This afternoon, Patrick Kaleta of the Sabres will get on the phone with the NHL, and have a talk about a play from the third period of last night’s shootout loss to the Rangers. At some point during that call, the NHL will suspend him for that play. While the suspension won’t be any more than five games, make no mistake: there will be a suspension. Here is the play:
Even if the play helped spark the Rangers to a win – and even though the player on the receiving end of the hit, Brad Richards, returned to the game – they’re not happy about it, nor should they be. This is a shot cheap enough for Serge Ibaka to watch and go, “Hey, man: not cool.” It’s a shot cheap enough that it had people saying things like:
Patrick Kaleta is a dangerous, irresponsible player. Has been for years. Game doesn’t need him. Be a better place without him.
— Mark Spector Sports (@SportsnetSpec) March 4, 2013
Really, it’s no wonder: it’s not like Kaleta’s new to the “pissing off opponents” game; he’s been gracing lists like this for years. While Deadspin pointed out he’s become somewhat less notorious recently, those days are over now – and given that his reputation preceded him, it’s hard to imagine a scenario in which his forthcoming suspension isn’t more toward the five-game end of the spectrum (although it’ll be fun to watch Ranger fan freakouts if he only gets, say, a game). And with that, we turn to you, dear readers: should Kaleta get the full five? Is five even enough? Will you go all contrarian and wonder if he deserves a suspension at all? The floor is yours.