SUN Hockey Pool

Quinn: There's no code anymore

DEREK VAN DIEST, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:35 AM ET

Pat Quinn didn’t see the hit, but he probably didn’t need to. The Edmonton Oilers head coach has been around long enough and has seen too many shots to the head recently to know that times have changed.

Wednesday's indiscretion by Anaheim Ducks defenceman James Wisniewski on Chicago Blackhawks defenceman Brent Seabrook was the latest ugly incident.

“They’re looking to make the coaches responsible, make the ownership responsible, but until the players accept that this is beyond the limits, nothing is going to change,” said Quinn. “I played without helmets and I don’t remember that kind of stuff happening.

“It’s a hard game and there are inadvertent things that happen that will cause problems. But there are still a lot of intentional things going on. I haven’t seen this hit, but if it was intentional, you have to deal with it harshly.”

The league did, suspending Wisniewski for eight games on Thursday.

“There has been a change in how players conduct themselves out there and how the league responds to it,” Quinn said. “I think that old role of the ’60s policeman is long gone. You did look after it and you did it within the set and guidelines of the rules, a players’ code. There was a real code and not many guys went outside that. Today a lot of guys don’t have a code it (looks) like.”

Eberle to start in minors

With Jordan Eberle’s season coming to an end last weekend, the Oilers have assigned their first-round pick to the Springfield Falcons. The Oilers could still call up Eberle to the NHL, but if they do it’ll most likely be towards the end of the year with less than 10 games to go in the season. Eberle is eligible to play nine games in the NHL without having the first year of his contract kick in.

“He has a good hockey mind and I’m sure that will show up fairly well there,” Quinn said. “He’s not a big guy, so I’m sure that teams playing against him will try to be physical against him, so he has to learn to avoid those big physical situations. He has to learn to compete and produce the same way he has in the past. He has to find a way to do that as he goes through the ranks.”

derek.vandiest@sunmedia.ca


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