"You think I'll get five games for this? You're outta your mind." (Photo: Rob Grabowski/US Presswire)

Everyone knew the hit was dirty. Everyone knew a suspension was coming, especially when it was learned Daniel Sedin would miss time.

But five games for a first-time offender for retaliation on a similarly dirty – though less lethal – hit? Given other recent dirty plays around the league – *cough* Shane Doan *cough* – with lesser penalties, I’m a little more than surprised Duncan Keith was leveled with this type of suspension.

Even player safety czar Brenden Shanahan admitted he took into consideration Keith had never been suspended in his seven seasons in the NHL. If that’s the case, what would’ve happened to Keith had he slipped up previously?

From Shanahan:

Regardless of Keith’s assertion that the intent on this play was to impede Sedin’s progress as opposed to a retaliation for an earlier hit, Keith’s hit was still dangerous, reckless and caused injury.

If Keith did say it wasn’t about retaliation, he’s lying. It was. However, this outrageous penalty seems it was levied by Shanahan due to to the players involved, rather than the play itself. Five games for someone who has been playing clean for seven years doesn’t make a whole lot of sense.

More importantly, Keith will miss games against Nashville, New Jersey, St. Louis, Nashville again, and Minnesota. He’s eligible to return April 5 against the Wild before the April 7 season finale at Detroit.

So, that’s that. Too harsh? Doesn’t matter, unfortunately. Nakis will be by in the morning to discuss this further.