Ballard Injured; Was it a dirty play?

There are only two certainties in life; death and taxes. And, well, the Canucks defence getting injured.

Keith Ballard was the latest casualty of a depleted blue line that already boasts stud D-man Alex Edler. However, many fans of the Canucks, including Canucks GM Mike Gillis, felt that the play that got Ballard injured, was in fact a dirty one.

If you didn't see the play, Senators forward Milan Michalek and Ballard were chasing the puck behind the Canucks net on Monday night. Ballard delivered a nice hit on Michalek, and then the two continued the chase to the corner. Thats when Michalek and Ballard got tangled up. Some would define it as "tangled", other, more passionate fans would describe it as a slewfoot. Ballard went down awkwardly on his knee, and by awkwardly, I mean, in excruciating pain.
Michalek was not penalized on the play.

Usually, hits, or plays defined as dirty will get league wide recognition, a few statements from each player, and an investigation. None of this has really happened so far, other than Mike Gillis calling it a dirty play. From a journalists perspective, it did look like a cheap shot; a play where Michaelk knew exactly what he was doing but didn`t hesitate to do it.

I could get up on my soapbox at this point and complain, where is the respect for the players we once had? Really, Michaelk must have known that Ballard could be seriously injured, and he didn't seem to care.

Ballard may be up 2 to 4 weeks with what is being called an MCL sprain, and thats unfortunate.
What's more unfortunate is the NHL once again doing nothing to protect it's players. Daniel Paille gets 4 games for a head shot; Milan Michalek gets nothing (at this point) for almost destroying Keith Ballards knee. You stay classy Colin Campbell.

So, what does everyone else think? Was it a cheap shot? Are Canuck fans just being biased and too sensitive? Does this slew foot deserve a suspension? Your thoughts are welcome


George Prax's picture

I think you're overreacting here. To me it really did look like Michalek got tangled up and unwittingly grabbed on to Ballard for balance. I doubt Michalek would purposely take out Ballard's knee like that, that would be ridiculous. Just an unfortunate incident. He's no Matt Cooke Tongue

And it hardly almost "destroyed" his knee, it's a mild MCL sprain lol. Those look a lot worse than they are. I had the exactly same injury last year (obviously different circumstances) and the pain on a knee sprain is excruciating but it goes away quickly once you stabilize the knee and an awkward stretch like that one makes it look worse than it is in most cases. 2 to 4 weeks in nothing. two times six months for Andrei Markov lol