Violation: The team of referees in game 2 of the Rangers v. Senators series fails to protect a player in a one-way attack. They then decide to ignore common sense, which leads to the unjust ejection of Brandon Dubinsky after he is deemed the 3rd man to enter an altercation.
Explanation: I get it -- most of the time, you let the boys fight, but even in hockey there are situations when the refs are expected to intervene. Matt Carkner was in the game for only one reason: to go after Brian Boyle. This was payback for an earlier incident from game 1 in which Boyle took a couple cheapshots at rising star Erik Karlsson. The problem was that Matt Carkner engaged Boyle without his consent and put him on the ice with a sucker punch. The ref stood right next to the two just watching as Boyle took up to five punches while he was on his back defenseless. Brandon Dubinsky came in to try to pull Carkner off his teammate -- thus making him the third man to enter an ongoing altercation.
Both Carkner and Dubinsky were thrown out of the game and may face a future suspension. Dubinsky was given a two-minute minor for roughing and a game misconduct for being the third man for the altercation between Carkner and Boyle. Carkner was handed two minutes for roughing, a five-minute minor for fighting, and a game misconduct for initiating an altercation. Boyle was not handed a penalty and actually never even removed his gloves, yet it was somehow considered a fight.
Punishment: Referees will now have a hard time controlling the unnecessary physical activities that will take place for the rest of this series. Refs once again won’t have the trust of the players to protect them from fights they may not want to partake in, which means the enforcers will take it into their own hands to maintain order.
Photos and video courtesy of NBC and REUTERS/Ray Stubblebine