Originally written on NorthWest Sports Beat  |  Last updated 2/20/13

DALLAS - APRIL 15: Jannik Hansen #36 of the Vancouver Canucks works the puck in front of the Dallas Stars bench during the first overtime period of game three of the 2007 NHL Western Conference Quarterfinals at American Airlines Center on April 15, 2007 in Dallas, Texas. The Canucks defeated the Stars 2-1 in the first overtime. (Photo by Layne Murdoch/Getty Images)
That had to hurt. The Vancouver Canucks and Chicago Blackhawks played to an entertaining and hard-fought 4-3 shootout final on Tuesday, but Jannik Hansen’s hit to the head of Marian Hossa was what had fans talking after the latest rivalry instalment. Early in the third period Hansen found himself behind Hossa battling for a puck overhead when in reaching up for possession he struck Hossa in the back of the helmet, knocking him down to the ice. As the two came closer together Hansen appeared to reach for the puck but connected with a solid elbow to the head of Hossa, knocking him out of the game. The injury was oddly familiar two two previous injuries to Chicago players. First of all Hossa was hit directly in front of the Blackhawks’ bench, in the same spot Raffi Torres injured him last season. In addition, the puck flies above Hossa and Hansen much like it did when Duncan Keith caught Daniel Sedin with a vicious elbow last year. Was this a subtle case of headshot payback, or was Hansen simply getting aggressive battling for a loose puck? Jannik Hansen understands hockey is a dangerous game. While the NHL is often guilty of assessing punishment suitable to the result rather than the crime, the Hansen hit on Hossa could fall under a much more logical hockey premise. Players are accountable for all parts of the body as well as the stick, and Hansen clearly struck Hossa in the back of the head.Reasonable hockey minds will argue endlessly over whether Jannik Hansen deserves a suspension. Without any history of play worthy of a supplementary discipline, he could escape any potential meeting without missing additional games, but is that justice for another seemingly concussed player? Showing no malicious intent, Hansen may not deserve to be suspended for what unfortunately could be a hockey play. The NHL shouldn’t assume he was able to make a split-second decision to take an open head shot, and without any previous incident they have no reason to believe so. If two NHL referees didn’t see the play as worthy of initial punishment, will Brendan Shanahan be willing to over-rule them? The NHL’s long history of suspending to the injury could come into play with any potential Hansen suspension, but a lack of previous disciplinary action will make any assumption of guilt fairly difficult. Regardless of any decision pending from the NHL, the rivalry between the Canucks and Blackhawks cranked up another notch on Tuesday. Vancouver’s late comeback attempt to dampen what became a sombre night for the Blackhawks after Hossa left the ice, and with only one regular season matchup the stage is set for April 22nd at Rogers Arena. Tuesday’s win for the Blackhawks evened the season series between these two bitter rivals, and extended Chicago’s record regulation point streak to 16 games. CLICK HERE TO CHECK OUT THE CANUCKS CLUBHOUSE TODAY AT NWSPORTSBEAT!
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Utah beats Michigan 24-17, ruins Jim Harbaugh’s debut

Patriots keep Tom Brady excitement close to vest

Wayne happy about Brady verdict: 'That's my quarterback'

Markieff Morris on Twitter: ‘My future will not be in Phoenix’

Jonathan Kraft on asking for draft picks: 'Never say never'

Redskins charge non-season ticket holders $50 to use will call

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Arthur Blank on Roger Goodell: ‘Change may be appropriate’

Belichick gives typical reply to question about Brady's freedom

Goodell not attending season opener at Gillette Stadium

Jakub Voracek will donate $1,000 for every point he scores

Dwayne Bowe reportedly in danger of being cut by Browns

Slava Voynov taken into custody by U.S Immigration

Trevone Boykin’s Heisman bid off to rocky start against Minnesota

Michigan lost their opener, but showed signs of improvement

Aaron Rodgers on Brady ruling: ‘It’s a good day for the players’

Jim Harbaugh uses Seahawks play card and Seattle loves it

First drive of Jim Harbaugh Era in Michigan ends in interception

Redskins fan who named son after RG3: ‘I don’t regret it at all’

Freshmen to watch in Week 1 of college football

Early returns on Manny Machado, MLB shortstop

Judge Berman offered free coffee for life

Conor McGregor insults Jose Aldo, plans move to lightweight

Angry Indy columnist: Don't fall for 'Deflategate magic trick'

Staubach calls Romo 'one of the best quarterbacks in the league'

Utah forbade Harbaugh-themed bus from campus

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The Gospel Of Harbaugh prepares for its ultimate test of faith

Meet the Utah Utes, the pluckiest program in college football

Iman Shumpert will name daughter Iman Shumpert Jr.

Dallas company celebrates Romo with DirecTV 'crownies'

Top 10 storylines for Week 4 of the NFL preseason

Matt Williams is still hopelessly married to the idea of the closer’s role

Five unique CFB games to watch this weekend

Be careful what you wish for, Jay Gruden

Ryan taking leap of faith with Bills

Top 10 storylines for Week 1 of college football season

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker