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Sharks Gameday: Hot Fuzz

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Nobody tells me nothin'.
Nobody tells me nothin'.

Hey, what's up?

Today my gameday post features a couple of massive tables listing player suspensions last season vs. this season. For the sake of easy reading and out of respect for my fellow blog authors (except for spade and Rudy. Oh, and Earl too.) I have put everything below the jump.

Read on!

For the purposes of these suspension tables, I counted preseason games as 0.5 games each.

Here's the suspension data for last season (through December 3rd, 2010):

10-11 Season Date Player Type # of Games
9/24/2010 Nick Boynton Gesture 0.5
10/4/2010 Michael Cammalleri Slashing 1
10/10/2010 Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond Automatic - instigator 1
10/12/2010 James Wisniewski Gesture 2
10/12/2010 Niklas Hjalmarsson Boarding 2
10/18/2010 Shane Doan Head hit 3
10/22/2010 Rick Rypien Fan interaction 6
10/27/2010 Stephane Robidas Automatic - instigator
11/1/2010 Daniel Briere Head hit 3
11/5/2010 Joe Thornton Head hit 2
11/13/2010 Brent Burns Head hit 2
11/18/2010 Mattias Ritola Boarding 2
11/18/2010 Olli Jokinen Head hit 3
Number of suspensions through Dec 3rd: 13
Average length of suspension: 2.19 games
Average length for head hits: 2.6 games
Average length for other infractions: 1.94 games

And here's the data for year zero of the reign of Shanahan:

11-12 Season Date Player Type # of Games
September 20, 2011 Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond Boarding 3
September 20, 2011 Jody Shelley Boarding 7.5
September 23, 2011 James Wisniewski Head hit 10
September 23, 2011 Brad Staubitz Boarding 5
September 24, 2011 Brad Boyes Head hit 1
September 24, 2011 Jean-Francois Jacques Fighting 7
September 26, 2011 Tom Sestito Boarding 3
September 28, 2011 Brendan Smith Head hit 6.5
September 30, 2011 Clarke MacArthur Head hit 2.5
October 8, 2011 Pierre-Marc Bouchard Stickwork 2
October 17, 2011 Kris Letang Boarding 2
October 28, 2011 Andy Sutton Head hit 5
October 28, 2011 Daniel Carcillo Boarding 2
November 2, 2011 Patrick Kaleta Head hit 4
November 17, 2011 Chris Stewart Boarding 3
November 23, 2011 Andre Devaux Head hit 3
November 26, 2011 Max Pacioretty Head hit 3
December 3, 2011 Jordin Tootoo Hitting the goalie 2
December 3, 2011 Mark Fistric
Charging 3
Number of suspensions through Dec 3rd: 19
Average length of suspension: 3.92 games
Average length for head hits: 4.38 games
Average length for other infractions: 3.59 games

I got all this information from Wikipedia, so if it's wrong then blame this guy.

So we have significantly more suspensions this year than last year, though that difference disappears if you discard the crazy number of preseason suspensions we had this year. The average length of a suspension has roughly doubled, with more of that increase coming in suspensions for head hits than for other infractions.

It will be interesting to take a look at these tables again later in the year, to see if we see a decline in the number of head hit infractions (which would support the idea that Shanahan's stricter penalties are working) and if the difference in the severity of the penalties handed out last season and this season continues to grow.

On the subject of suspensions, here's an idea I'd like to see the NHL try: when a player gets suspended, his team must leave a roster spot empty until the suspension is finished. They get to have their full complement of players on the ice, of course, but they just have one fewer body on the bench. It's sort of like a super-penalty box: a player did something so bad he's putting his team down a man for several games. What do you think?

Anyways, this whole suspension thing was inspired by my 58th-favorite movie, Hot Fuzz. Here's an awesome clip that's full of spoilers, so seriously don't watch this if you haven't seen the movie.

But now let's talk about tonight's game.


Next Game

Dallas Stars
@ San Jose Sharks

Thursday, Dec 8, 2011, 7:30 PM PST
HP Pavilion

Complete Coverage >

There comes a point in a sports rivalry where it stops being healthy competition and starts turning malignant. A pure desire to beat a rival can become twisted by contempt, until you seriously don't even enjoy games against that team any more because you just despise them SO MUCH. You start finding yourself wishing physical harm on opposing players and fans, and watching games becomes some sort of weird Two Minutes Hate sort of thing.

That's how I feel about the Dallas Stars.

Enjoy your time in the new Sex Offender Division, Stars. You've earned it.

Prediction: The Dallas Stars let the door hit them on the way out. Sharks win 5-2.