Henrik Sedin has been knocked out of action for a few weeks after suffering an injury on a hit from the New York Islanders’ Mikhail Grabovski, and the Vancouver Canucks are not too happy about it. Canucks analyst John Garrett went so far as to say in a fiery column on the team website that the league does not treat either Henrik or Daniel Sedin with the respect they deserve as star players.
The Canucks took it a step farther when they tweeted a link to the column asking if there is a league conspiracy against the Sedins.
Garrett’s argument hinges on his assertion that the league does not punish players who go too far with hits on the Sedins the same way as it does with other star players. He listed a series of questionable hits over the years on the Sedins that went unpunished by the league. It seems Grabovski’s hit on Henrik Sedin was the final straw. Grabovski was not punished by the NHL, and multiple reports claimed that because the hit came in the first period of Sunday’s game and Grabovski was ejected, Grabovski had already served his time for the crime.
Mikhail Grabovski hits Henrik right in the numbers and runs him into the boards. He gets five and a game and nothing more. The league says that because it happened so early in the game it is like a one game suspension. The refs called a roughing penalty on Matt Bartkowski without taking an Islander off so the punishment was a game misconduct and a three minute penalty. Grabovski is a third line guy with the Islanders and missed two periods for taking out Henrik Sedin for that game and at least three more.
Are you kidding me?
The league says they are trying to sell their stars, well then treat them like stars not like second-class citizens.
It is rare to see an NHL team’s official Twitter account call out the league for a conspiracy, but if the Canucks’ front office is upset by the league’s treatment of the Sedin’s, it’s a smart move. The editorial officially comes from a team analyst, not a GM or coach who could be fined for that type of criticism against the league.
But is there a conspiracy against the Sedins? That’s a different question.
Arielle Aronson writes about the NHL for FOX Sports. You can follow her on Twitter @aharonson28.