Cup finals show NHL still struggling with violence

BOSTON (AP) - Two players made two bad decisions in an instant, something that happens fairly often in the NHL. Boston's Nathan Horton watched his pass an instant too long, and Vancouver's Aaron Rome checked him an instant too late.

Both players' seasons ended in that instant during Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals. Horton dropped to the ice unconscious with his eyes open, motionless on his back with his gloved right hand reaching up frighteningly into empty space, while Rome was sent to the Canucks' dressing room under a vicious cascade of boos from Bruins fans.

The NHL is a volatile cocktail of big men with sticks skating swiftly over a confined ice surface, and those elements collided with devastating impact in the sport's biggest showcase Monday night.