When Milan Lucic of the Bruins helped ignite a line brawl of sorts against the Thrashers after taking a vicious hit from Freddy Meyer, which later saw Lucic sucker punch Meyer, it appeared that Lucic was heading towards an extended Christmas vacation courtesy of the NHL.
Today, the league weighed in on what they thought of Lucic’s actions and it appears they wanted just a little bit of money out of Lucic’s wallet. The league did not suspend Lucic for his sucker punch and instead fined him for his actions including $2,500 for the hit and another $1,000 for an obscene gesture towards the Atlanta bench.
We’d like to say it’s surprising that Lucic wasn’t suspended for his actions, but then again, this is the NHL where anything can happen when either Colin Campbell or Mike Murphy weigh in on these matters. Sucker punches have been given this same treatment before in the past and Bruins fans are likely to recall one such instance.
During the 2009 playoffs, Carolina’s Scott Walker sucker punched Bruins defenseman Aaron Ward in a similar manner and was only fined for his dirty punch. Walker would then go on to score the series-winning goal in Game 7 against Boston in that series. Bruins fans should be happy to know that in this case, the door does swing both ways and irrational punishment can work in their favor.