According to Renaud Lavoie of RDS, Ottawa Senators forward Milan Michalek won’t face any disciplinary hearing for allegedly kicking Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi on Monday night.
Video evidence of the incident has been hard to come by. This replay shows Girardi reacting angrily with a fallen Michalek in the vicinity, but no conclusive evidence of a direct kick.
So, why so much fuss about the play? Some of it stems from a similar play involving Jeff Skinner and Scott Nichol earlier this season, when Skinner used his skate to push off Nichol:
As the video states, Skinner was suspended two games for the action.
ESPN New York reported earlier today the league planned on reviewing the Michalek-Girardi incident while TSN’s Darren Dreger tweeted the following:
Dreger later said that, upon further consideration, there is a major difference between the two incidents: Skinner was reacting to a hit along the boards while Michalek was at the bottom of a pile.
Update: Here’s the explanation from NHL.com.
Ottawa forward Milan Michalek will not face supplemental discipline for using his skate to shove Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi during a pile-up of players in the crease late in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals on Monday night at Scotiabank Place.
Senior Vice President of Player Safety Brendan Shanahan issued a warning that similar behavior will not be tolerated from Michalek in a phone call to Ottawa GM Bryan Murray on Tuesday afternoon.
Not sure why the phone call wasn’t placed to Michalek directly, but whatever.
The Edmonton Oilers have assigned center Leon Draisaitl to AHL Bakersfield.
The demotion of Draisaitl, 19, means 21-year-old rookie Anton Slepyshev has made the opening-day roster after scoring twice and adding two assists in exhibition action.
The Oilers experimented during the preseason with Draisaitl, a natural center, on the wing. He didn’t have a particularly poor camp, finishing with one goal and three assists in six games.
But Slepyshev apparently impressed more.
“He’s a young player but he’s played pro hockey before,” coach Todd McLellan told the Edmonton Journal. “You can see it.”
Slepyshev played 58 games in the KHL last season, scoring 15 goals for Salavat Yulaev Ufa.
A preseason push by a number of Vancouver Canucks youngsters has left forward Linden Vey and defenseman Frank Corrado on waivers today.
The more surprising name of the two is Corrado, the 22-year-old who entered the season with an excellent chance of making the opening-day roster. However, it seems that rookie d-man Ben Hutton, 22, has been given the nod after finishing an eye-opening preseason with one goal and four assists in seven games. (This despite Hutton being waiver exempt. So it’s a risk for the Canucks, to be sure.)
It was the play of 19-year-old rookie Jared McCann that led, in part, to the waiving of Vey. (For more on that, click here.) Veteran Adam Cracknell remains with the team as well, to some surprise.
Rookie winger Jake Virtanen is also expected to be on Vancouver’s opening-day roster, though that’s no big shock.
Defenseman Alex Biega is also on waivers, as expected.