Alexei Ponikarovsky suspended 2 games

The good news for the Pittsburgh Penguins is that Alexei Ponikarovsky will be available for the beginning of the playoffs. The bad news is that the Ukrainian winger has been suspended for two games because of his hit on New York Islanders forward Josh Bailey. has the news.

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Alexei Ponikarovsky has been suspended for the final two games of the regular season for a hit from behind Thursday against the New York Islanders.

Early in the third period, Islander center Josh Bailey turned to play a puck in the Pittsburgh end. Ponikarovsky came directly from behind on Bailey and cross-checked him into the boards.

… Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and based on his average annual salary, Ponikarovsky will forfeit $21,813.48. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

Ponikarovsky will miss Saturday’s game at Atlanta and Sunday’s game at the Islanders.

The suspension seems about right. I discussed the hit and its possible repercussions earlier today, if you’re interested in such things. How do you feel about the league’s decision? Did the punishment fit the crime?

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    Kings, NHLPA announce settlement in Richards grievance

    Los Angeles Kings v New York Rangers

    The Los Angeles Kings announced today that they have “reached an agreement with Mike Richards to resolve the grievance filed in relation to the termination of his NHL Standard Players Contract. The terms are agreeable to all parties.”

    The club said that it will not be commenting further “on the terms” of the settlement.

    The NHLPA released a similar statement.

    It was reported earlier in the week that a settlement was close to being reached; however, it wasn’t clear what salary-cap penalties the Kings would incur.

    We’re starting to find out some details now:

    How the final numbers differ from what the Kings would have incurred if they’d bought Richards out will be interesting to see. And if there are differences, how will they be justified?

    Stay tuned.

    Report: Ex-NHLer Aaron Ward arrested for ‘assault on a female’ (Updated)

    Brad May, Kevin Hodson, Jiri Fischer, Aaron Ward

    Aaron Ward, a 16-year NHL veteran that appeared in over 800 career games, has been arrested for “assault on a female,” per WNCN.

    Ward was arrested on Friday in Cary, North Carolina and also charged with interfering with emergency communication, according to the report.

    Currently working as an analyst for TSN, Ward spent five years of his career in Carolina, helping the ‘Canes capture the Stanley Cup in 2006.

    Update: Per WRAL, Ward’s wife called 9-1-1 after the two had a confrontation around 1 p.m. ET. Police confirmed Ward was arrested at his home in Cary.

    According to the warrant for his arrest, he took away his wife’s phone.

    Because of the nature of his charges, Ward will spend a mandatory 48 hours in the Wake County jail. Anyone arrested on a domestic violence charge is held for 48 hours before bail is set.

    And here’s a statement from TSN: