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Bob Clarke's comments inexcusable

Congratulations Bob Clarke, you just made a fool of yourself on TSN.

If anybody watched the segment of Bob Clarke on TSN's Off The Record, you'll see how truly ‘old school’ he is.

This man called Steve Downie's sucker punch on Jason Blake "justified", because of the comments Blake made after Downie's hit on Dean McAmmond in the pre-season.

Apparently (without my knowledge) in the NHL these days, any comment you make about another player's actions immediately places a target on your head, with the words "come and get me" in big red letters.

Downie, again, hit a defenseless player in the head and nearly caused Blake's eye to completely swell up, while he was being tied-up by an official.

Clarke didn't stop there, oh no, he had the audacity to compare Downie's hit on McAmmond to every big time hit that Scott Stevens dished out in his illustrious career.

Apparently Bob hasn't looked at the rulebook lately! According to the NHL's own rules, Steve Downie was guilty of four separate offences in his hit.

1 - Downie left his feet; charging.

2 - Downie took more than three strides with the intention of hitting a player; also charging.

3 - Downie used his elbow as the lead part of his body making contact with McAmmond; elbowing.

And finally, 4 - Downie maliciously and without regard for the well-being of McAmmond, went after his head; intent to injure.

I've seen clips of Stevens' most devastating hits in his career. I'll concede that Stevens did jump on some of the hits. He did not, however, do any of the other three offences to another player that Downie is clearly guilty of.

I have no problem with a person supporting a physical player, but to absolve Downie of all guilt, and to also call Colin Campbell's suspension an "overreaction" is indefensible.

Bob, next time you have something to say, stop and think before it comes out.

James R. Neeson, Toronto, Ont.


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