Jennifer Botterill and Jamal Mayers discussion the Harman High Stick on Perfetti
Photo credit: Sportsnet

Former NHL Player Puts SportsNet's Top Female Analyst in Her Place

Published January 4, 2024 at 12:57

This week, Minnesota Wild player Ryan Hartman was fined $4,427.08 for a high sticking penalty against Jets forward Cole Perfetti.

From the NHL Player Safety X page:

Just for the record, this is the 7th disciplinary action resulting in a fine/suspension for Hartman over the last 9 years.

This is the high-stick penalty in question:

Hartman Executes a Planned High-Stick During the Faceoff Against Perfetti at His Own Admission

Looks innocent enough. But as we found out earlier this week when the high stick took place, it was planned. Hartman deliberately high-sticked him in the face as payback for the Brenden Dillon and Kirill Kaprizov play a day earlier.

Winnepeg Jets insider Mike McIntyre:

Here is Cole Perfetti talking about the incident being on a hot mic:

As Perfetti puts it, Hartman told him "No disrespect, nothing personal to you, it is just something that had to happened."

See Perfetti's perspection below:

Last night during a panel discussion on SportsNet that was lead by Jennifer Botterill and Jamal Mayers both analysts disagreed on the matter.

Mayers position was that this is part of the player 'code' in the NHL. That if you take out a star player on one team, especially if it is a dirty play, expect some retaliation at some point. The 'eye for an eye' policy that the players play by.

Kaprizov, who is Hartman's teammate and Minnesota's best player, was taken out by a cheap shot so hartman just leveled the playing field. His high stick on Perfetti was dirty, no doubt, that's why he incurred a fine. But that's the cost of doing business in professional hockey. He even told Perfetti it was not personal, just business.

Botterill's position was more in line with player safety as a concern, and marketability of the game.

«To me, Ryan Hartman is sending a message that you're not going to go after our star player. And whether you like it or not, it becomes a question of how I'm going to defend myself, and it's not about fighting you,» Mayers said.

«Some people will say that Hartman should go fight him, right? I think he sent the right message. The fact that everybody knows that he said he was going to do it or not. I'm sorry. I know the game has changed, but there's still an element of fear. There's still an element of being aggressive and sending a message. These two teams could also meet in the playoffs,» he added.

It is safe to say, Botterill did not agree with this take on the situation.

«Both of the terms you guys use, revenge and sending a message, I don't know; you watch the play, and you see Cole Perfetti, a young, great player in your league. Do you think that's what you want to present or succumb to your young, talented players too?» she said. «I don't know. I don't think that's what's selling your game to your biggest stars. Your skilled players just don't care if you're a young player coming up. Be ready because this could happen to you at any point. And you're okay with that? If it's your son out there playing and he takes that two-handed to the face, oh, you know, what a good message to send,» Botterill added.

Here is the exchange below to see for yourself:

In my opinion, I have to agree with Mayers. You cannot let your star players just get dirty hits or plays without retaliation. It is a rough game, and it is a part of the culture of hockey and what we as fans sometimes do expect to see.

As Read On: Hockey Feed - Sportnet's top female analyst gets put in her place by former NHLer
January 4   |   89 answers
Former NHL Player Puts SportsNet's Top Female Analyst in Her Place

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