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BOSTON (CBS) – Monday June 6, 2011 is a date that will live in Boston sports’ infamy. A date when the all but dead Boston Bruins rose from their graves and turned the Stanley Cup Finals into a legitimate series.
It was also a day of loss as the team’s star winger and Eastern Conference Finals Game 7 hero Nathan Horton was obliterated by a blind side hit. Horton, who was entering the offensive zone, was unexpectedly elbowed in the head by Vancouver defenseman, Aaron Rome.
Rome received a severe punishment and was suspended for the final four games of the Stanley Cup Final. Although he accepted his penalty and wished Nathan well, he wasn’t exactly in accordance with the decision. At one point, he considered appealing the call.
It’s been several months now and Rome’s sentiments haven’t changed.
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According to Horton, Rome sent him a brief text message and left it at that. No phone call. No sincere apology. Last night while at a Milan Lucic’s charity softball game in Lowell, Horton stated, “If it was me, I wouldn’t have thrown a text message someone’s way. I’d have a little bit more respect to actually make a phone call.”
Ultimately, the lack of communication reflects poorly on Rome. On some level it demonstrates his inability to let the punishment go. No matter what his intentions were, true sincerity and remorse could never be demonstrated through a simple text message.
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At the core of the matter is the ethical standard to which we as sports fans hold our athletes to; if you hurt a guy, intentional or not, apologize and move on. Remember, even Matt Cooke reached out to Marc Savard.
Although it may not be the biggest deal, for a potentially career ending hit, you expect more from our professional hockey players.