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The Sublime, the Ridiculous, and the Indefensible


The best postseason in sports has, in fact, been tremendous so far. And in addition to the many exceptionally good games — and the Flyers/Penguins series could be one of the best first-round matchups ever — we have the high comedy of Ryan Kesler’s auditions for the Azzurri:

Above: necessary and sufficient grounds for Drew Doughty immediately being awarded the Conn Smythe trophy.

Alas, one blemish on the otherwise great playoff is the failure to suspend Shea Weber. It’s true that it’s the time of the game that is causing people to call for a harsher punishment than might otherwise be merited, but the thing is that the time of the game is relevant. With a lot of time left in a close game, the disincentives created by penalties are important. The hit Bitz got suspended for was more dangerous than the Weber play, but the major penalty he was assessed has a huge impact on the game (as the Kings scored a PP goal that would prove decisive.) But with the game over, suspensions are the only sanction, and it’s a bad precedent to let it slide with a trivial fine. Weber should have at least gotten a game, and Red Wings fans are right to be agitated. I blame Berube’s failure to do any hockey blogging this year…

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