From the “not that it really matters now” files: the NHL rescinded the major penalty incorrectly given to Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang in last night’s game against the New York Islanders. Here is the report, via Dave Molinari of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.
The National Hockey League has rescinded the major penalty that Penguins defenseman Kris Letang was assessed for a hit on New York Islanders forward Blake Comeau during the Penguins’ 3-2 overtime victory at the Consol Energy Center Friday night.
Letang got the major and a game misconduct for purportedly hitting Comeau in the head, a ruling the NHL overturned after reviewing replays of the incident.
Of course, unless Penguins GM Ray Shero manages to acquire a DeLorean, this announcement is little more than a formalized “my bad” from the league.
The Penguins still were forced to kill a five-minute major penalty, but luckily for the league and the Penguins, they ended up winning the game in overtime anyway. Considering Pittsburgh’s early season struggles, losing that game could have been a big blow and many of the team’s whiniest fans would probably cite that in conspiracy theories in the same way that they immortalize Max Talbot’s hand motions.
Letang is playing in tonight’s game anyway (which is currently tied 1-1 in the first intermission), so it’s all frozen water under the bridge, I’d say.
In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.
The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.
At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.
As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.
The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.
All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.
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?