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Sabres Connor Clifton lays a hit on Panthers Nick Cousins
Photo credit: https://twitter.com/hockeydaily365/

Clifton assessed a 5 minute major after high hit on Cousins

Published April 13, 2024 at 7:50 PM

Nick Cousins plays on the edge and is not many people or players favourites, but when playing against him, you still have to respect him and play by the rules, even if you choose to toe the line a little.

Connor Clifton learned this the hard way during the game that featured his Buffalo Sabres and the aforementioned Cousins team, the Buffalo Sabres. During a moment in play, Cousins had just come around the Sabres net with his head a little low and was reaching for a puck. Clifton, who was seemingly trying to make a clean hit, followed through and connected with Cousins head, which caused him to fall to the ice, as seen below. For his efforts, Clifton was assessed a match penalty.

It has been preached time and time again that hockey is a fast-paced and physical sport, and sometimes hits occur that are deemed unnecessary and dangerous, like the one seen above. While the game shouldn't and doesn't need to change, it is the responsibility of the players to know what is happening at all times and to make sure that they do not put themselves into a vulnerable position.

This is to say that the offending player (the one who is delivering the hit) and the player receiving the hit need to be keenly aware of everything occurring around them at all times. Appreciating the hitting should and will continue to be part of the game, hits that Clifton laid on Cousins do not need to happen and shouldn't happen, but until the league gets serious about punishment or showing how to give and take a hit, even at this level, it will continue to happen.
April 13   |   104 answers
Clifton assessed a 5 minute major after high hit on Cousins

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