It shouldn’t surprise anyone that Cody McLeod was suspended for his check to the head of Niklas Kronwall. It fits all the criteria of the modern age of suspensions under the Brendan Shanahan regime.
- The primary point of contact was to the head
- It was from behind
- It resulted in an injury
The only real question was the number of games McLeod would be sitting. It was announced today that McLeod will be out of the Avalanche lineup for 5 games.
Personally, I think it’s about right. It was a dangerous hit and McLeod had time to let up. It’s also the exact kind of hit that the league needs to take a stance on if it’s serious about the concussion problem. I know Wings fans would like a much longer suspension, after all who knows how long this injury will last. The recovered time for a concussion is hard to gauge, and once you get one, it’s easier to get more. That being said, McLeod is a gritty player, but hasn’t been terribly dirty in the past and doesn’t have a history of suspensions. And to be fair, Kronwall did put himself in a vulnerable position, which doesn’t alleviate McLeod’s responsibility to let up, but it’s not entirely his fault either. If he does something similar again? I say, throw the book at him. This is just one of many interesting decisions that Shanahan will have to make this season.