More Penalties Than Points: Jacob Trouba's Antics Called out by Andreas Athanasiou

Published December 5, 2022 at 4:41 PM

Maybe it's something in the water at the NHL, but lately it seems as if those who are not producing (or saving) goals, use aggravated aggression as their go-to tactic. Maybe they think it will spark something inside of them, or their team? Maybe. But it's not working for Jordan Binnington, and it certainly didn't work for Jacob Trouba, the other night. Over the years, many NHLers have run into issues with Trouba - usually stemming from getting run into by the man, himself. This season is no different, and recently acquired Blackhawk, Andreas Athanasiou has decided to speak up.

In a 5-2 Rangers loss against the Blackhawks, the 28 year old New York captain recorded 0 pointsbut 12 PIM. Oddly enough, none of those came directly from this nasty hit on Athanasiou:

He did get minutes for fighting Toews, but not for the hit, itself, which was deemed «clean». While most hockey players' skills revolve around doing something with the puck that will help their team win, Trouba's main skill seems to be balancing on that line between clean and dirty hits. He is so good at getting away with hits that might not be technically «illegal», but they're certainly not necessary and he will most definitely hit with as much as his elbow and as high as he possibly can while still flying under the radar. No one in Chicago is going forget what happened to Jujhar Khaira last year, including Khaira.

According to Athanasiou, it seems like given the choice between going for the puck, or going for a hit, Trouba will always go for the hit, even when an opportunity to get the puck is right in front of him. From an interview with Ben Pope of The Chicago Sun-Times:

«It was a weird play,» Athanasiou said. «The puck was there. He could've made a play on the puck. Instead it's like [he had] an intent to try to hurt somebody. He's been known to do that. You have to know when he's on the ice, and he got me there.»

The statistics support Athanasiou's theory, because in the 26 games Trouba has played this season, he has 6 points and 31 PIM. Of the 623 games he's played in his entire career, the Michigan native has been assessed 499 minutes of penalties. And those are just the ones where he got caught.

Thankfully no one was hurt on Saturday, and the Hawks got the upper hand by winning. That's not always the case, as proven by the Stanley Cup playoffs last year, where Trouba elbowed Penguins Captain Sidney Crosby in the head, taking him out of Games 5 and 6. The Penguins, who had been ahead in the series 3-1, ended up losing the final 3 games.

Trouba has been badly injured, himself, and had to be stretchered off the ice in his 8th NHL game with Winnipeg, consequently missing the next 17 due to a neck injury.


You'd think because of that, he wouldn't be so prone to putting others in that same position, but that's clearly not the case. It's unclear what, if anything, it will take to change the 28 year old captain's tactics, so until then, the rest of the NHL just needs to heed Athanasiou's advice.
December 5   |   119 answers
More Penalties Than Points: Jacob Trouba's Antics Called out by Andreas Athanasiou

Thoughts on Jacob Trouba's many, many, many hits?

That's hockey!4134.5 %
He should be penalized more.2823.5 %
Most are ok, but some are too much.1613.4 %
Get in loser, we're going headhunting.3428.6 %
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