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Koci: 'My purpose wasn't to hurt' Green

Colorado's David Koci told the Denver Post today that he's sorry for his hit on Caps defenseman Mike Green. (Thanks to Japers' Rink for retweeting.)

Here's a video of what Koci had to say about the hit that left Green "a little woozy" and in need of some stitches:

The NHL has not yet suspended Koci for the hit, but the Denver Post's Adrian Dater says the ruling could come down tomorrow or Saturday.

By Lindsay Applebaum  |  December 17, 2009; 2:07 PM ET
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Morning roundup: 'Unnecessary' hit causes a stir
Next: Varlamov faces shots, nears return


From previous thread:


I do agree with others in thinking it was Niko vs. kono..

Another of those commercials that I remember...I think it was with Gonchar. The camera is following him as he returns home from work...he makes his way up the stairs and to his bedroom, closing the door on the camera...above his door, the goal light and sirens go on....

I think thats how it went, but I always liked that and the Kolzig pouring wine over his face at dinner ones the best.

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | December 17, 2009 3:07 PM

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | December 17, 2009 3:11 PM | Report abuse

His focus was to go out there and have a good shift? Seemed that he was very focused on Greenie's numbers as he checked him into the boards from behind. Sorry, but I believe this guy has somewhat of a track record...? "Sorry" should not cut it.

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | December 17, 2009 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Send a messege to all the goons out there and suspend him 20 games

Posted by: lylewimbledon | December 17, 2009 3:17 PM | Report abuse

I don't care what his purpose was and if he's sorry. The nhl shouldn't either. 20 games minimum. DIRTY PLAY!

Posted by: brian58 | December 17, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Liar, liar pants on fire. His tone and tenor are completely unpersuasive. The guy is a goon, plays on the Avs for the purpose of being a goon, and was obviously dispatched on the ice to injur players. He was assuredly coached by a dweebie Avs PR aide (or his slimy agent) to apologize (if you can call it that) to try to minimize his suspension and income loss. Given that one of Team Canada's stars was the victim here, I'm betting Campbell and crew come down real, real hard on him.

Posted by: Exile_in_Philly | December 17, 2009 3:20 PM | Report abuse

It actually makes it worse if he wasn't in control, that makes him a loose cannon and a liability for anyone on the ice.

Posted by: apa67 | December 17, 2009 3:25 PM | Report abuse

I'm not sure, but wasn't Koci the guy who drilled Gonchar last year and caused the injury that kept him out a good bit? If so, given that and his hits on Greenie and Morrisonn (although the hit on Mo was not given a penalty), I think he should get at least 10 games, but I'm betting on something lower. And what in the world were Sacco and Kono thinking about putting him on the ice in that situation? Was he going to score a double hat trick? I know that people will say, oh, to generate some energy on the bench and in the stands. I say, nonsense. If you send him out in that kind of situation, I think the coaches need to be held accountable as well, as much as I admire Sacco and Kono.

Posted by: NorthFork1 | December 17, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

the lamest part of the video is when the Denver-based reporter responds with "fair enough" like saying he didn't mean to hurt Green absolves him from the hit. Granted, reporters tend to use white lies like that to keep the situation less awkward.

Posted by: ralph4100 | December 17, 2009 3:35 PM | Report abuse

Again, the Caps need to acquire a rugged forward that can get out there like Brashear did and scare other players away from taking runs at Green and Ovechkin.

The 'police by team' approach where guys like Matt Bradley and John Erskine are taking on that role is in many ways counterproductive as we need them on the ice to PLAY THE GAME.

And let's face it, despite his size, Erskine is a decent but not overwhelming enforcer.

The kinds of hits Green and Morrisonn took against Colorado were NOT in the offing a couple of years ago when Brashear was here.

When he hit the ice after a borderline cheap hit on a Caps skill player, you could see the fear factor for the opposing players who were skating that shift.

The Caps need to bring that presence back as long as guys like Koci are allowed to ply their trade in the NHL.

Posted by: leopard09 | December 17, 2009 3:43 PM | Report abuse

my guess is that he gets 4-6 games

Posted by: _stevo | December 17, 2009 3:50 PM | Report abuse

Why is the league taking so long to suspend this guy? Wasn't Ovie suspended the next day after the Carolina game and his mariginal hit? Koci obviously meant to hurt Greene since he took a nice straight line and crushed him. I don't see what the delay is. I'm thinking the league better do the right thing or I'm gonna be p*ssed!

Posted by: jmurray019 | December 17, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

If the league does nothing with Koci, it really puts the Caps in a bind. Are they supposed to just watch while their skilled players continue to be carried off the ice? The league really needs to step up here and protect teams that are trying to play the game the right way.

Posted by: zmega | December 17, 2009 4:03 PM | Report abuse

When he hit the ice after a borderline cheap hit on a Caps skill player, you could see the fear factor for the opposing players who were skating that shift.

Posted by: leopard09 | December 17, 2009 3:43 PM

after a borderline cheap hit on a Caps skill player

so having brash on the bench didn't really keep the other team from a cheap hit.

you could see the fear factor for the opposing players who were skating that shift

and if the player that threw the hit is now on the bench - what do you do?
if brash comes out and has a hit that is called a penalty or picks a fight - the caps are now on the PK - and your opponent gets exactly what they want, which is you off your game and down a man

what we need is exactly what erskine did, take it to the offending player WHEN it happens.

i wouldn't mind seeing them get a fourth line forward kind of like bradley - just a little better with the fists.
this team can't afford to have their 'tough' guy on D. it won't happen often but they skated almost the whole third period with two real d men.

i do not believe in any way that if the caps still had brash - that koci would have done anything different from what actually happened

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 17, 2009 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Um.. of course he's going to say that. What else was he gonna say? No, he was not trying to have a good shift, he was intentionally out there to take a run at someone... I hope he gets an appropriate suspension.

For the goalies on the weekend, you guys think it'll be Theo tomorrow and Neuvy on Sat? I sure hope Neuvy gets a chance to redeem himself.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 17, 2009 4:04 PM | Report abuse

The obvious question is:

So what was your purpose in hitting Green in the back if it wasn't to hurt him?

What a piece of work.

Posted by: BetterOffWithFedorov | December 17, 2009 4:10 PM | Report abuse

BTW I call BS on Koci - he was doing nothing but trying to hurt Green.

Posted by: lylewimbledon | December 17, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

I sure hope Neuvy gets a chance to redeem himself.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 17, 2009 4:04 PM

me too
i'd like for BB to find at least two more games for neuvy before varly gets back

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 17, 2009 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Given how long it's taken to hear anything, I wouldn't be surprised to see a suspension that's a statement -- 20 games or so. An out of control hit to a star, from behind, into the boards. Also, suspension won't hurt Avs -- Koci's at 5 mins a game and (as BB made clear) has no talent.

I hope greenie's not coming back too soon. From the way he dropped when he was hit, I think he has briefly knocked out. Altered consciousness = concussion, even if he just wants to say woozie. Effects are much more dangerous if a player gets one before he has recovered from a previous one.

Posted by: hook99 | December 17, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

Richard Nixon: "I am not a crook."
Larry Craig: "I am not gay."
David Koci: "I am not a dirty player."

Posted by: large23220 | December 17, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I feel like having Brashear on the team would have made a difference, but I can't prove it or anything, and he's definitely a bit of a liability in terms of hockey talent.

A suspension would be great, and I'm sure it will happen, but what I would really like to see is hockey players wearing better helmets with full face masks so that there isn't quite as much need to worry about hits to the head in the first place.

Not saying nothing should be done in terms of more severe penalties for hits to the head. But the helmets NHLers wear seem relatively flimsy and not very protective of the face compared to what college players wear or compared to what football players wear.

Really, your brain is in there rolling around, potentially knocking against your skull. Brain damage is pretty much permanent whenever it occurs.

It's always odd to me to think back about the games I saw in the 70s where few wore helmets, or to see old games on TV where even the goalies aren't wearing masks. I still feel that way. A tiny helmet and a face shield isn't enough.

And what is up with the seamless glass in Colorado? That was part of the problem with Green, it seemed to me. It seems pretty unforgiving. I'd ban that immediately if I were running the NHL.

Posted by: youaresquishy | December 17, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I meant to say that I still get the feeling now that I did when I watched players in the 70s without helmets. The flimsy helmets, even with face shields, are just a stylistic thing. Other players would laugh if you wore a football helmet or a college-style helmet. Just like when other players would laugh if you wore a helmet at all in the 60s, or if a goalie wore a mask in the 40s.

But it seems kind of dumb. Those helmets seem like they offer next to no protection.

Posted by: youaresquishy | December 17, 2009 4:25 PM | Report abuse


I think Neuvirth will be in Nets Saturady night. I am just hoping he is less timid. He needs to come out and challange the shooter instead of sitting back in the net. That tends to make him small in the net and then can beat him high glove.

I would also like to see Semin, Backs and Ovie back on the 1st line. Both Semin and Ovie seem to get less production when they are on seperate lines.

Posted by: Caps4Life1 | December 17, 2009 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Why GMGM and Gabby are doing it right by not having an enforcer

1) Few could doubt that Brash was one of the top-shelf goons in the league. But he had extremely limited value. He seemed to lose as many fights as he won. Even though he scored the first goal of the philthy series 2 years ago, he also did next to nothing to stop the scourge of goalie interference on Huet. If your enforcer can't stop that, what good is he? And last year he had even less of an impact.

2) Real goons create just as many problems as they solve. We spend enough time in the box as it is.

3) Their justification all along still wins the day: our PP will be all the incentive other teams need to keep it in the road. Unfortunately, our PP is hot and cold, but ultimately we're too dangerous to risk it.

Posted by: large23220 | December 17, 2009 4:31 PM | Report abuse

It's always odd to me to think back about the games I saw in the 70s where few wore helmets

Posted by: youaresquishy | December 17, 2009 4:22 PM

i don't think as many players in the 70s were willing to hit high because of the posibility of someone coming after them - as they didn't have a helmet either.

most player then tended to keep their stick down too. i think the stick started getting higher when the lower leagues made face protection mandatory - the bad habits picked up seem to be carrying over to the big league

i also think that the protective gear that is worn today (shoulder, hip, knee etc.) has the potential to inflict more damage than the equipment worn back then - as well as player being bigger, faster and stronger

Posted by: Capt_Kirk_in_AZ | December 17, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

The_Stanley_Caps, I believe the commercial actually showed Gonchar making out with a woman. They both made their way up the stairs, then into the bedroom. The door closed, then the goal light above the door lit up.

The spot was pulled rather quickly, though.

Posted by: JohninMpls | December 17, 2009 5:00 PM | Report abuse

in an ideal world of course you would much rather have 18 skaters who can play at least 15 minutes every game suit up instead of guys like Brash or Koci.

Detroit can do without an enforcer because they have enough toughness on the team. It still remains to be seen whether or not this team is tough enough to go thru the whole season without a legit enforcer.

Posted by: joek443 | December 17, 2009 5:01 PM | Report abuse

If by having a good shift he meant "to kill someone," then yea, I believe him.

Posted by: SA-Town | December 17, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Detroit did realize they lacked toughness and signed Brad May. May is one of the best light heavies in the league and can take on anyone without losing badly.

Posted by: FLDave | December 17, 2009 5:08 PM | Report abuse

My optimistic explanation for why the league is taking so long to announce something on Koci is that they are investigating to see whether any of the Avs coaches told Koci to run Green.
My pessimistic explanation is that the league is waiting for the situation to cool off a bit, so there will be less of an outcry when they announce that they are going to do nothing.

Posted by: zmega | December 17, 2009 5:11 PM | Report abuse


Yeah, my memory of that commercial was a little blurry, but I thought it was pretty funny, and I can see why it was quickly pulled :)

Posted by: The_Stanley_Caps | December 17, 2009 5:28 PM | Report abuse

Well the apology worked. Fined but not suspended, per McKenzie.

Posted by: Section117 | December 17, 2009 5:36 PM | Report abuse

No suspension, only fined.

Posted by: hockymn22 | December 17, 2009 5:38 PM | Report abuse

I've got an idea...maybe BB should do another cheezy commercial with him having a garden salad with the Ameritel triplets and Dave Koci. Why can't we all get along, right? Let's force Koci to watch BB eat his garden salad and sit through one hour straight of his self promoting annoying commercials. That should be punishment enough! I here BB now doing a commercial for Burger King and will be paid with a life time supply of chicken nuggets! the morale of the story...we need an enforcer like Booggard!!!!!!!!

Posted by: ReedRothchild | December 17, 2009 5:46 PM | Report abuse

What the heck?! This can't be for real! Ovie gets two games for his hit and Koci's much worse hit gets nothing?! What a joke this is!

Posted by: rachel216 | December 17, 2009 5:47 PM | Report abuse

FLDave first Detroit needed a guy who could play for the league min to have as the 13th forward when people couldn't go for a game. Brad May only played 22 games so far because they didn't even sign him and play him until guys started to go down. I would also bet that when their guys get healthy he will be back in the press box. If the Wings really thought they needed an enforcer before the season started they they would have kept McCarthy.

An enforcer would not have done anything to stop what happened last game. That is what Koci is on the ice to do (fight that is) so by having an enforcer to fight him (assuming he was even out with Koci when it happened) all you do is have him do the same thing and then do what he is payed to do and have him fight. And if he isn't out and we send out our enforcer the next shift to go after one of the Colorado players then we are just as bad as them if not worse.

Posted by: icehammer97 | December 17, 2009 5:59 PM | Report abuse

The ruling is probably delayed to due the fact the Colin Campbell had to leave the Board of Governors meeting in Pebble Beach due to a family emergency.

Posted by: SuperG5 | December 17, 2009 6:01 PM | Report abuse

From the Denver Post's blog

Honestly, I am completely shocked by this one: the NHL has decided NOT to suspend Avs forward David Koci for his major boarding penalty against Washington’s Mike Green the other night. There IS is a fine for Koci – not sure how much just yet – but no suspension. Wow.

Wonder what Bruce “I hope they throw the book at him” Boudreau thinks of this?

Posted by: icehammer97 | December 17, 2009 6:02 PM | Report abuse

There's a comment on the same Denver Post blog posted by someone with the handle "Ted", telling Koci "apology not accepted" and then ripping him...could it be our Ted?

Posted by: NorthFork1 | December 17, 2009 6:08 PM | Report abuse

Richard Nixon: "I am not a crook."
Larry Craig: "I am not gay."
David Koci: "I am not a dirty player."

Posted by: large23220

Tiger Woods : I am not a cheetah

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | December 17, 2009 6:13 PM | Report abuse

So how do the Caps respond? The message from the league is that they are not going to protect the Caps skill players - the Caps have to do it themselves. The message to the rest of the league is that pure cheap shots by goons on skill players will receive no significant penalty. So, if you're the Flyers, what do you do next game against the Caps? I would like to see significant penalties against gooning - it would be easy to remove it from the sport. But the message from the league is that they aren't going in that direction. If I'm GMGM, my only alternative to get the league's attention is to add the biggest, meanest, most sociopathic guy I can find to protect Ted's investment.

Posted by: zmega | December 17, 2009 6:15 PM | Report abuse

You see, it's like this. Campbell has a son who plays on the Florida Panthers. Ovi gets a two game suspension which means he doesn't play against the Panthers. Koci's team is not scheduled to play the Panthers any time soon, so why would Campbell need to suspend him?

It's disgusting to see such a double standard, but that's the way it is. Move on, and when someone gets killed or paralyzed, then maybe we'll see some suspensions. Unless, of course, it's our own "Caveman" who is disciplined.

By the way, did you catch that when Ovie was asked about which one: Jessica Alba and whoever the other female was, Ovie said, "Definitely, both!" Gotta love him. When the same question was posed to Crosby, Sid the kid replied, "Mario!"

Posted by: dccitizen1 | December 17, 2009 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Hey everyone, here's the news on Koci. They have in "The Hockey News".

Koci was fined but not suspended.

What's up with me? His deeds impressed me as more egragarious than anything Ovi's done this year. Yes, it was worse than Ovi's hit to Kaleta and his hit to Gleason.

I would have thought injuring both Morrisonn and Green in the same game would be suspension worthy. Is somebody prejudiced or what?

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 17, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

I would love to hear why Cambell made this decision. The league keeps saying that it want's to punish repeat offenders more and yet Koci (and Ruttu who also only got fined for a hit to the head) only get fines with no real punishment. Does anyone wonder why American's in general consider the NHL a minor league?

Posted by: icehammer97 | December 17, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Some good news for today from TEB's twitter.

Goalie Semyon Varlamov (groin strain) is practicing and facing shots today. Looks sharp.

That is good news and hopefully he is back soon.

Posted by: icehammer97 | December 17, 2009 6:28 PM | Report abuse

Now I am p*ssed

Posted by: jmurray019 | December 17, 2009 6:32 PM | Report abuse

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman takes calls from listeners every Thursday from 4-5pm Eastern Time on XM Radio's "Home Ice" (XM Channel 204).

Unfortunately it's too late to ask Bettman about this decision today, but I know what I'll be calling and asking the Commissioner about next week (or the week after that if he takes Christmas Eve off -- or the week after THAT if he takes New Year's Eve off).

FYI, the call-in phone number for the show is 877-645-6696 or you can submit questions to Bettman by e-mailing Just providing the information, y'know.

Posted by: greggwiggins | December 17, 2009 6:37 PM | Report abuse

Richard Nixon: "I am not a crook."
Larry Craig: "I am not gay."
David Koci: "I am not a dirty player."

Posted by: large23220

Tiger Woods : I am not a cheetah

Posted by: Capsfannmiss | December 17, 2009 6:13 PM

Bill Clinton: "I am not a cigar smoker."

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 17, 2009 6:42 PM | Report abuse

I still think that there are Canaidan elitists in the NHL thtat suspended Ovechkin so their "Syd the kid" could get ahead in scoring, I am that jaded. Since he was born in Moscow not Moosejaw, Don Cherry and the rest of the elitists have led a campaign personally against him. For Ovie to be suspended 2 games for an accident, and this goon who is usually on the ice for 3 minutes a game delibertraley creams someone in the back and not get suspended is outfrickinrageous.

I am p&^^^$ed

Posted by: craigjtmp | December 17, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

My solution on all this would be to start by regulating the size of the shoulder pads. Make them smaller, like they were in the 30s. The only reason to wear large pads is so you can check with impunity. Smaller pads means more positional checking like Calle Johansson used to do. The giant pads they wear means the guy doing the checking hits with his pads into the other player where he doesn't have pads.

I really can't believe there wasn't a suspension. It was a head shot. I hope McPhee goes ballistic.

Colin Campbell REALLY is in the Doofus Brigade, isn't he?

Posted by: tominfl1 | December 17, 2009 6:48 PM | Report abuse

So explain to me why it takes this long to suspend a worthless player and takes no time for the league to suspend Ovechkin. Hmmmm maybe its because Ovy's hit was all over SC and the league can't afford to have bad press. Good job guys. Just get it done.

Posted by: blanknerc | December 17, 2009 6:48 PM | Report abuse

So explain to me why it takes this long to suspend a worthless player and takes no time for the league to suspend Ovechkin.

Posted by: blanknerc

They're not even suspending him, period. All I can say is RIDICULOUS. They are not at all consistent with their punishments. I want to hear what BB has to say.

Posted by: rachel216 | December 17, 2009 6:55 PM | Report abuse

Tom, I recommend Campbell for a promotion.

We could be headed for a "law of the jungle" period. Flyers v. Pens tonight - I imagine Carcillo will be licking his chops.

Posted by: zmega | December 17, 2009 6:59 PM | Report abuse

First off, big props to greg for getting me and my kids FRONT ROW tix to the game tuesday night! My season tix were 4 rows behind the net in the Cap Center so even me myself had yet to sit in the 1st row. Thanks Greg!

Secondly - Avs fans were blowing up the talk radio shows out here yesterday asking who in the heck THESE guys were that they just played because they're gonna win the Cup! It's fascinating to me that these fans weren't even selling out when the team got here. It was later in the year after they got Roy and some other players when they started selling out and of course they won the Cup the 1st yr they were here. Tuesday night they were 4,000+ SHORT of a sell out! And they call themselves fans. Do they not realize they have a very good team here? Oh yeah, how could I forget the lady I ran into at the popcorn stand that said something about my jersey and then said, "1/2 this place is filled with Caps fans"! Yes folks it's good to be a Caps fan. It been very heartbreaking getting here but we're here none the less.

Posted by: pokerfaceI208 | December 17, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse


Yes, Campbell earned his way into the Doofus Brigade with the ruling on Koci, assuming he hadn't already earned his way earlier.

Posted by: CapsFan75 | December 17, 2009 7:11 PM | Report abuse

And thanks to the Caps PR guy (can't state his name) for getting me arena passes so me and my boys could meet players after the game. We saw GMGM (wow he's small), Jose, Brooks, Fehr and Tom Poti. While I wasn't the biggest fan of Fehr he did skate over to me and my boys and flipped a puck over for each of them so now my kids like him. I do as well. It's these types of things that kids never forget. It made their night and mine really! So just a fantastic night all the way around. We were very well represented here in CO and we usually are.

I did hear one idiot fan yell out (after our 5th goal) "Zero Cups"! Normally I would open my mouth and yell something back at him but I think his comment speaks for itself what an idiot he is. Sure would be nice to root for a team where the previous year they won the Presidents trophy. There's a lot of reasons I can't root for the Avs and it's idiotic comments by fans that are the #1 reason. Gee I wish we'd play Colorado for the Cup!

Posted by: pokerfaceI208 | December 17, 2009 7:14 PM | Report abuse

@greggwiggins: While listening to NHL Home Ice yesterday they announced that Gary won't be back to do his show until after the holidays. I guess it is move the 6pm EST also. Just case you or anyone else wants to call into the show next month.

Posted by: fanohock1 | December 17, 2009 7:15 PM | Report abuse

Lastly- I recorded the Colorado broadcast and watched it today. For any of you who have heard Peter McNabb (McBlabb) do color you know what I'm talking about. A buddy of mine I've played hockey together for years laugh because McBlabb thinks Duchesne and Stewart are bigger stars than Ovechkin! So anyway they didn't really say a whole lot that stood out but they continuously talked about how good a TEAM we were. That even though OV didn't scroe we still put up 6 and we average 4.5 GPG w/o OV in the lineup. The thing that did stand out however is that Mike Haynes who does the play by play asked McBlabb who he's rather start a team with and he couldn't answer it. Of course the question was in regards to OV or the baby. McBlabb couldn't answer it because he wanted to include an Av player I'm sure. Haynes said he'd throw Kovalchuk in the discussion and McBlabb quickly dismissed that. McBlabb did state however that OV would see more tix with his style of play of Sid. Really?

Posted by: pokerfaceI208 | December 17, 2009 7:21 PM | Report abuse

The NHL didn't waste anytime suspending Ovechkin. WTF?

Posted by: hessone | December 18, 2009 8:25 AM | Report abuse

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