UPDATE: On Friday, March 4, the NHL suspended Gilles for 10 games, and he will forfeit over $60,000 in salary. Not one member of the Islanders organization accompanied him to his hearing in Toronto
It has now been four weeks since the infamous Penguins/Islanders debacle of February 11th. To all of the Islanders fans that posted here about what a bunch of goons the Penguins are, I would like to present into evidence the sad excuse for an NHL player that is Trevor Gillies. For those that don’t remember, Gillies was given a nine game suspension for his participation in the fracas that occurred between the Penguins and the Islanders to go along with the 19 minutes in penalties he accrued and a game misconduct. The penalties included a fighting major, an elbowing major for the cheap shot blow to the head he delivered to Eric Tangradi, 4 minutes for roughing for continuing to pummel Tangradi while he lay prone on the ice, a 10 minute misconduct for continuing to chirp at Tangradi while he was being tended to by the medical staff and then a game misconduct.
Well, yesterday, Gillies’ nine game suspension came to an end, and he returned to the ice last night in a game against the Minnesota Wild who, if memory serves me correctly, do not have any history of ugly incidents with the Islanders or players who embarrassed Islander players. Yet, there was Gillies cheap shotting Cal Clutterbuck right to the head last night at 2:23 of the second period. So, let’s see, Gillies has just missed the previous nine games, and makes it only 22 1/2 minutes before he gets thrown out again. And this guy is in the NHL, why????
Here is a video link to the cheap shot by Gillies:
Now, who exactly is to blame for this happening? Gillies? I don’t think so. Gillies is pretty much a criminal and is just being handed the keys to the jewelry store. No, the real culprits in this case are Islanders GM Garth Snow and their coach Jack Capuano who continue to run a thug like this out there. As a hockey analyst friend of mine said about the incident, when Scott Weiland was finally let out of jail after serving his time for drug possession at 10:00 in the morning, and was then caught buying heroin at noon, should we be surprised? We’re talking about a guy who has scored 16 goals total since he was 16 years old playing junior hockey, and yet the NHL doesn’t seem to have a problem with the Islanders allowing this guy to potentially end other players’ careers. Say what you want about Matt Cooke and his rather questionable antics. At least the guy can play hockey, score goals and kill penalties. What purpose does a guy like Gillies serve?
Until the NHL starts coming down on everyone from the coach to the owner for egregiuos actions like Gillies’, the NHL is going to continue to lose more star players and end up with 30 teams that all look like the Islanders.
Well, Islanders fans, can’t wait to hear you defend this guy again and explain to all of us why Minnesota had it coming.