NHL wimps out on Downie


As I predicted, the NHL didn’t have the onions to discipline Tampa Bay’s Steve Downie for leaving the bench to join — and escalate — an altercation with the Rangers.

To me, it’s clear as day that Downie sat on the boards during the whole Artem Anisimov-Vinny Lecavalier incident Thursday, then motioned for Dominic Moore to come to the bench so that he could leave the bench and join the fracas. And when he did, he absolutely escalated the melee, which was just calming down.

Yet the NHL jumped through hoops as it always does, and simply fined Downie (max $2,500). I’m not sure Downie deserved the 10-game automatic suspension since A) there were no fighting penalties assessed — blame the officials for that — and B) he didn’t really start a fight himself.

But the fact that the NHL and the officials allow a player to leave the bench to join an altercation is a dangerous precedent that will/could lead to more incidents, and maybe even a bench-clearing brawl.

Here’s the rule:

Rule 70 – Leaving the Bench

70.1 Leaving the Bench – No player or goalkeeper may leave the players’ or penalty bench at any time during an altercation or for the purpose of starting an altercation. Substitutions made prior to the altercation shall be permitted provided the players so substituting do not enter the altercation.

Some suggested beforehand that Brendan Shanahan would go soft because his former teammate and buddy Steve Yzerman is the Tampa Bay GM. I doubt (hope) that wasn’t so. But the NHL always seems to find reasons to not enforce its rules in these cases.

Very weak, in my opinion.

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  1. stranger nation on

    Re-post: carped/BANJed

    If Dubi is not scoring in last night’s blow out, when will he score again?

    +/- goals for season

    Dubi – 12

    Avery – 6

    EC – 5 (SOs don’t count in totals)

    Hags – 12

    Mitchell – 8

    Boyle – 6

    Prust – 6

    Rupp – 6

  2. repost:

    there is nothing better than super fresh cinnamon raisin bagel with cream cheese and lox, chased down by a really nice dark roast freshly brewed Juan Valdes coffee. Nothing…

    do i get a lunch point?

  3. Interesting choice, @CCCP@ Not many people go for Lox against a Cinnamon Raisin bagel. I happen to believe in it and I commend you for standing up for what you believe in.

  4. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    Matty has a point!! The team is better if boyle is scoring, or prust….I guess my point to the whole thing is dubi isn’t really scoring (goals anyhow) and he isn’t, IMHO, he should be contributing in other ways (standing up for teammates, throwing his body around with reckless abandon, playing like he wants to get more ice time…).

  5. Well, he has stood up for teammates, Wick. And he’s been really good killing penalties.

    My point is, if he starts to produce offense and gets put with Richards and Callahan, where he should be, then Fedotenko drops down to a checking-line role and the overall depth of the team is much, much better.

  6. repost;

    Maybe it speaks to how universally recognized Stepan is as a terrific young player that Avery is mentioned so much more than he is, even after a game like last night.

    I just gotta say, this kid is a very unique player, can’t remember seeing many like him at all.
    He’s so deceptive, and so well versed in the finer points of the game at 21 it’s unreal.

    Just when you think he’s about to get hammered, he pre-empts Mike Green with a shot and busts his nose. And just when you think he’s got nowhere to go, he goes end-to-end and finishes like he’s Marcel Dionne!

    And he’s been feeding Gaborik like a machine ever since they were put together. Great stuff.


    No time frame for return after concussion symptoms

    rosby, who has missed the Pittsburgh Penguins’ last two games, said Monday that he has had concussion-like symptoms for nearly a week – or since a 3-1 loss to Boston last Monday. Tests show that Crosby has not had another concussion, but he says he is going by how he feels — and, right now, he feels it is better to rest.

    The Penguins’ captain is not sure when he will practice or play again, but he cautioned that he feels much better than he did when he was diagnosed with a concussion nearly a year ago.



  8. DuckBill PLA-t-pus on

    any new informacion on Sydney Crosby’s condition? Michael Sour?

    Aside, I think Dubinsky is already showing signs of being ready to return to form. He skated real hard last night. Won several battleships in the corners, and seems to be handling puck more comfortably. Big seondary half coming from him I thinking.

  9. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    I am picking up what you are putting down for sure. I guess, in truth, I am just really disappointed in VV2 and the way he plays. He seems like a classic underachiever to me. He has size and skill, but when he isn’t producing with the skill, he doesn’t really use his size (kinda like boyle, the difference between the two is boyle doesn’t really “talk” a lot in scrums and dubi yaps this big game, but rarely if ever backs it up) the way he should or in a capacity to help the team overtly.

    I am not sold on his defencive prowess at all. I think the PK would be just as good with any other forward in his spot sans EC.

  10. Dubinsky has 5th most assists (11) even though he hasn’t gotten much PP time and has been stuck with 4th liners for the last month or so. Lot of positives still going with him.

  11. DuckBill PLA-t-pus on

    may i say something that most of you won’t not like? I think it time for Nacional Hockey League to expand to international size ices. There I said it. Yes, I did. I know you guys want the rock ’em sock ’em robots, but duckbill prefers player longergevity and to display what is the real beautiful game and now that sissy game of soccer.

  12. I was thinking that was gonna be a tough one to enforce/make an example. The incident happened right after a goal. Linesmen are not watching who comes on or off, so that is one instance when line changes are usually ignored. So, I don’t see how anyone could say Downie ABSOLUTELY shouldn’t have been on the ice. He may have “escalated” things, but it was really nothing more than a rough. I would argue Stamkos’ actions were far worse.

    Tough one. I can live with just a fine.

  13. Oh and Duck- I have been saying that for AGES!!! The rink needs to be larger, the pads need to have ALL HARD PLASTIC REMOVED (except for shinguards, cups, and helmets), and the rules on slowing opponents down (clutch & grab) have to be revisited. I believe that a Dman should be allowed to “slow down” opposing forecheckers when their defensive partners are vulnerable.

  14. cw, watch the video. downie comes on after the altercation calms. not even a matter of coming on after the goal. He motions for Moore to come to the bench as the altercation is stopping, then goes directly into it.

    Terrible about Crosby. Seriously.

  15. And I would consider shutting down Staal for the year. Let him get healthy, and use the injury exemption to allow cap space for a replacement.

  16. DuckBill PLA-t-pus on

    very good points, CW…i agreeing with you. As much as it looks like I’m a Sydney Crosby homer. I can attest to you that Duckbill is a Rangers’ (no Texas) fan, but there is nothing good for a league losing its top players. How can we get what CW saying to the NHL attention? CW, maybe do nice blog post and we all send @reply to NHL players and peoples.

  17. perhaps the lack of discipline for Downie suggests that Shanahan finds most of the fault for the incident with Anisimov.

  18. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    just for cpmparables here, avery was 7th or 8th on the team with assists last season with far less ice time than many ahead of him. While I would love to see dubi have a 200 point season for us (as carp said, anyone who is scoring a lot is helping the team…paraphrasing a bit), I think he is a bit overrated by many, kind of like another guy that makes around 4 mil (technically).

  19. They have got to get some of the Zebra’s off the ice. Linesman do NOT need to be on the ice. They might be more effective if they were _above_ the ice anyways

  20. Carp,
    Downie obviously committed some kind of infraction. He got fined. But according to the rule you posted, and seeing how it was right after a goal, doesn’t the incident fall into a bit of a grey area? You bring up a great point about Shanny/Yzerman relationship.

    Did Shanny release a Twitter video re:Downie?

  21. Very disappointing that Downie was not suspended. It could lead to a similar but slightly different situation a la Milan Lucic and Jordin Tootoo hitting Ryan Miller. Both were worthy of suspension, but Tootoo was the only one to sit due to the reasoning of Miller being in the crease. Nevermind that you can’t hit the goalie deliberately in any situation. As Carp said, no fighting majors were assessed (big cop out by referees, especially with Dubi and MAB throwing bare hands), Moore was going to the bench, and Downie was already sitting on the rail. Bottom line: Downie wasn’t listed as being on the ice on the official score sheet when the conflict ensued, so he should have been suspended. If 10 games is the minimum, so be it. Maybe Shanahan thought Downie was coming on the ice for Connolly, and it looks like Moore actually did come on for Connolly, since he is not on the sheet as being on the ice at the time of the goal, either. So there ya go.

  22. Rod,
    I am no geometry major, but I believe if you make the rink bigger, you actually have MORE rinkside seats. The NHL charge more for those seats to balance the costs of lost seats.

    Or they could just keep playing games in rinks that their athletes have out grown. Before you know it, the players will look like they are playing in the rinks in the movie Slapshot.

  23. Avery got an indefinite suspension for words and Downie gets nothin? Wow…..absolute bullcook if ya ask me

  24. Fat Guy in A Little Coat on

    Anyone thinks it’s possible for our D to go all year without showing signs of missing Stahl and now Sauer?

  25. Fair point, Wicky. I may discount that a little given the wacky lineups the Rangers had last year with all the injuries, but I understand where you are going with it. It was more to demonstrate that he is still bringing some scoring to the team, even if he isn’t actually scoring.

  26. Then we don’t have to worry about Avery scoring on him!

    (I don’t know how that joke works but it does make me chuckle)

  27. “there is nothing better than super fresh cinnamon raisin bagel with cream cheese and lox, chased down by a really nice dark roast freshly brewed Juan Valdes coffee”

    I actually had a cinnamon raisin bagel with cream cheese and some sugar cookie egg nog! Perfect!

    What are lox? Never heard of that!

    By the way, I do feel really bad for Crosby. His head is like DiPietro’s body. But, oh well, let’s play the Pens now!!!

  28. cw, they don’t announce fines.

    Orr, they didn’t make Enroth look like a HOF. But they made him look better than Six-or-More.

  29. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    Ok, so I need one of you really good numbers guys/gals to figure this out for me (and perhaps for the rest of us).

    Just for the sake of comparison and the dubi/avery/who the hell ever debate and “offencive productivity”. This season avery gets about 40% of the ice time that dubi does 17:22 minutes a game vs avery’s 7. dubi has played in 27 games and avery 15. It is safe to say for at least part of the time dubi has had better offencively skilled linemates and PP time (sorry, just funny to type that).

    Dubi has produced 12 pts and avery 3. Equating this out and if the games played total were the same avery would have 6 goals at this point (or 5 if we shoot low…not wide) with less than half the minutes played with less skilled linemates and more than likely no powerplay time.

    It would also be safe to say then, if avery were getting the same minutes as dubi at this point and the same linemates dubi was afforded (not to mention powerplay time), he would offencive statistically out producing VV2.

    This could be done with any player obviously (I just picked the post producing player for carp..You are welcome).

    Fortunately, it isn’t about stats in hockey!

  30. the Rangers D certainly doesn’t miss Marc Staal right now. if you think their current level will stand up for the rest of the season, they won’t miss him at all.

  31. good afternoon all! Anyone else see the boys’ fashion spread in the NY Post today? Very sweet, yet no Sweet 16 :)

    The call on Downie sure was for carcillo,

  32. Don’t really see how you can say there is grey area in regards to the rule. The fact that it happened right after a goal doesn’t matter. The only thing specified in the rule is “during an altercation.” The altercation can take place right after a goal, before the puck drop, end of a period, it doesn’t matter. If you are on the bench during a ruckus, you must stay on the bench. He left the bench during an altercation to join the altercation. Pretty clear rule violation to me and definitely worthy of more then a $2,500 fine(IMO). I’d make him sit a game or two; not 10. You can’t let other players think they can get away with just a slap on the wrist in a similar situation.

  33. I just realized that I don’t give a flying carcillo about what this piece of cooke Downie got.

    I do feel horrible about Crosby, though…He IS a hockey player.

  34. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    i hear ya, there are so many intangibles in hockey that it honestly is tough fully gauge a players contribution all the time.

    I just think for the opportunities VV2 is given, there are other players that are more deserving and would contribute more (across the board)by being moved up along on a line with cally and brich.

    I’d rather leave feds there.

  35. I also hope Rupp is back when we play Tampa next time. Bet there will be a lot of “lox” and “cinnamon raisin”….

  36. I also dislike this notion that we feel bad for Crosby because the NHL needs him. That’s bull-carcillo.

    I feel bad for him because he’s a player and his career is in jeopardy, and we should feel the same for any player in that situation. Maybe it’s more of a shame when a great player has his career threatened or shortened. But I don’t feel bad for the NHL. I feel bad for Crosby.

  37. Easy guys. Why would ORR need to know about Lox? It’s not in Ben & Jerry’s….yet. When it is he will be all over it!

  38. The Penguins offense certainly doesn’t miss Sidney Crosby right now. If you think their current level will stand up for the rest of the season, they won’t miss him at all.

  39. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    sorry…Voros Version 2, because everyone used to say voros could never stay on his skates and always fell down. Does anyone objectively watch dubi? He can’t stay on his skates and falls down every bit as much as voros.

  40. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    some of these people act like this game is played on ice or something and it is slippery….sheesh!!!

  41. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    I also feel bad for sid and any concussed player for that matter!!

    no argument there!

  42. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    At this current pace, we could have have 3 30 goal scorers…correct??

  43. Fat Guy in A Little Coat on

    Is flipping the puck high in the air out of your own zone a lost art, or is it that only our squad can’t do it?

  44. Leetchhalloffame on

    Lloyd – Rangers don’t miss Staal? Are you kidding? When healthy he’s one of the best d-men in the league. What team wouldn’t miss that? Think about how much more awesome their D would be with him in the lineup. How many more years do you think those immortals Woywitka and Stralman will be in this league?

  45. Jlone2Bubblehead on

    I am indeed loving the ride, but am wholly unimpressed. There is definitely room for improvement on this years team. I love how oppertunistic the team is and how much better the passing seems to be this year. Am I in the minority in believing that we desperately miss Staal???? and Saur for that matter? In my memory, December is a hard month for this club. Sometimes while in the offensive zone, they look kind of lost. especially if they have been cycling for a while. They seem to keep cycling until the D breaks it up or someone loses the puck. The effort is there, mostly, the lines are there, mostly, I just cant bring myself to believe them to be an elite force in the East just yet. Something is holding me back…..

  46. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    I do believe sir, I had a space between those 3’s you silly English Kuhnigette!

  47. Fat Guy in A Little Coat on

    Did anyone on this board ever catch one the pux that Fotiu chucked into the stands after the pre-game wram-ups?

  48. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    what’s up and congrats on the win saturday!

  49. Haven’t seen a good bench clearer since Broome Dusters Paul Stewart started a donny against Hershey.

  50. Brendan Can-t-ahan….nice job.

    The NHL along with their new sheriff is gutless when it comes to discipline.

    What a bunch of buffoons!

  51. Carp: For me part of my feelings about Crosby possibly looking at a very premature retirement is because as maddening as he can be at times, he’s fun to watch.

    He’s an excellent hockey player and entertaining and it’s the latter what’s it all about after all (meaning I’d rather watch him than some slug who gets 5 minutes of icetime a game because his role is to goon it up).

  52. Stamkos should have gotten fined, too. He was throwing sucker punches…

    And, how does Lecavalier walk away without a penalty?

    The Shanahammer is soft…

  53. Ya know, NYR, watching the video again I saw that Lecavalier may have skated at people but he was restrained by the Ref’s before he could really do anything. Artie got jumped by other players before Vinny was really involved. I am OK with him not getting a penalty I guess. I don’t get Dubi getting 4 instead of 5 and I do not, for the life of me, understand Artie getting 14PIMs.

    Why doesn’t the league just fine everyone that gets a game misconduct?

  54. I think game misconducts carry an automatic fine, Manny. But there were no game misconducts in that incident.

    Jim, like him or not, Crosby’s the best player in the game.

  55. I agree he started it (even though Artie kind of started it). I am just saying he didn’t really hit anyone. Just a fracas if you will.

  56. Well, yeah. Vinny was guy who took offense to what Artie did. If he ignores it, I doubt anything happens. Smart move by Vinny to wake his team up. But, you can’t just rush someone and start roughing….that’s at least a minor penalty…

  57. Ah! Thanks, ORR.

    NYR – am I wrong that Lecav never made it to the fracas? I think he was stopped by the ref’s before he could put his hands on anyone. I am probably wrong.

    New Headline: “Latona uses power for good!”

  58. I am proud that Latona is no longer handing out points willy nilly. Now that we are in the season it must become more difficult to achieve lunch point status.

  59. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    Need to use the soft shanahammer when playing whackamole—>

  60. Carp – do you think we will be shocked by 24/7 focusing on our team? Or will it be kind of vanilla for us?

  61. “I think Bigfoot is blurry, that’s the problem. It’s not the photographer’s fault. Bigfoot is blurry, and that’s extra scary to me. There’s a large, out-of-focus monster roaming the countryside. Run, he’s fuzzy, get out of here.” – Mitch Hedberg

  62. we should all be proud of His Carp-ness today.

    watched Torts press conference after panthers game
    at blueshirtsunited.com

    and Torts was very pleased with the question
    Carp asked
    about the team being proud of its record
    of back-to-back games.

    Congrats Carp!
    keep up the good work here and there

  63. Devils make minor trade for defense help:
    TGfireandice Tom Gulitti
    Devils trade Fraser and Pelley and 2012 7th pick to Anaheim for D Curtis Foster and G Timmo Pielmeier

  64. Real_ESPNLeBrun Pierre LeBrun
    Terry Murray relieved of his coaching duties in LA. John Stevens interim head coach

  65. >>>Christmas has come early! Candice Swanepoel doing a little Christmas jig

    WooHoo!! That’s quite a booty on that young lady, ORR! Yummy, yummy yummy!

  66. Paul in sunrise on

    Yes. Got a Futiu puck. Drilled the seat next to me. I was 13ish. First row yellow seats visitors goal line behind bench/corner. Awesome.

  67. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    I caught a Domi puck after warmups …I forget who they played that night… That puck sits on my desk….

  68. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    so, does the crosby kunitz collision remind any of you of the lafontaine keane (or was it errey) collision?

  69. HageLinCalStepanlahan on

    wait… no nudity on the 24/7. we gotta read about these dudes drooling over the model flavah of the month, and us ladies get nothing on HBO! Damn you NHL ;-)

    THen again, NOT seeing Scott Hartnell in the all together is probably a good thing

  70. Only a matter of time until Murray was fired. I guess it’s good for him because he gets to go enjoy Christmas.

  71. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    I think there is enough avery “drooling” or “flavah” drooling here for the ladies and LW’s secretary!


  72. If there aren’t at least any shirts off in the locker room, I’m cancelling HBO :) Off to set DVR so I don’t forget….

  73. Grief grief! On Dolanvision, no less, the show’s title is “24/7 Flyers” and there’s no mention of the Rangers in the brief info…..WTB!!!!!!

  74. HageLinCalStepanlahan on

    and wick, i never recall any of the ladies commenting on specific body parts as ORR and ya bunch of dirrrrty ole men do about these models lol!!! ;-)

  75. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    I wonder if Torts will prance around le natural… Prolly hung like a hebrew national..

  76. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    I’m still trying to figure out how leino only got one game for elbowing and the bahama bomba got three!!

  77. Fat
    I got a Fotiu puck but not one he threw upstairs. Also got a Pierre LaRouche and years later a Adam Graves all in the last row of the red seats. But the best was when Edmonton came in and got the Great ones puck. Last row in reds but down the visitors side with my buddy who never was to a game. Wayne threw it right at him and at the last second I reached over and grabbed it from him. Lol. He was hot but didn’t stay that way not a big hockey guy. The next year my brother lost it on the pond playing. Karma I did get a game puck at a devils game and my boy still has it, I think.

  78. no way yzerman fires boucher. way too early in tenure.

    how the hell we lose to this garbage team. there d is awful

  79. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    yes, who is ole ole ole ooooooooooollllllleee ole ole???

    I was just kidding, I’m sorry!

  80. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    Speaking of the kubina fight, if I am a rangers D man, I’m flat out embarrassed if I don’t drop the gloves when hank is hit after kubina did!

  81. jpg’s sister…hey! Indeed I did! Fashion fabs!

    wicky, just cause you’re all 26, doesn’t mean you’re not dirty :) And ORR, fyi, lox is salmon, but different (cured, brined or whatever) but try it, you’ll love it. Just not on a cinnamon bagel, that’s just wrong! Cinnamon + bagel = blech.

    Get a poppy or an everything….Prust saying.

  82. Carp
    i know you have the post game audio
    just didn’t get a chance to listen to it that evening
    and happened to see the Torts presser
    via thenyrangers tweet

    btw Carp
    what recording equipment do you use?
    i still use an old school cassette for phone interviews
    and was using an mp3 recorder for on-site matters
    but it’s been treating me something terrible recently
    and was always a pain to download
    i’m looking for recorder for interviews — phone and/or in-person
    with the possibility of uploading online.

  83. I don’t want you to root for me. I just want you to feel badly for me! So you’re doing a great job.

    I just wanted people to know I was trying since @CCCP@ whines that some of us aren’t trying hard enough or something. Not you, obv.

  84. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    i’ll let you know…as far as the league goes, you win because you rotate your goalies on the waiver wire so much!!


  85. jpg, I still use the old, plug-in-the-wall, big cassette tape, hook-into-the-phone recorder for phone interviews. It’s great and there is no better option.

    In person, I have an Olympus digital recorder with a tiny R-L microphone attachment. Yes, it’s a bit complicated to upload stuff to the ‘net. Otherwise, it’s fine.

  86. I’m all for free speech, but it’s time to outlaw players’ tweets. Really.

    In the summer we had to endure MDZ and his zits;
    last week it was Dubi & his video games & sushi.

    No mas. Please.

    There you have it, my grumpy comment for the night.

  87. Wow, saw this headline earlier but didnt get chance to look into it.

    The dude who owns the Nets is challenging Putin for the presidency of Russia.

    Back when I followed that stuff I read an eye-opening piece on Prokhorov by Matt Tiaibbi.

    Worth a Google if interested.

  88. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Rod – matt taibbi is a brilliant writer. rolling stone gives him free reign and he never disappoints….of course, if you are a neo-Nazi you won’t agree with but…. You can’t please everyone.

  89. Reason I mentioned it is because Prokhorov does have a hockey link;
    supposedly he was looking to buy the Devils, or was being courted to get involved.

    And it tied in with the whole John MacLean firing (on Dec. 23rd, which, as the Devs all-time leading scorer, was the equivalent of the Rangers firing Rod Gilbert just before Xmas)
    and Kovalchuk.

    Too long to get into but pretty unbelievable stuff.

  90. It’s a shame about Crosby. In all seriousness. I think they should shut both Staal and Sauer down for the year. Not saying the D will hold up the way it’s currently constructed but they’re going to have to make a trade sooner or later for the blueline. They might as do so while protecting a big part of the future of the blueline

    btw- this sucks for my fantasy team too. -_-

  91. Hey, had any of you guys heard about this before? This is from Brooks’ article for today:

    *Richards could have come to the Rangers last year at the trade deadline. But, according to an individual with knowledge of the situation, he declined to waive his no-move clause when he learned of the bounty (three Grade A assets) the Stars were demanding in return, not wanting the Blueshirts to be diluted upon his arrival.
    And so Broadway would wait for Richards, who has recorded 25 points (11-14) with the promise of better things ahead.*

    Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/rangers/brad_star_shines_yB0EeKPohdJtrU7yRMU0zN#ixzz1gOci2SZr

  92. Gilroy has played pretty steady D for the Bolts from day one. He is very defensive minded and he will let one go from the point now and then, but he always gets back
    to maintain his defense…His goaltenders are both
    pretty shaky though. He hasn’t made many mistakes during the games that I’ve watched, and I’ve paid close attention to him. He is well accepted down there
    and seems to have found a home. He throws very good pin point passes to both attacking forwards, and other D’s.

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