Daniel Briere’s bad night against the Islanders on Saturday in which he started a fracas by cross checking Islanders forward Frans Nielsen in the head caught the eye of the NHL and they’ve suspended Briere for three games. The three games that Briere will miss out do lend some curiosity to the spin on the Wheel Of Justice that Briere got as he misses the Flyers game tonight against Carolina, as well as their game Thursday against the Rangers and Saturday’s rematch against the Islanders.
Compare that suspension to what happened with Chicago’s Niklas Hjalmarsson this year when his first game back after being suspended for a hit from behind on Buffalo’s Jason Pominville ended up being against Buffalo. Coincidental occurrences we’re sure, but while Hjalmarsson had to face off against the team he wronged in his first game back, Briere narrowly misses out on having to deal with the Islanders again right away in what’s sure to be a feisty game no matter what.
The NHL clearly didn’t feel the need to throw any fuel on the fire that’s sure to burn on Saturday when these two teams meet up again, and with Briere pulling a disgustingly reckless move the way he did, there’s little doubt that the Islanders would be looking to rough him up a bit. Of course, everyone in that game could be looking to rough each other up so there’s that too. Regardless, Saturday’s rematch figures to be worth keeping an eye on, we’ll just have to do it without a potential Briere sideshow.