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Keith's hit on Daniel Sedin reignites rivalry

Thursday, 03.22.2012 / 12:54 PM / News

By Brian Hedger - NHL.com Correspondent

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Keith's hit on Daniel Sedin reignites rivalry
The war of words between the Vancouver Canucks and Chicago Blackhawks ratcheted up another notch on Wednesday night.
CHICAGO -- The war of words between the Vancouver Canucks and Chicago Blackhawks ratcheted up another notch on Wednesday night at the United Center, but what was left unsaid about Daniel Sedin might be most important.

Sedin, who was knocked out of Chicago's 2-1 overtime victory late in the first period by an elbow by Blackhawks defenseman Duncan Keith, was unavailable for comment and his status for Thursday's game in Dallas was unknown.

"I got a lot of respect for a lot of guys on their team. There's been things said from their room before, but not from him. He's always been good, but I don't know if it was too [many] emotions playing against us or what it was. Again, it's too bad. I had a lot of respect for him." -- Henrik Sedin on Duncan Keith

"He will be re-evaluated [Thursday]," Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault said. "He was taken out of the game obviously. Everybody saw the head shot there, so re-evaluate [Thursday] and I'll know more from there."

What did Vigneault think of the hit, which earned Keith an elbowing minor?

"Deliberate, principal point of contact, everything you're trying to take out of the game," he said. "I expected a major, and I got a minor -- so we'll let the League deal with it. You saw the hit, you didn't see a puck near the hit. … the League will do what they have to do."

Twin brother Henrik said that after Daniel Sedin hit Keith earlier in the first period, the Hawks defenseman insinuated that he would get retribution at some point.

"It shouldn't be a part of the game, especially when you hear comments, too, from him, before it happened ... and then they do it," Henrik said. "That's too bad."

Henrik was asked if he was surprised that Keith, the 2010 Norris Trophy winner and a player who has never been suspended, was in the middle of the controversy.

"Yeah, a little bit," Henrik, the Canucks captain, told NHL.com. "I got a lot of respect for a lot of guys on their team. There's been things said from their room before, but not from him. He's always been good, but I don't know if it was too [many] emotions playing against us or what it was. Again, it's too bad. I had a lot of respect for him."

Keith, who said he hadn't watched a replay of the hit, expressed remorse for the injury and tried to explain what happened to reporters afterward.

"I'm not trying to hurt anybody," he said. "I hope he's OK. He's one of their best players. He needs to be on the ice. But the puck was up in the air and from what I remember, I'm trying to close my gap and have a good gap on him. Right at the last second, he moves forward and I don't know where the puck is. It's fast and like I said, I hope he's OK. I haven't seen the replay. I need to see it again."

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