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College Hockey:
Martin talks to Malone, says hit was clean

Lying in a hospital bed with a halo keeping his neck stable, Denver’s Jesse Martin harbors no ill will toward North Dakota’s Brad Malone.

It was Malone’s hit that knocked Martin out of Saturday’s game and probably ended his career, but according to the Denver Post, Martin spoke to Malone for 10 minutes Monday and told him the hit in question wasn’t dirty.

“Jesse had heard Brad was having a tough time, and he wanted Brad to know he had no hard feelings,” Martin’s father, Terry, said in a phone interview with the Post. “Jesse doesn’t think it was an illegal hit, and he wanted Brad to know that.”

Terry Martin said DU trainer Aaron Leu dialed Malone’s number and Jesse was able to hold the phone to his ear through the bottom of his neck brace. Doctors have decided against surgery Tuesday to repair the neck fractures, but it may be scheduled for Wednesday, pending results of the latest CT scan, Terry Martin said.

At practice Monday, Pioneers coach George Gwozdecky and the team struggled with their emotions.

“Jesse understands it’s a game, a hard, physical game, and unfortunately in rare occasions, things like that happen,” Gwozdecky said to the Post. “From what I understand, Jesse is very forgiving, and I’m sure that brings a sense of relief to (Malone).”


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  • COSDUFAN

    I am a DU fan and was watching the game live when the hit occurred, I thought at the time it was clean. After rewatching it many times, I still felt it was very, very unfortunate but clean. #22 never left his feet and didn’t lead with the elbow. I think Martin’s response is above classy. Hockey is a tough sport, anyone who’s played knows this. I hope and proay for a full recovery for Jessie and that even #22 can move past it too.

  • gosioux

    lets hear all the people that commented earlier about how cheap of a player malone is and how dirty the hit was change there minds. Its sad that someone was hurt but those things happen in contact sports. It won’t be the last time

    • aye-4n-aye

      The problem is the definition of “clean hit”. If ANY hit to the head is a foul, then there can be no clean hits to the head. Period. What if the consequence of hitting a player in the head meant that the hitter spent equal time away from the game as the injured player. I bet a lot of players would avoid the “clean’ hit and the dirty ones too. If you put a guy out for a season, then you sit out too. Put him out for a career, then you are done too. Interesting huh?

      • Steve

        You are misinterpreting the head contact rule. Under the new rule there is still going to be checks that involve contact with the head. A head contact infraction occurs when a player “targets” the head or makes sole contact with the head. Please refrain from commenting. Martin handles the situation better than most fans. Class act.

  • Felixp2929

    To elaborate on gosioux’s comment, it is unfortunate that classless people choose this forum to denigrate good hockey players. I suspect the lion’s share of posts that characterized Malone’s hit as “dirty” were fans of a WCHA program that originates from Minneapolis. It is a pitiable shame that they use the misfortune and pain of two good hockey players to further some ridiculously stupid propaganda. I encourage those that characterize UND players as “dirty” to do the rest of the country a favor and shut up.

    • Gopher26

      Felixp2929, Shut your mouth. I hope that team from Minneapolis pounds the sioux every game you play just like the team from Orono did two weeks ago. I have seen both teams play and from what I see, the gophers won’t have a problem beating the sioux.

      • gosioux

        as long as they stay off mopeds and leave kangas on the bench.

      • Stone

        Yeah that was a real educated comment Gopher26…. look who you have been playing. Take your rodent shaded glasses off and realize that you just aren’t talented enough to beat the Sioux. It won’t happen. Period….. Jesse my prayers are with you man.

  • Hockeyguy

    Although I dont think it was as Dirty as the hit on Wehrs last year, this does seem to be a trend with UND. How can you say the hit was legal? It was a hit to the head and a charge. If it was a legal hit the the WCHA/NCAA won’t discipline him. I’m guessing he will be disciplined…..hopefully very harshly!

    • Steve

      Well, when the guy receiving the hit that probably ended his career says it was clean it’s tough to argue. He is the person who should be most bitter about that hit but he recognizes that it was unfortunate but not “dirty.”

      Sometimes the NCAA/WCHA punish players based on the result of the hit. It’s extremely unfortunate what occurred but had he not been injured, there would be no suspension. It’s that simple. I don’t see how this is a “trend” with UND. What other suspensions can you think of besides the two you mentioned?

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_STOZHIHC4JGADR5NPEFTWKEAIY Michael

    The debate over clean vs dirty is over. After everyone involved has stated that it was clean, you guys need to get over it.

    This is not the place for this, go to another forum.

    Our thought and prayers are with Jesse and his family. Hope to see him back on a rink.

  • wchafan

    Its easy to look back at these plays, slow them down and replay them to death and try to say what kind of a hit it was. When watched in real time thisngs happen so fast that I don’t believe there was any intent of a malicious hit. There is know doubt that Malone came in fast and hard and his intent would be to disrupt the play and take Martin off the puck, his reaction time to pull up as Jesse put his head down was seconds. To be penalized for head contact was appropriate, to be suspended for a game is questionable. All the best to Jesse for a speedy / full recovery and good luck to Brad for the rest of his season.

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