Prior to the NHL All Star Weekend, Calgary Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman hit a referee from behind. The ref got up and seemed to be okay after the collision. Prior to the hit, Wideman was hit from behind by Nashville Predators winger Miikka Salomaki. Wideman appeared to be dazed, and immediately went to the bench holding his arm, but claimed he had a concussion.
Here's my opinion on this.
Wideman hit the referee from behind. Rule 40.3 states an automatic 10 game suspension for abuse of an official. He clearly hit the referee. It was right in front of he Nashville bench, so it was not hard to miss for anyone.
His hit make him the scapegoat to set an example towards the rest of the league. That's why I think he will get more than a ten game suspension- 15. He has to pay the price for his actions, and what better way to satisfy the officials than giving them extra insurance in saying hurting an official is not tolerated by the league.
On an unrelated but sort of related topic, his trade value may have dropped. According to Eklund, Columbus was interested in him earlier this season. But, with this occurring, there are probably no teams interested in the veteran d-man.
What are your thoughts on the hit? The suspension? More to come…