Erik Cole concussed Drew Doughty with a blind-side shot-to-the-head. Despite all sorts of rules to punish this act, no suspension was assessed. And the Kings only play Carolina once this year, so there will be no opportunity for the traditional pay-back (until next year).
I made a joke the other day about leaving Kevin Westgarth in Phoenix to deal with Cole (the Hurricanes were coming in to play the Yotes right after the Kings left Phoenix). Someone in the comments made a pretty funny comment about Westgarth sneaking into Cole's hotel room and short-sheeting him. I have been amusing myself with this idea for several days now.
And it's led to this thought:
Is there anything in the CBA that would prevent Lombardi from trading an enforcer -- say, Jordan Nolan -- into the Southeast Division -- say, Tampa -- with the understanding that Nolan would be traded back in the off-season, all for the purpose of (not to put too fine a point on it) following Cole back to his own division, where Nolan would have 6 games to beat the hell out of Cole. Yzerman and Lombardi could even agree to trade Nolan back as soon as the beating was delivered. Sort of an "exchange student" program for enforcers.
It's not like such a trade would somehow compromise either team, or give them an unfair advantage. Everyone is entitled to negotiate trades that help themselves (that's the whole point). And I'm sure GMs get together and say "I hope you beat the crap out of team x" all the time, because team x losing is beneficial to both parties.
I'm sure there has to be a reason this is a circumvention of the CBA. But it really seems like it should be allowed. You cheap-shot someone because you're a coward and you know you will never play that team again that year, only to find out that the team has sent an enforcer in your division to get you. I said it's like an exchange program. It's also like T2.
Come to think of it, what would stop Lombardi from trading several enforcers to the several teams that neighbor Carolina (assuming that one had a stock-pile of enforcers for just this purpose), so that everywhere Cole looked, someone would be gunning for him?
It's probably a good thing I'm not a GM.
UPDATE: Or how about this as a deterrent...
You take a run at our star, we trade for you and bury you in the minors forever. Hit Doughty, your career is over.