When Is A Punch Not a Punch?

Totally ridiculous in my books the inconsistency in reffing for post play and even in play unnecessary roughness standards.
We saw Mack get thrown out of a game for a single punch in the first game today.
We also saw Begelton throw a punch - and get a UR penalty.

What was the difference? Why does Montreal lose a premier receiver and Calgary’s receiver goes on playing?

Nothing against any team or anything but it should be simple enough to make the same actions have the same consequences, in every game.


Piggybacking off that, if the league now decides to suspend him one game, that benefits the next team that Calgary plays, not the actual victim of the punch, as if they’d ejected him on the spot.


That’s the part that chaps my ass about this. Fines are OK BUT the command centre is handcuffed on the play because the penalties are not in the realm of things they allowed to rule on.

My thought is the command centre should be able to rule on any player safety issue on the field, end of question.
Similar to rugby we should have both the referee and the command centre discuss mitigation - so we can hear reasoning as to why or why not it results in a penalty.


Very true. And the league to my knowledge has never suspended someone for throwing one punch in an altercation and they shouldn’t in most cases. The proper penalty includes an immediate ejection. That could be added to in appropriate circumstances such as the punch being particularly vicious and/or against a helmetless player and/or at the end of a game when an ejection is meaningless. Usually the proper penalty should be an immediate ejection. I have no idea why the command center isn’t able to rule on this as they should.


That’s a big part of my point. Player safety is player safety and if you are serious about it then be serious about it and allow the guy with the replay to help make those calls.
As big a part is that they need to change what happens when a foul is caught post game.

Maybe something like the player in question or a player of the oppositions choice has to sit out a portion of the game in the teams next meeting. In some ways the same as a fine as many players get paid per snap played, but also a penalty in that you lose that player for part of a game.


I can’t pretend to understand rugby when I watch it, but one thing I did love was the fact the ref’s mic is always on and the constant communication they have between themselves and the players in the field.


I like it too. The problem in football is the players off color language needs cleaning up before we could do that.

However - it sure would be nice if they let us in on reviews and command centre communications.


If a player gets suspended after a game, the team was the victim of the foul, should have the option to have the offending player sit out the next game against them instead of the next game whoever the oppent is.

If the two teams are not scheduled to play again, then the suspension would be the next game(s) on the schedule.


Say what you want about the XFL with all their gimmicks and stuff, they 100% got this part right by allowing cameras and sound into the command centre to actually see/hear how decisions were arrived at. You could agree/disagree with the outcome but at least you understood how the command centre worked….


Where it makes sense is the stuff like PI. Because in Rugby they step through the call and there is little doubt as to why they made the call they made. Matter of fact when they go to the off field, there is little doubt when they show the replay even as to what the call will be.

Calls are so consistent when they run through the first good angle you can call it before they even step through.
If the CFL did the same everybody, DB’s receivers everyone knows where the line is and we don’t get “mystery calls” where we don’t know why. At the same time it puts more onus on the officials to be consistent with what is being called in every game.

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I for one would like to see more influence from the CC. They can see the replays officials on the field can’t. Give them wider jurisdiction, but for goodness sakes, do it fast.


Mack was engaged with an Argo, covering several yards - he held the face mask for about 10 yards. Mack then threw the Argo player to the ground using a wrestling throw.

Mack got up and threw a punch. As the melee ensued, Mack stiff armed an official (probably unintentional).

Begelton threw a single punch.

There was a difference in what they did to earn their penalties.

I didn’t see what Mack did but accept your version. I did see Begelton’s punch.

I think what some including myself were saying is that a punch should be an automatic ejection for every player.

If the actions of one player who threw the punch (like Mack here) were worse than another player in another game or the same game who threw a punch, that should be immaterial to being ejected. Rather if one player compounded the punch with other offences that should be a matter for post game supplemental discipline if warranted.


Yes. Let’s say someone did a suspension worthy offense (let’s say the offender was on the Schooners) to a team fighting to get into the playoffs. Let’s say the Ticats.
If the player is suspended for their next game and it’s against the RedBlacks, that could end up hurting the Ticats, as the weakened Schooners team would be easier for the RedBlacks to beat.


Everybody is on point here and for once as long as it lasts, it seems like all of us agree on this one.

Otherwise to answer the question of the title of the post, I’m going to draw the line in favour of this guy.

I hereby rule in his favour after an apparent very rough day such that he wanted to punch that fearsome tiger’s lights out.

Otherwise on the field even one attempted punch, forget the landing, is zero tolerance. Get it right CFL.

Cat Fighting GIF - Cat Fighting Tiger - Discover & Share GIFs


Best thing about this scenario would be that the offending player is out of the picture, reducing any possible Bertuzzi/Moore like incidents.


Hmmm…When is a punch not a punch? That is a tough one. I’m thinking a punch is not a punch in the ordinary sense :

  1. When people are clocking out at work and they punch their time card
  2. When a punch and die set punches out holes to make washers
  3. When the puppet show “Punch and Judy” is being aired
  4. When one is feeling punch drunk
  5. When a person is having a glass of fruit punch
  6. When one is looking for the punch bowl

In football though - it’s not needed at all. Nor should it be tolerated.

Because if this is OK and that isn’t - you end up where hockey is. Where guys get mobbed and beaten for making a good play or a clean hit.

The disqualification penalties have been good, but now it’s like everyone gets one “free pass” if you will. What they need to do is to start handing out single penalties instead of trying to hand out matching penalties. Because when it hurts your team - is when you begin to stop that stuff.


Bang on Squish (I’ve always wanted to start a sentence that way, but never had the opportunity) egregious behavior should not only affect the player, depending on how egregious the play was it should also affect the team, coach and as high as the Cap or free agency and expulsion. Of course reach the highest levels I would suggest that the activitie would need to be repetitive and deemed intentional… that’s all I got.