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Matt Calvert Should Be Suspended

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What he did last night was inexcusable.

NHL: Stanley Cup Playoffs-Columbus Blue Jackets at Pittsburgh Penguins Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Matt Calvert’s cross-check on Tom Kuhnhackl late in last night’s 4-1 loss is inexcusable. It was a dirty play in a losing effort and has absolutely no place in the National Hockey League.

In case you missed it, here is the play:

Matt Calvert targets an unsuspecting Kuhnhackl, raises up hit Kuhnhackl high, shatters his stick, and then hits the bent-over Kuhnhackl again, knocking him to the ice, for good measure. Under absolutely no circumstances is that play legal, to be celebrated, or anything other than condemned. It was a filthy act of violence that we can only hope the team is truly better than.

The Blue Jackets may have wanted to play with a physical edge (and they have, more than doubling the amount of hits they averaged per game this season), but this absolutely crossed a line. Under no circumstances - none - is what Calvert did acceptable.

Calvert will have a hearing today with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety.

One can only hope that the league does the right thing and suspends Calvert for multiple games. This type of play cannot go unpunished.

UPDATE

Matt Calvert has been suspended one game by the NHL.