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CHEAP SHOT

I'm writing about the season-ending injury to Donald Audette. I saw the game, I saw the hit. I read the newspaper and watched the news. Were Audette, myself and friends I talked to, the only people who witnessed the hit that were even slightly upset by it? It was obvious Edmonton defenseman Craig Muni was going to lay Audette out. Audette was coming in blind and a clean, straight-up check would have accomplished Muni's goal, to knock Audette senseless. Yet Muni, fully aware Audette did not see him, had to go low -- right at the knees.

How can so many professionals view this as a clean check? Why is a similar block in football illegal? Because it ends careers. Knees are knees aren't they? Now instead of having a somewhat smarter rookie, the Buffalo Sabres have a large, maybe even unfillable hole on right wing.

It's obvious we can't turn to NHL officials for justice (here's Vaive's wheelchair scenario in action), yet there is a basic right vs. wrong issue here. What Muni did was wrong. If the officials will not deter this type of action then it's up to the players. Unfortunately, however, we come up short again here. Apparently Buffalo doesn't have the toughness or character to stand up for one another. In reference to the Vaive/Sweeney, Turgeon/Nilan incidents and now Audette, Buffalo's giving the message that it's OK to take shots at our stars.
GREG PERSHYN
Buffalo

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