Reckless Subban and NHL DOPS costs Blais his season

Published November 16, 2021 at 2:53 PM

Sammy Blais seemed positioned to have the best season of his career as he appeared posed to play a prominent role in the New York Rangers playoff push. That is until he ran into PK Subban Sunday night, while there are some who feel this was mere incidental contact it's fair to assume at this point PK is not afforded the benefit of the doubt.

When Subban's right skate drug across Blais' leg it was clear to see Blais was in trouble. His knee folded up underneath him and he was obviously in a lot of pain.

Today the Rangers announced Blais' season was over as he'd been placed on LTIR with a torn ACL. The timeline for Blais recovery was expected to be 6-8 months, which pending a long playoff run would put the Rangers well into the off-season.

The real issue at this point is the NHL Department of Player Safety's refusal to hold Subban accountable for his reckless skate work. This would represent the 4th incident this season resulting in some form of slewfoot/dangerous trip by Subban.

The first on Ryan Reaves:

The second on Milan Lucic:

The third on Trevor Zegras:

After the third slewfoot/trip the NHL fined Subban $15,000 after a hearing with the league.

Now I'm not saying Blais' injury was entirely preventable, but if Subban's actions had been appropriately held accountable for his previous trips there would be far fewer questions surrounding this incident. Accident or not going forward PK Subban needs to be aware of his surrounding, where his skates are at all times and that his actions have consequences.

The NHL needs to be aware that they have the ability to police this sort of situation much better be protecting players when infractions do occur. The NHL's failures could also lead to some further issues down the road because it's hard to believe PK won't be a marked man the next time these two teams meet.
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