Opinions will vary on the “hit” delivered by Mark Giordano on Connor McDavid in last Wednesday’s Battle of Alberta hockey game between the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers. Some will call the hit not even a hit. Some will say Giordano stuck his leg out while others will say it’s more his hip that led to McDavid’s shin bumping Giordano’s leg. The play is being dissected and discussed because, after all, it is the Battle of Alberta and fans want something to talk about to keep the animosity going.
What we know is that McDavid didn’t like the play. You could see as much in his reaction on the bench towards the end of the contest. He doesn’t often get heated but at that moment, he was livid.
After the game, he refused to comment on it saying he didn’t want to turn the incident into a media circus. Not everyone agreed. Fellow Oilers’ forward Leon Draisaitl was not a fan of the play, while defenseman Darnell Nurse just forgo giving an answer and said instead, “What did Connor say?”
One man who’s not happy the hit is getting so much attention is Flames general manager Brad Treliving who sounded off Friday against people who have taken aim at Giordano. Some have said this was a malicious play and that Giordano has a bit of history with questionable plays like this. Trevling is calling that “garbage”.
“Any talk that there’s a malicious intent on the Gio hit (on McDavid) is complete garbage,” Treliving told reporters.
Oilers head coach Dave Tippett tended to agree when he said it was a tough game and that has to be taken into consideration. He didn’t believe there was malice on the part of Giordano.
The Flames’ defenseman is likely under more scrutiny for the play because he was the same player directly involved in McDavid getting injured at the end of last season. Will the Oilers react more like Draisaitl did when the meet the Flames again on Saturday? Or, are many of them like Tippett who thinks it was just tough hockey?
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