NHL discipline czar Brendan Shanahan has announced there’ll be no additional discipline for Carolina defenseman Derek Joslin following this forearm shiver on Florida’s Kris Versteeg:
Here’s the ruling:
“Any time a player gets a hit to the head, we immediately look deeper into the play. Sometimes, the actions surrounding the hit to the head lead us to quickly make a decision that this is not worthy of the supplemental discipline process. This one was a difficult one for us. I decided in the morning that while I wasn’t sure whether or not there would be supplemental discipline, I was sure enough that I had more questions about the hIt and that a hearing process was necessary.
“It really came down to that I felt that Versteeg not only was stumbling forward, but also his head was moving both forward and laterally just prior to contact. I think that significantly contributed to the hit. (Versteeg’s) head is falling down and out as Joslin is making contact to Versteeg’s face.”
Versteeg is probably livid right now. He was angry the referees didn’t call a penalty on the play and I can’t imagine Shanahan letting Joslin off will quell that anger any.
That said, Shahanan had his reasons. The above explanation is fairly legit, and Joslin has just 43 penalty minutes in 77 career games (read: Historically, he’s a clean player.) He’s also never been fined or suspended at the NHL level.