Saturday, December 29, 2007


Allow me to break it down for you, if you haven't already heard....I do like Tarik El-Bashir, but like most newspaper writers he feels the need to repeatedly write one sentence paragraphs, so I've srunched it together a little better.

The winger left Washington's 4-3 overtime loss in Pittsburgh on Thursday
early in the third period after Kris Letang's skate caught him when he checked
the defenseman along the boards. Ovechkin, who entered Friday night as the NHL's second-leading goal scorer with 26, did not return to the game.

Ovechkin went almost immediately to the visitors' locker room at Mellon Arena for medical treatment after suffering the cut. But he said he had to wait for the Penguins' medical staff to finish tending to a Pittsburgh player, and therefore ended up missing the rest of the game. Coach Bruce Boudreau was not pleased by the delay....
"You make your assumptions on that," Boudreau said. "I don't know why. I'm
just told that it took upwards of a half-hour."

Pictured: Bruce Boudreau

#1: Where's your medical staff, Bruce? Were they attending to the MRI of backup goalie Brent Johnson? If that is the case, perhaps it's your priorites that need a little adjusting.

#2: I put in bold the key phrase: the Pittsburgh doctor did not avoid treating Ovechkin, he was needed (and already in the process of) looking at another player (who happened to be a Penguin). Should he drop everything just to attend to the visitor? No. Just as if the doctor was already stiching AO's leg he shouldn't drop everything to treat a Penguin; unless of course there was a catastrophic injury. First come, first serve if you will.

Further, I don't recall a Penguins leaving the game in the 2nd period. The lockerooms are not behind the bench in Pittsburgh so it's clear if you have to leave the ice you just can't duck behind your bench. However I was not at this game so perhaps I didn't see or notice a Penguin off the ice. I think it's possible the doctor was treating the only player who it was very obvious that left the game: the aforementioned Caps goalie.

Truth be told, I lost a little bit of respect for Boudreau for this whole hub-bub. I can understand his frustrations of seeing a lead slip away late in the game and not having your best player around to help but does he really believe the Penguins and their medical staff would intentionally delay treatment to any player (regardless of stature) when they are injured? For shame, Bruce, I thought you were better than that.


JP said...

In fairness to Boudreau, his quote in today's WTimes was "I think we're making a mountain out of a molehill with that."

The quote you used is from the postgame, when he obviously didn't have all the information and was responding after a tough loss.

Hooks Orpik said...

point taken, i hadn't seen boudreau's quote in the times. perhaps i should rescind the harsh remarks about losing respect for him.

i'm still interested to see details such as:
#1 is there only one medic/doctor on duty at NHL games and why wasn't the caps trainer that attended to AO in the dressing room able to apply a couple of stitches to a fairly minor cut
#2 was the pens doc with brent johnson at the MRI station (since i'm still not sure what penguin a doctor would be attending to, since i didn't notice anyone leave the game)

clearly since ovechkin scored 4 goals tonight, he's no worse for wear. which is a good thing. the NHL needs all their stars around. and, obviously, at this point any time ottawa loses it's a moral victory for the rest of the eastern teams.