Brett Connolly Suspended 4 Games

On Sunday night, the NHL announced Blackhawks forward Brett Connolly has been suspended for four games, without pay, for his hit on Dallas Stars forward Tanner Kero on Saturday night.

Connolly was given a major penalty and game misconduct for interference on the play. Kero was taken from the ice on a stretcher and taken to a local hospital.

Under the terms of the CBA and, based on his average annual salary, Connolly will forfeit $70,000; the money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

33 thoughts on “Brett Connolly Suspended 4 Games

  • December 19, 2021 at 7:07 pm

    DOPS is a farce, never suspended before, never done anything to go before DOPS and they drop the bomb on him.

    It wasn’t a good hit, but it shouldn’t be more than 2 games at most, especially for a 1st time offender.

  • December 19, 2021 at 7:23 pm

    This is probably the biggest whiff by NHL dep’t of player safety that I have seen. Connolly had no intention to line up Kero or hurt him. He pulled off the hit if you watch it at full speed, realizing at the last second he was going to hit Kero and Kero didn’t know it was coming. Connolly clearly felt terrible right away and even approached the stretcher leaving the ice to wish Kero well and or apologize: Connolly has zero history of dirty hockey. Kero had no clue where Connolly was which is Kero’s fault for not having his head always on a swivel. The D man could easily have been making a clear off the coaster pass but could also have been passing it to Kero’s glove so Kero could break it out. How would Connally know which it was in that fraction of a second?

    If this were a star player like Toews or Benn, there would have been no penalty or suspension. The NHL continues its double standards under Betman. Player Safety decisions were decent under Shanahan but we are back to Mickey Mouse Betman flunkies making lousy decisions.

    There will be accidents in hockey: This was a pure accident with plenty of marginal blame to go around. Connolly is an accidental sacrificial lamb in this case who deserves way better from the referees and from the NHL.

  • December 19, 2021 at 7:35 pm

    what does anyone expect from bettman? this is the clown who allowed the hawks to clean their own house in the kyle beach scandal without league supervision so why would anyone assume the league’s prodeures for protecting the players would have any legitimacy or make sense.

  • December 19, 2021 at 8:11 pm

    Remind me again what DOPS gave Trouba for taking out Khaira … oh, that’s right – nothing. Their dart board approach is disgustingly laughable. Too bad these fools are in charge of the world’s best professional sport. Just imagine how much better our sport would be if there were competent adults in charge. What a shame.

  • December 19, 2021 at 8:25 pm

    There is an argument here for suspension because Kero had no intentions of playing the puck, nothing intentional but a bad decision that became a dangerous hit.

    Still doesn’t excuse doing nothing to someone for intentionally targeting vulnerable players and taking them out. Their spindoctoring of that is what makes them a farce.

  • December 19, 2021 at 9:45 pm

    Penalizing Connolly for other people’s mistakes, to set a “precedent”, after they let other recent crap slide.
    This was ridiculous.

  • December 19, 2021 at 10:24 pm

    4 games is fine but as others said the Trouba hit should have gotten as much

    The problem lies lies not so much with DOPS but the GMs who basically write these rules – there actually is a rule that will excuse a head shot like Trouba’s and that’s what was invoked in his case by DOPS

    Blame the league for not having a no tolerance policy for head shots not the DOPS for following the rules

  • December 19, 2021 at 10:46 pm

    That pic is something. Guy wearing the Indian Head with a big smile on his face, guy next to him looks to be taking a pic . Not cool.

  • December 19, 2021 at 11:12 pm

    Trouba is laughing after getting nothing at all for the hit .
    And Connolly getting 4 games for quite a similar hit.
    Nothing to understand with those Butman clowns

  • December 20, 2021 at 1:39 am

    Saw the tape. Agree with the interference. Agree should only be 2 games. Agree DOPS are DOPES.

  • December 20, 2021 at 6:41 am

    I just don’t understand this. At first, I thought the difference between the Trouba and Connolly hit was that Khaira had the puck in his feet and the geniuses in the NHL considered that a license to kill.

    Then, I began wondering if the NHL has a ‘defenseless’ player (and I don’t mean Gustaffson) clause they take into consideration.

    The only thing I could find regarding a ‘defenseless’ player applies to Boarding (see below). The odd thing is that it does not appear to apply to Interference. What is utterly absurd is the ‘defenseless’ player language they use in Boarding does not appear in Interference or Charging. So, ‘defenseless’ only applies if you hit the boards. Apparently hitting the ice doesn’t matter.

    I also included the language from Interference for Game Misconduct.

    I think most will agree that hitting a defenseless player in any manner should be illegal. The addition of the defenseless clause to Boarding was instated last summer.

    “41.1 Boarding – A boarding penalty shall be imposed on any player who checks or pushes a defenseless opponent in such a manner that causes the opponent to hit or impact the boards violently or dangerously. The severity of the penalty, based upon the impact with the boards, shall be at the discretion of the Referee.
    There is an enormous amount of judgment involved in the application of this rule by the Referees. The onus is on the player applying the check to ensure his opponent is not in a defenseless position and if so, he must avoid or minimize contact. However, in determining whether such contact could have been avoided, the circumstances of the check, including whether the opponent put himself in a vulnerable position immediately prior to or simultaneously with the check or whether the check was unavoidable can be considered. This balance must be considered by the Referees when applying this rule.”

    “56.5 Interference / Game Misconduct Penalty – When a major penalty is imposed under this rule for a foul resulting in an injury of an opponent, a game misconduct shall be imposed.”

  • December 20, 2021 at 7:15 am

    Who knows what was told to him by King about staying in the lineup, and Connelly was just trying to lay some wood on anyone who got in his way. I feel terrible for Kero and hope that he can recover quickly, but I feel just as badly for Connelly because that is not his game – to be Raffi Torres. If anyone needs to be blamed, it has to be Derek King. Watch when the truth comes out!

  • December 20, 2021 at 7:19 am

    There were only 8 NHL caliber players on the ice for the Icehogs this past weekend. They were in order of talent: (Reichel, Mitchell, Phillips, Regula, Kalynuk, Nylander,Soderholm, and Beaudin). The rest of that roster are AHL lifers! Some guys can do a few things well, but there are major deficiencies in their game.

    Stars: We have only one future star on this team, and his name is Lucas Reichel. But, he comes with one question mark. He really needs to get stronger. Not to bulk up per se, but to gain more functional strength. Because, this kid is explosive, smart, creative, tough, and responsible. The Hawks brass needs to let him play a few more games to get his fitness back after the concussion, but they need to get him out of the Industrial League before he gets hurt for good and bring him up to the big team, because we don’t have a center like him on our current roster!

    NHL Regulars: We have Mitchell, Phillips, Kalynuk, and Regula all ready to play regular NHL minutes. Now, all our “intern” has to do is identify which one of these young defensemen he wants to play 80 games next year. Me, personally I would trade all of DeHaan, Murphy, McCabe, and Gustafson and let these young guys slot in their place alongside the Jones brothers and Stillman after the TDL. These guys will all be better than that guys they would be replacing. I knew Mitchell was playing well and he continued to show it Friday night, but Phillips and Regula really impressed me. Kalynuk is excellent with the puck, but has no one to corral his great outlet passes except Reichel and Nylander.

    Spot in the NHL: I think a few guys have a spot on NHL rosters if they can play in the right system and for the right coach. The two that come to mind are Beaudin and Nylander. They both have NHL abilities, but not a skill-set that the Hawks are currently seeking, or they are blocked by other prospects or our young NHL regulars. Nylander, for example is so much better than the rest of the forward crew on the Icehogs, but he still is not consistent between shifts. There were shifts were he was Patrick Kane, and then there were other shifts were he looked like Citizen Kane. I think he needs to play in a system that fits his skill set and gets him to play with passion. Maybe, a trade to Toronto will be a good thing for him because his brother would kick him in the ass to get him to play with heart, passion, and consistency on every shift! He is talented – no doubt about that!
    Now, Beaudin has taken a back-seat to Kalynuk as our top skilled offensive defensemen, and he seemed content playing second fiddle. He did some good things, but his overall toughness is lacking. In fact, he makes Adam Boqvist look like Milan Lucic. He needs a change of scenery and hopefully an opportunity to play meaningful minutes in the NHL to get his career on track. Otherwise, I could see him becoming this generations Adam Clendening.
    A few other things to point out. Osipov can fight! If he could play, we would not have needed Kurtis Gabriel. Altybakmarian is going to be a stud in the KHL. Jacob Glavas doubles as team equipment manager. The poor kid is so small that he was passing out drinks to his teammates. McLaughlin needs shoulder enhancement surgery. Hardman, tough and gritty, but should never play on anyone’s first line.
    The rest of the guys, if they’re European need to go play in Europe, and if they’re not, they need to finish that degree or start life as a coach because the sooner they realize that the NHL is just a pipe dream, the better chance they have in succeeding in a career in hockey!

    Also, I forgot to add – Soderholm or Soderblom is going to be a fine netminder. He could easily be a solid #2. However, for those of you who thought that the Hawks had a prospect in Evan Barratt, think again! This guy Barratt was the worst player on the ice. Holy shit is his scouting report over-blown. He is so dumb on the ice, and some of his give-a-ways are going to be legendary. Please don’t ever bring this guy up! Please!

    -Tommy Ivan

  • December 20, 2021 at 9:05 am

    Thanks for the report Tommy – nice to hear about Soderblom and I’m still a little hopeful for Nylander

    Looking forward to seeing Reichel in CHI sometime this season

  • December 20, 2021 at 9:06 am

    thanks for the rockford report tommy ivan. very interesting reading. much more enjoyable than the blather that surrounds the varsity these days.

  • December 20, 2021 at 10:00 am

    Good report Tommy, thx. Looking forward to seeing Reichel when his time comes. Hope Soderblom gets some Nhl time in the new year, if a MAF move is in the cards.

    Assuming 12, 77, 38 and Reichel are counted on to be part of a top 9 in next few years. Leaving in the mix to keep around, 8, 13, 17 and 23, with 58, 36, 38, 16, 52 and 86 as more 4th liners at this point anyways. TJ and Connelly just strictly depth who are waiting to move on from. Slaggart ant C. Dach, possibly Kayumov are best options in the system. If 19 and 88 are moved which is their all decisions if it happens, who would be needed in return or with their caproom to make this group whole and be contenders.

    Defense with 4, 5, and 6 locked up, Mitchell looking like he is ready to take next step. With 61 and 82 under control for a few years and others in Rfd. and in the system, not likely a big priority now to make big adds right away.

    With Soderblom, Commesso and Lankinen, seems like a decent base. Another body may be added to impact things there but need to figure out this season, where and how much of an impact is required.

  • December 20, 2021 at 10:12 am

    Tommy, Great job on your Rockford report. To sum it up,the Hawks have plenty of room for NHL prospects they could obtain when they trade Gus,Dehaan, and Fleury. That’s a shame about the downturn of Barratt,s career. He finished strong in college but alot of guys can’t handle the speed of the pro game.

  • December 20, 2021 at 10:23 am

    @Tim, @Wrap, @Ian…

    I wanted to have an open mind about every guy. And, Barratt was one of the guys that I really wanted to see play, and maybe it was a off night, but man he just really disappointed me with his all-around play.

    We really need to beef up our prospect pool up front, but we are solid defensively and in goal. I have to say once again that Phillips and Regula are outstanding prospects! You can tell they are great kids too just by their demeanor on the bench. Kudos to Stan on this one, or Mark Kelley!

  • December 20, 2021 at 10:37 am

    This decision angers me. Trouba went on a two game rampage clearly targeting the head/jaws being the principal point of contact. He was intentional in his actions. And not even a slap on the wrist. Connolly tried to let up. He knew it was going to be bad but it was too late. And he gets suspended but Trouba gets nothing. Where is the consistency in this matter? I liked Kero when he was with the hawks and wish him the best. I would like to see some sort of consistency in these calls.

  • December 20, 2021 at 12:01 pm

    And like that, Powers and Kaplan are reporting that Hawks could be big sellers at the TDL and KD has the go ahead to do whatever it is he’s going to do…’s beginning to sound more and more that KD will be the next GM.

    That’s not good since his on the job training came under Stan.

  • December 20, 2021 at 12:04 pm

    If this warrants a four game suspension then the hit by Trouba should be 10 games or more. This type of justice will ruin the game.

  • December 20, 2021 at 12:18 pm

    $$$ Bill- If KD is going to be a BIG seller- than that is great news… despite Being under SB- it is a step in the right direction versus the Delusional SB thinking this team had a chance.

    It would really be nice to have Cole Sillinger right now + a Pick- to expedite the REBUILD…

    then again Blowman probably passes on Cole and drafts an anorexia stricken d man from europe who has been concussed 6 times… with lot’s of upside

  • December 20, 2021 at 1:43 pm

    Dollar Bill i wonder is big seller meaning moving access or mostly everybody available. The ones who would be rental types are MAF, Dehaan, Gus, Carpenter, maybe Nylander, Delia on expiring contracts. By no means is Lankinen umtouchable but not sure they woild shopping him per se right now. Plus at least 1 of Strome or Kubalik could be gone as well.

  • December 20, 2021 at 2:38 pm

    The Hawks hired an outsider named Mike Forde to evaluate their Hockey Ops and make recommendations for what the best management structure should be

    I don’t know this guy but the I like the idea – if they’re serious about implementing his recommendations I think that would include top down hiring meaning someone not yet hired will make the GM call

    I not as convinced as others that KD is the GM by draft day 2022 – I think Danny is trying to rebuild executive structure as best he can – that wouldn’t include telling a new VP of Hockey Ops who to hire as GM

  • December 20, 2021 at 2:40 pm

    However in the meantime KD has authority to make moves as he sees fit which I think is also the right call

    Honestly I don’t see a new management team until after the season is over

  • December 20, 2021 at 4:10 pm

    @Wrap – I think the operative word is ‘structure’.

    The Blackhawks are doing the wise thing – look for the best business model / structure to emulate. This implies (to me, at least) that they are NOT trying to reinvent the wheel or be trail blazers with an unproven and novel system.

    Structure then Strategy then Staffing, makes sense to me.

  • December 20, 2021 at 6:43 pm

    Excellent report on our prospects Tommy. Thanks for all the detail. One quick question for you: After briefly watching 3 -4 minutes of Gabriel in a hawks sweater , I couldn`t help but think ( from watching a pre-season game ) that Osipov looked to be a really good skater with lots of size as well and a pretty good fighter. Could he have played this role much better than Gabriel for the hawks. Is Osipov any worse than Gabriel in any regard or facet of the game. Thanks in advance !

  • December 20, 2021 at 9:17 pm

    Jim Ross could be a contract issue too, Osipov is under Ahl deal and would require being signed to an elc deal to be called up. Whereas with Gabriel, just get his contract by trading Krys, a contract they don’t want, rather than using an elc on an enforcer.

  • December 20, 2021 at 9:40 pm

    Thanks as well Ian. Makes sense for sure. How old is Osipov now. I remember being impressed with his skating. The hawks seem to keep him around on an AHL deal, perhaps to protect their kids down there.
    Maybe he`s an absolute liability out there even in limited minutes, I`m not sure. . I`m curious to see if there`s potentially something there as an enforcer for the hawks. Either King or Davidson must see a need here because they bothered to bring Gabriel in for what seems like that reason.
    Thanks again. Jim

  • December 20, 2021 at 10:22 pm

    Jim Ross, you may be onto something, Osipov turned 25 in October, so it is possible with Gabriel an ufa they sign Osipov for next year. This is his 1st year playing forward, maybe they want him to play a full year in Rfd. as forward first too. Then next year he doesn’t need an elc anymore, so could fill that void with still a couple of years of rfa controll left.

  • December 20, 2021 at 11:49 pm

    You al know how l feel on suspensions. For every hit head contact there should be something and it be accordingly. They a f ing disgrace and have been for long time with suspension hits. It should be very simple.

    Like a math time table simple but they can’t ever get it right. Same thing for other sports though even with instant replay can’t get call right every time and I mean most of time. Only tennis 3D review is perfect for reviews donot even need refs just replay it on scoreboard and it shows in or out. Simple.

    Math times table chart for suspensions. They should look into it. A kindergartner could get suspensions more correctly. And I a, not botching about this one here just saying they disgrace. Look at Hoss and even Crow head kneed. Still waiting for someone to end malkins career because that’s what he deserves. What a piece of

  • December 21, 2021 at 7:00 am

    @Jim Ross

    Osipov was decent in the games I watched. He works hard enough and digs in the corners well, but he really doesn’t have any above average hockey skills to speak of except his fists. Great KO and held the guy up from hitting his head on the ice, which was nice. I would have brought up Osipov, but King knows his skill-set and they did not call him up. I think that speaks volumes. It’s not like he was going to play more than 7-10 minutes a game. So, whatever the reason that he was not called up, I think this ends Osipov’s tenure with the Hawks organ-i-zation!

    But, be really excited for Reichel, Phillips, Regula, and Kalynuk.

  • December 21, 2021 at 2:40 pm

    Thanks again Tommy. Much appreciated.


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