David Savard of the Columbus Blue Jackets is the the latest NHLer to be fined for slashing this season. Yet even with the crackdown on slashes, the difference between a dangerous needless slash and a routine slash gone wrong is as murky as ever.
Savard and Florida Panther Vincent Trochek were part of a puck battle cluster beside the Columbus net. Savard clearly raised his stick and smashed down on the upper part of Trochek’s shaft with two hands. Trochek immediately pulled his hand back in apparent pain and took himself out of the play.
I spent a couple minutes looking for an angle to actually see the contact with the hands. I obviously ended up finding one on this tweet from hockeyfights.com, but really what does it matter? That was a solid chop and it was so high up the stick that Savard ought to have known he was highly increasing the chances of hitting the hands even if he missed. That’s all that matters.
Tough Call: The fine isn’t enough. Under my suspension scale I would have fined David Savard of the Columbus Blue Jackets four games for slashing.