With the Bruins set to take on the Flyers this afternoon, the NHL had to rule on whether or not Andrew Ference would be eligible to play or not. Bruins coach Claude Julien confirmed before today’s game that Ference has been suspended by the league.
“You respect what [the NHL] is trying to go and you move on,” said Julien.
The length of Ference’s suspension is unknown, however, and the Bruins are awaiting word on just how many more games he’ll miss thanks to his reckless hit on Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh during the Bruins’ 3-2 overtime loss yesterday.
French-Canadian sports network RDS reports that Ference will sit for three games, but Brendan Shanahan’s decision is the only one that matters. We’ll update you on that once Shanahan’s decision and video when that comes down.
Rene Bourque has already been suspended twice this season, which one must assume had something to do with his relocation from Calgary to Montreal. He just finished his five-game suspension but this head shot on Carl Hagelin might earn him yet another involuntary (and unpaid) vacation following his first game as a member of the Canadiens:
Ian Cole wasn’t as fortunate as other players who escaped Brendan Shanahan’s gaze recently.
Cole received a three game suspension for his elbow to the head of Detroit forward Justin Abdelkader. The hit came halfway through the first period of their game on Saturday night that saw Detroit win 3-0. Cole received two minutes for an illegal check to the head for the hit, Abdelkader was shaken up for a bit and saw treatment, but returned to the game and scored a goal in the second period.
Cole will fork over $21,081.09 worth of salary to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund and wind up on the list of repeat offenders should he ever run afoul of the law again. Take a look at the hit here.
You have to wonder what Cole was thinking here by sticking his elbow out to clip Abdelkader, maybe he had a long standing hate of Michigan State after his years at Notre Dame.
When will he learn? Sutton receives eight-game suspension
For those wondering how Brendan Shanahan would handle repeat offenders under his watch, wonder no more: Edmonton Oilers’ defenseman Andy Sutton was suspended today for eight games for his charging Alexei Ponikarovsky on Wednesday night.
We learned yesterday that Sutton had waived his right to an in-person hearing signaling that the suspension could be lengthy. Within the official NHL explanation, Shanahan explains that the suspension length is due in large part to Sutton’s prior supplemental discipline history (in addition to Sutton charging on the play). He also clarified that they also took into account that Ponikarovsky was NOT injured on the play.
Can you imagine what the suspension would have been if Ponikarovsky was injured on the play?
Check out the league’s explanation and let us know what you think. Did the league do enough to a guy who has repeatedly crossed the line? Or is eight games enough for a play that didn’t cause severe injury to an opponent?
Shanahan explains in the league issued video that Leino was in the process of stealing the puck from Read with his feet as his elbow came up and hit him in the shoulder and head. The league viewed the contact as an accidental elbow, they also viewed it as a “reckless” hit “without intent” to injure from Leino. Additionally, Shanahan took into account that Read was not injured on the play and Leino has no history of dirty play in the NHL.
Leino should consider himself a lucky man, because the play looked like it would warrant more than just a single game suspension.
Maybe Leino can take the one game mandatory vacation to find his game that he left in Philadelphia last season. Despite making $6 million this season, he’s only managed three goals in 27 games over the first two months of the season.
Three goals, one suspension, and a lot of criticism over the first two months of his 6-year stint in Buffalo. It could have started a little better.