Sportnet's top female analyst gets put in her place by former NHLer

Sportnet's top female analyst gets put in her place by former NHLer

Yowza! Things got heated last night!



Earlier this week Minnesota Wild forward Ryan Hartman was been fined approximately $4,400 for high sticking Winnipeg Jets forward Cole Perfetti.

From NHL Player Safety:

This is the 7th... yes 7th... fine/suspension for Hartman from NHL Player Safety over his 9 year NHL career.

And here's the high stick in question:

It may look accidental but Perfetti himself told reporters that Hartman deliberately high-sticked him in the face as payback for the Brenden Dillon and Kirill Kaprizov play a day earlier. 

More from Jets insider Mike McIntyre:

Wow. Ryan Hartman flat out told Cole Perfetti he deliberately high-sticked him in the face as payback for the Brenden Dillon/Kirill Kaprizov play a day earlier.

Source: Cole Perfetti, just now, AND the microphone he was wearing in game that caught it all.

Rick Bowness just told me Cole Perfetti kept Ryan Hartman’s comments about deliberate high-stick to himself until after the game. Bowness says it would have been dealt with much differently had the team known during the game.

Cole Perfetti on Ryan Hartman high-sticking him:
"It sucks when guys are getting hurt on purpose."

On the mic'd up admission:
"He said it in kind of a respectful way. No disrespect, nothing against you, it had to happen for what happened to Kaprizov there."

"Kind of a weird thing to come out and admit it. He blatantly said it was for what happened (Saturday), even though I didn't even do anything in the play. I had nothing to do with it."

"We caught it all. I was mic'd up. I don't know if he realized that or not."
"We'll see him whenever we play him again down the road. We got the last laugh winning both games."

Mike McIntyre

Last night the Sportsnet panel led by Jennifer Botterill and Jamal Mayers discussed the play and the fine to Hartman, with the two respected analysts vehemently disagreeing on the matter.

Mayers maintains that, while what Hartman did was a dirty play, it's still within the NHL's 'code' with regards to protecting star players. Mayers, rightly so in my opinion, states that the NHL operates on an 'eye for an eye' policy and that if you make a dirty play on a star player, expect one back at any moment. Kaprizov, Hartman's teammate and Minnesota's best player, was taken out by a cheap shot so it's up to Hartman to equal the level the score. His high stick on Perfetti was dirty, no doubt, that's why he incurred a fine. But that's the cost of doing business in professional hockey.

Botterill, meanwhile, disagreed strongly citing a need to put player safety and the marketability of the NHL over any revenge.

“To me, Ryan Hartman is sending a message that you’re not going to go after our star player. And whether you like it or not, it becomes a question of how I’m going to defend myself, and it’s not about fighting you,” Mayers said.

“Some people will say that Hartman should go fight him, right? I think he sent the right message. The fact that everybody knows that he said he was going to do it or not. I’m sorry. I know the game has changed, but there’s still an element of fear. There’s still an element of being aggressive and sending a message. These two teams could also meet in the playoffs,” he added.

Botterill, it's safe to say, did not agree at all with Mayers' assessment.

“Both of the terms you guys use, revenge and sending a message, I don’t know; you watch the play, and you see Cole Perfetti, a young, great player in your league. Do you think that’s what you want to present or succumb to your young, talented players too?” she said. “I don’t know. I don’t think that’s what’s selling your game to your biggest stars. Your skilled players just don’t care if you’re a young player coming up. Be ready because this could happen to you at any point. And you’re okay with that? If it’s your son out there playing and he takes that two-handed to the face, oh, you know, what a good message to send,” Botterill added.

Check out the entire exchange:

Credit to Botterill for sticking to her guns and not backing down on this, but I've got to side with Mayers here. It may be dirty hockey, but intimidation and dirty play will ALWAYS be a part of this game. It's a tough game and it's an element of the game that I absolutely adore. 

Source: Sportsnet