Tri-City’s Brendan Shinnimin Delivers A Vicious Hit-From-Behind (Video)
Hits to the head appear to be getting all the attention in hockey these days, but the most disgusting act of disregard for the safety of other players remains the vicious check-from-behind. Those on the receiving end of such hits are not only susceptible to similar head injuries, resulting from going into the boards head first, but they are also at risk to suffer severe career-ending and life threatening spinal cord injuries.
Thankfully, Josh Nicholls of the Saskatoon Blades was able to escape serious injury after he was sent flying head-first into the end-boards following a brutal check-from-behind from the Tri-City Americans’ Brendan Shinnimin last Wednesday. Nicholls is expected to miss at least one week with a concussion and back injury, while Shinnimin has been handed a 12-game suspension from the WHL for the hit.
Whether 12-games will be enough to send a message across the league remains to be seen, but the job of protecting players should not be placed entirely in the hands of the league. Instead, it is the responsibility of each and every player to maintain a certain level of respect for their opposition while on the ice. Sure, all athletes are expected to compete, but hitting a defenseless player from behind it not competing. Instead, it is more along the lines of assaulting, and if hockey players from all leagues continue to neglect that fact, perhaps we may eventually come to a point where all dangerous hits will be dealt with as acts of assault. After all, just because something takes place within the confines of a hockey arena, does that mean it should not be subject to the full extent of the law?
I have seen individuals prosecuted for far less than this in the past.