The day after sending Dan Boyle to hospital with a controversial hit from behind, Maxim Lapierre is offering up his apologies.
“First of all, I would like to apologize to Dan,” Lapierre told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “You never want to see someone feel that way and, as tough as it is to look at for the fans and his teammates, I feel the same way.
Lapierre, who was tossed from Tuesday night’s game and now faces an in-person disciplinary hearing with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety, said it wasn’t his intention to hurt Boyle, adding he was just trying to finish his hit.
That said, Lapierre recognized and acknowledged his responsibility in a collision that led to Boyle being knocked unconscious and stretchered off the ice.
“I was just trying to finish my hit. But like I said, it’s no excuse,” Lapierre explained. “It’s terrible. It’s not fun to look at somebody on the ice and the only thing I want to focus on right now is that hopefully he gets better.
“I feel terrible for him and his family.”
Lapierre, known around the league as “Yappy Lappy,” also addressed his reputation as a dirty player that likes to chirp opponents. He was hopeful that reputation wouldn’t prevent Boyle from eventually speaking with him about the incident (Lapierre has already tried to contact Boyle, but Boyle didn’t answer).
“Obviously, it’s a tough day for him and his family and it’s tough for him to answer a guy who just hit him,” Lapierre said. “But I’m going to try to call him back later in the year when it’s a better point.”
Coaches are quickly getting the hang of this challenge thing.
Following Mike Babcock’s successful challenge in Toronto’s opening-night loss to Montreal on Wednesday, Babcock’s provincial rival — Sens head coach Dave Cameron — got it right as well, successfully reversing Evander Kane‘s would-be equalizer in the third period.
From the league:
At 10:34 of the third period in the Senators/Sabres game, Ottawa requested a Coach’s Challenge to review whether Buffalo was off-side prior to Evander Kane’s goal.
After reviewing all available replays and consulting with NHL Hockey Operations staff, the Linesman determined that Buffalo’s Zemgus Girgensons was off-side prior to the goal. According to Rule 78.7, “The standard for overturning the call in the event of a ‘GOAL’ call on the ice is that the Linesman, after reviewing any and all available replays and consulting with the Toronto Video Room, determines that one or more Players on the attacking team preceded the puck into the attacking zone prior to the goal being scored and that, as a result, the play should have been stopped for an “Off-side” infraction; where this standard is met, the goal will be disallowed.”
Therefore the original call is overturned – no goal Buffalo Sabres.
The clock is re-set to show 9:32 (10:28 elapsed time), when the off-side infraction occurred.
As the league later noted, this was the first coach’s challenge under the offside scenario.
Didn’t take long for Jack Eichel to make his mark at the NHL level.
The No. 2 overall pick at this year’s draft scored his first-ever NHL goal in his first-ever NHL game on Thursday night, cutting Ottawa’s lead to 2-1 in the third period of Buffalo’s season-opener.
Marcus Foligno and another new Sabre, Evander Kane, registered the assists on Eichel’s marker, which came on the power play.