Sidney Crosby gave the Pittsburgh Penguins the lead late in the third period and Brandon Sutter secured the win over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday.
Crosby scored his 19th goal of the season with 6:03 left in regulation time to give Pittsburgh a 2-1 lead over the visiting Maple Leafs, before Sutter’s short-handed empty-net goal gave the Penguins a 3-1 victory, finishing off what was an eventful evening between the two teams.
Robert Bortuzzo got everybody talking with a high hit on Leafs forward Jerry D’Amigo in the third period.
D’Amigo was leaning forward to chip a puck up the wall with one hand on his stick, when he was planted to the ice by Bortuzzo, who stood up in the neutral zone, delivering a blow to the head in the process.
Bortuzzo was given a minor penalty for an illegal check to the head as a result.
As per the NHL Department of Player Safety, the league will not be pursuing supplemental discipline on Bortuzzo.
“In looking at Bortuzzo/D’Amigo, we see unavoidable head contact on an otherwise full body hit,” stated the Department of Player Safety on Twitter.
Earlier in the night, the Penguins’ defenseman was on the receiving end of a hit from Leafs’ forward Troy Bodie in the corner.
Bortuzzo got up, grabbed Bodie and the two engaged in a fight in the Pittsburgh zone.
Penguins’ forward Jayson Megna also suffered a lower-body injury Monday and is “unlikely” to play Wednesday against the New York Rangers, as per the Penguins’ Twitter account.
Looks as though slumping Dallas winger Valeri Nichushkin could be a healthy scratch tonight when the Stars host the Oilers at American Airlines.
Per the Morning-News, Nichushkin — who barely played in the second and third periods of Saturday’s 6-3 loss to Colorado — is likely to be replaced by Colton Sceviour in the lineup.
Stars head coach Lindy Ruff was fuming after the Avs defeat, calling it “embarrassing, worse than disappointing.” It didn’t take a genius to realize one of the players in his doghouse was Nichushkin, who had just 2:02 of ice time in the second period and 3:24 in the third.
Yesterday, Ruff dropped Nichushkin to the fourth line in practice.
“I’ve been trying to help him by shifting him around,” the head coach explained. “He had some struggles early in camp on right wing, so I put him on left, and he doesn’t seem real comfortable at left right now.
“His game, everything has got to get a little bit quicker.”
The 10th overall pick in 2013, Nichushkin has struggled to build on the form shown in his rookie campaign, when he scored 14 goals and 34 points in 79 contests.
He missed nearly all of last season with a linger hip ailment and has been a virtual non-factor through the first two games this year.
When the Los Angeles Kings announced they’d settled with Mike Richards, it didn’t take long for the accusations of salary-cap circumvention to materialize.
And though NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly was adamant that the settlement was “far from” circumvention, apparently not everyone agrees with the league in that regard.
“Privately, other teams are screaming bloody murder and are threatening to make an issue about it at December’s Board of Governors’ meeting,” Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports.
Friedman goes into more detail in his story, so click the link to read more.
But remember how we wrote that the issue in this case was precedent, and that the “NHL and NHLPA can’t allow teams to escape onerous contracts through a back door”?
Well, one agent posed a good question to Friedman: “What’s to stop other teams from trying this?”