Maybe I'm just a dimwitted southerner, but here's something I don't get. I would appreciate any help in this matter.
Chris Simon is still suspended, right? When he lost control against Ryan Hollweg last March, he was suspended for the remainder of the 2007 season and the playoffs. The length of the suspension was supposed to be "a minumum of 25 games", with the stipulation that if the 25 games was not served, it would carry over to this season.
He served 15 games in the regular season, and five in the playoffs for a total of 20 games. His suspension should not be over. To my knowledge, it hasn't been commuted, either. He should still have five games remaining on his suspension, then a possible reinstatement by Gary Bettman.
I realize that these preseason games aren't "actual" NHL contests, but I don't understand why he's allowed to participate. He participated and played a major role in the brawl on Lawn Guylund.
Am I alone in thinking that he shouldn't be allowed to play in pre-season games either?
And am I also alone in thinking that his involvement in the brawl should play an aggrivating role in his quest for reinstatement?
I didn't watch the game, so I can't possibly know all the details, but when I read about it and his high profile involvement in the brawl, I was very confused.
In the NFL, players who are under suspension when training camp opens don't play in preseason games. In extreme circumstances (read: Micheal Vick), they're told to stay away from any NFL facility. This should be the case in the NHL.
In this exact circumstance, Ted Nolan should have had the foresight to scratch Simon from the game. There was a lot of completely senseless aggression going on in a game that doesn't count for anything. Had Simon not been there, it probably wouldn't have happened.
Obviously, there would have been (and still will be) some bad blood between the Islanders and Rangers when they first meet on November 6 on Lawn Guylund, but that's a bridge that will have to be crossed when they get to it. By allowing the suspended player to participate in that preseason game, in that highly volatile situation, that was only asking for trouble.
I just don't get why the suspension doesn't also include exhibition games.
3 years ago