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Follow up: Armstrong’s elbow to Matthieu Perreault

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Last night, I posted about Colby Armstrong’s forearm shiver to the jaw of Washington’s Mathieu Perreault. I judged my opinion on seeing the hit live and with one replay, and questioned whether the hit would fall under the NHL’s new ‘blind side’ hits to the head rule.

After seeing many replays of the hit since then, it’s obvious that is not the case. Despite Perreault turning up ice, Armstrong certainly came at him from a straight-ahead direction. You can see video of the hit here.

That does not change the fact, however, that Armstrong’s hit was dangerous and highly illegal. This is not a case of Perreault skating with his head down and then getting rocked, but of Armstrong needlessly leading with his hand and forearm for what should have been a big open-ice hit.

Perreault attempted to dodge the hit at the very last instant, which contributed to the hit looked pretty bad. That doesn’t change the fact that Armstrong’s hit was illegal and he should face supplemental discipline for the hit. He was not penalized specifically for the hit, yet was penalized for his altercation with Shaone Morrisonn of the Capitals, who instantly went after Armstrong in defense of his teammate.

So, for one I apologize for jumping the gun a bit on calling it a ‘blind side hit’, which it is obviously not after seeing the replays. I stand by the fact that this is a hit that should land Armstrong a suspension, if the NHL is anywhere near as serious as they claim to be about dangerous hits to the head.