It was an ugly play on Sunday night and it may cost a rather beloved player some time away from the ice.
The Calgary Flames were on the road Sunday when they visited the Chicago Blackhawks at the United Center in the West Side of Chicago, Illinois and for the first half of the game we had a fairly back and forth affair between the 2 teams. It was roughly 8 minutes into the second period however that things got very ugly thanks to a blatant cheap shot courtesy of National Hockey League veteran Chris Kunitz.
As the Flames were attempting to clear the puck out of their own zone Kunitz caught Flames defenseman Travis Hamonic completely unawares with a vicious elbow to the face, one that appeared to catch Hamonic on the bridge of his nose based on the gash that he was sporting after the fact. Kunitz's elbow was almost laughably high up in the air, so high that even the Blackhawks broadcast commented on how absurd it was that he had gotten his elbow that high up on a hit of this nature.
Needless to say Hamonic was stunned by the blow and his Flames teammates rushed to his defense but nothing really came of the brief melee that ensued after the fact, perhaps in part because no one on the Blackhawks really wanted to defend a play that ugly. Hamonic however could be seen leaking out onto the ice with blood dripping down from the bridge of his nose and was immediately escorted back to the visitors locker room for repairs. You know it was a bad play because even the normally stoic Hamonic was absolutely furious, smashing his stick on the ground as he headed down the tunnel to vent his rage.
It's been a bad season for Kunitz overall and he has not in any way endeared himself to fans in Chicago. Judging on the reaction from Blackhawk fans last night it sounds like they are more interested in seeing him released from the team than they are in defending his actions from last night, and that's probably only going to get worse with this latest update.
Although we do not know the extent of the damage officially, Flames insider Wes Gilbertson is reporting that Hamonic's nose is "likely" broken and who knows how long that may force him to sit on the sidelines.