Wednesday, January 04, 2012

NHL Suspends Bourque Again

The NHL came down on Calgary Flames forward Rene Bourque for a second time this season, the first being two games, suspending the rugged forward for five games for his reckless elbow to the head of Washington Capitals forward Nicklas Backstrom. Bourque received a 2-minute minor on the play, but the incident was a clear violation of all the new rules, as explained by Brendan Shanahan in the video clip below.

Bourque is eligible to return to the Flames line-up on January 17th, when the Flames start a quick 3-game road trip in San Jose.  He will miss tomorrow night's game in Boston and the team's 4-game homestand.

In 38 games, Bourque has 13 goals and 3 assists, which is only good enough for 242nd in pool scoring this season, way down from what his expectations were coming into the year.

ImplicationsDarren S. is just missing out on games at every turn at the moment, even with the return of goalie Mike Smith to the Coyotes the other night.  With Bourque on the shelf for nearly two weeks, Darren has four players out of their respective line-ups at the moment, so there is very little chance that he'll be able to work his way into striking distance of 21st place any time soon.

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