Canucks defenseman Alex Edler has been suspended three games for making an illegal check to the head of San Jose rookie Tomas Hertl last night in Vancouver.
According to NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan, Edler “does not hit Hertl squarely” and made Hertl’s head the “main point of contact.”
While Shanahan concedes that Hertl is leaning forward prior to the hit, “the position of his head does not materially change” before or during the hit.
“If Edler wants to makes this check, he must take a better angle and route toward Hertl and hit him squarely through the body,” ruled Shanahan.
Hertl was not injured on the play, but Edler has been suspended before (for charging Phoenix goalie Mike Smith) and is considered a repeat offender.
Per the CBA, Edler will forfeit $182,926.83 in salary, with the money going to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.