During an intermission on Hockey Night in Canada, Kevin Bieksa went off on Nick Cousins and slammed the Florida Panthers forward, calling him a ’rat.’
Bieksa, a former NHLer and defenseman for the Vancouver Canucks, did not mince his words about his feelings for Nick Cousins, after several controversial incidents during this season.
Last week, Cousins hit Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jusso Valimaki in the head when he was already on his knees, facing the boards.
Earlier this season, he drove Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Erik Gudbranson’s head first into the boards.
In both cases, Cousins avoided any suspensions, but both Gudbranson and Jason Zucker, who retaliated on Cousins, got disciplined by Player Safety.
Although Cousins hasn’t been suspended for his hits and on-ice antics this season, Kevin Bieksa has had enough. On Hockey Night in Canada, he called Cousins out.
“What people don’t wanna watch and see is kneeing, hitting a guy’s head into the boards, ramming a guy from behind and that is a common theme for [Nick Cousins],” began Bieksa. “I have never done this before but I have to do it because this is a trend with this player.”
“There’s no place in the game for this and what is the common theme in all of these? Him at the bottom of the pile in a turtle position,” continued Bieksa. “This has been a common theme with this player… somebody in that organization or somebody that he respects has to sit down and say ‘Enough of this’ or the NHL has to come down and hammer this guy.”
To really put the nail in the coffin, Bieksa asked for the Department of Player Safety to hand out a huge suspension on Cousins.
“Somebody has to hammer this guy from the department of justice and put an end to these crappy hits because I hate em, and that’s a rat to me,” said Bieksa. “I’m sorry it is.”
It’s not often an NHL analyst so publicly slams a current NHLer, but since his rant on Hockey Night in Canada, fans have all been saying the same thing: That he’s absolutely right about this.
”Bieksa rapidly becoming the 1st line centre of this panel,” one said.
”He’s been the MVP of it for so long,” another responded.
”Damn near broke my neck nodding in approval to this,” another said.
”Bieksa just said what the entire hockey world was thinking,” another said.
”There are hundreds of languages in the world and Kevin Bieksa chose to speak Facts,” a third added.
Overall, not many have expressed they disagree with Bieksa, and the general opinion around the hockey world is that Cousins has gone too far with his dirty hitting. What’s your thoughts on this?