When Kadri crosschecked Luke Glendening in a retaliatory act on Saturday night there was a good chance he was going to be looking at a suspension. Kadri being a repeat offender certainly seemed to guarantee it wouldn’t be a short suspension either. Now we officially know the damage…
Toronto’s Nazem Kadri suspended four games for cross-checking Detroit’s Luke Glendening. Video: https://t.co/1JSLEoQ0La
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) April 4, 2016
This was 100% suspension worthy, and the fact that Kadri makes contact with the head should probably leave us feeling lucky that Nazem will be available when the 2016-17 season opens up. This hit does lead to two interesting questions.
1. Is Kadri a dirty player?
Yes. Yes, he is.
It’s okay though. I mean, no one wants to see him head hunting with a stick, but the fact that he’s a talented player who annoys the opposition, tests the limits, draws penalties through embellishment is only a good thing. Most successful teams have this kind of player on the roster, and having one who can play in your top six has been particularly beneficial to teams like Montreal (Gallagher), Boston (Marchand), and Anaheim (Perry).
Kadri and Komarov, with Soshnikov and Leipsic on the way, are going to make the Leafs a very tough team to play in the future, and as long as the head shots disappear from the equation or really any intent to injury, I have to say I’ve been quite excited about the player that Kadri has become.
2. How will this impact the tank?
We already know the answer to this. No Kadri for the rest of the season and one less legitimate top six forward certainly helps the tank a lot. The fact that the Leafs recalled Rich Clune to take Nazem’s roster spot while he takes a forced four game unpaid vacation is an even greater commitment to making sure the Leafs don’t climb in the standings. This is perhaps the last, best shot at going for 30th overall in the standings, but at the very least the Leafs shouldn’t climb out of 29th overall.
No one likes to see someone get hurt and ticket holders for the remaining two home games are probably a little upset, but this was the right call suspension-wise and something that benefits the Leafs. I’m not sure if this is win-win, or just that nothing really matters at this point in the season.