries..."
Hey Woody

I think you've mixed up what I meant. From what you said above, it sounds like you think that I think this incident crossed a line, or the line, or many lines, into the realm of unacceptable. This is not true. I've seen incidents worse than this one in the NHL before. Bertuzzi's punch, in the whole scheme of things, was not really that bad. The resulting pileup/meelee/lynching was.

What I mean by saying that the event has crossed so many boundaries is that everyone and their dog seems to have an opinion on 'the punch'. Anywhere I go, it's on TV and people are talking. At work, I can't get away from someone asking for my opinion before giving their vastly-uninformed two cents. People who love, like, watch, play, teach, ref, hate, loathe, don't watch or don't care about hockey are putting forward their opinions. To relay the unwritten rules and mores of the modern-day NHL to the uninformed is impossible in two minutes or ten minutes. The plethora of opinion makes it hard to debate the subject with anyone but the experienced hockey fan.
 

Sir Woodster

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Lurker.... I used your words like the press corps uses words... and I am a very long way from being uninformed - you have the right to your opinion and I have the right mine... and I'll defend your right to have that opinion even tho I don't agree with it.

... and I DO THINK that this event is completely unacceptable and tarnishes the game...

'nuff said.
 

Kev

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Lurker said:
Hey Woody

I think you've mixed up what I meant. From what you said above, it sounds like you think that I think this incident crossed a line, or the line, or many lines, into the realm of unacceptable. This is not true. I've seen incidents worse than this one in the NHL before. Bertuzzi's punch, in the whole scheme of things, was not really that bad. The resulting pileup/meelee/lynching was.

What I mean by saying that the event has crossed so many boundaries is that everyone and their dog seems to have an opinion on 'the punch'. Anywhere I go, it's on TV and people are talking. At work, I can't get away from someone asking for my opinion before giving their vastly-uninformed two cents. People who love, like, watch, play, teach, ref, hate, loathe, don't watch or don't care about hockey are putting forward their opinions. To relay the unwritten rules and mores of the modern-day NHL to the uninformed is impossible in two minutes or ten minutes. The plethora of opinion makes it hard to debate the subject with anyone but the experienced hockey fan.
Amen Lurker...except i would change on thing and that would be "experienced hockey fan." to "experienced hockey player." Coach potato fans can't asertain whats going on out there unless they have been there. Many of these contributers to these posts haven't even seen ice except in there highball glass yet they have it all figured out. Those that know the game from the inside now that these ones speak with ignorance.

An analogy is like watching Tiger Woods hit a golf ball. Unless you have hit one you can't appreciate the mechanics involved, or the artistry. (I still think golfing is dorky, but very skilled.)

You really have to play hockey from a young age 'like i have' to appreciate that what we are seeing in the NHL is something that is taugh since we first start playing. "NO" not hitting someone from behind, but to keep your level of play at a very high intensity. If your really good you can maintain that intensity/emotion through out the game but in doing so once in awhile 'you will' over step the boundaries. 99.9 % of the time it only means a penalty, but other times like one, its 12 games and the playoffs. But thats the game of hockey we are going to get that rare player that crosses that fine line. The ruling against Bertuzzi won't do anything to change the way our youth is taught today. Its only going to be matter of time when we will see it all over again............unfortuately. --- Kev
 

sirlickheralot

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Sir Woodster said:
Whatever happened to hockey being a "Gentleman's Game" - it was when I played eons ago but that aspect is certainly lost...

Just my 20 Cents worth (that's the inflated value of 2 cents) :)
When exactly was this mythical era when hockey was a gentleman's game and incidents like this didn't happen.

Was it in the 1930's when a player like Eddie Shore hit Ace Bailey from behind fracturing his skull and ending his career. Perhaps it was in the 1950's when a gentleman like Rocket Richard beat Hal Laycoe over the head then turned around and punched out the linesman. Perhaps it was in the 1960's when two gentlemen named Wayne Maki and Ted Green had a duel with their sticks that left Ted Green with fractured skull requiring 3 surgeries and temporarily paralized. Maybe it was the 1970's when gentlemen like Bobby Clark and Broadstreet Bullies made a name for themselves through their brutality. The consumate gentleman Bobby Clark even bragged in the Summit series after deliberately injuring Valeri Kharlamov, "If I hadn't learned to lay on a two-hander once in a while, I'd never have left Flin Flon."

Those who argue that hockey is just now getting violent and the Bertuzzi incident wouldn't have occured in the past either don't know anything about hockey or are looking at the past through rose coloured glasses. To make Bertuzzi out as the scapegoat for giving hockey a bad reputation is blatantly unfair.
 

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Aug 30, 2003
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Enough of all this bickering. We all have our opinions. I agree with some points by some individuals and also disagree with some points from the same individuals.

At this time maybe some of you should settle this out on the ice...anybody for a game of ice hockey. Better yet maybe we could get a game of street hockey happening. Kids in my old cul-da-sac still have pick up games on sunny days.
 

Sir Woodster

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sirlickheralot - Hockey has had a violent side to it since the game was created... just because the violence has been part of the game doesn't make it right...

Bertuzzi is not being made a scapegoat - he is just the unfortunate rube who brought the violence to the headlines yet again - and he'll pay a price for that...

Perhaps if those who coached the game over time had paid more attention to skills rather turning a blind eye to the violence we'd have just an enjoyable game today but without having to scrape blood off the ice...
 

The Happy Tapper

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Jul 28, 2002
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Hey Kev, upon a later read of my post, I realized I actually meant player instead of fan. I've been playing hockey constantly for 20 of my 27 years. To experience our system from the Tyke level all the way up to the Rep level in bantam/midget and then to many various Rec levels is quite a journey. Thanks for pointing that out.

Sir Lickheralot, thanks for pointing out just a few of the many incidents in the history of hockey. Eventually I thought I might have to start posting some summaries of incidents from other eras.

Woody, I think our coaches have a great handle on the skills of our players, as evidenced by the fact that Canadians have always made up the majority of NHL hockey players and have turned out to be the greatest players of all time, and that's not because we have such a large population base to work with. Other countries have played this game just as long as we have with a vastly larger population base, which creates a larger talent pool to nuture and select from than Canada would have. I don't know many Americans or Europeans that have exceled so greatly under their coaching that they could cement their names with the greats in the annals of NHL history.

Off the top of your head, before the Bertuzzi punch, can you tell me last time we had to scrape blood off the ice?

Anyways, that's the last I'm posting on this subject.
 

Sir Woodster

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I do think our coaches have a great handle on the skills of the players and Lurker, you are right - we have turned out some of the world's greatest hockey players...

Incidents like sirlickheralot points out should not be tolerated and participants must receive serious sanctions... there is no excuse for any of those events or the now infamous Bertuzzi punch...

And that's the last I'll say about it....
 
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