This probably isn't the best example of a hit to use to complain about not having someone to back up teammates and deter hits against the star players. This was a normal play that you see several times a game. I think part of the probably was Dats stretching out his arm and reaching around to try and get the puck, leaving the shoulder at the wrong angle to take impact.
In terms of "payback" for clean hits on star players....I really don't have much of a problem with it to be honest...to a point of course. Hitting is part of the game, but you still want your star players to avoid as many hits as you can and if you have the other team think twice before even laying a clean hit....then that's good. If you look back at the 80s, Gretzky had to deal with a lot of hooks and holds, but not hits. He barely got touched.
- hooon likes this