Kessel Swings His Stick Not Once, But Twice – Whether or not he connected, and whether or not it was in self-defense (the first one, not the second), brandishing your stick in such a manner as a weapon is definitely contravening the rules and could be (and was) construed as an attempt to injure.Attempt to injure, huh? Later, in the same article:
As of now, however ridiculous it sounds in the real world, punching someone of any size with your fist is not considered an attempt to injure in the NHL.Yeah.
That said, I'm yet to read anyone really standing up and enthusiastically justify the thuggery that was a part of this "game". It is all back-of-the-hand justification, half-assed references to "The Code", and generally not providing a ringing endorsement.