The NHL’s Department of Player Safety dropped the hammer on Ottawa Senators forward Alex Burrows on Wednesday by announcing that he has been suspended for 10 games for his attack on New Jersey Devils forward Taylor Hall.
Burrows was offered an in-person hearing for his actions (he waived that right) which meant the NHL was eyeing a suspension of at least six games.
It is pretty clear based on the severity of the suspension that he crossed the line in a pretty unacceptable manner.
Here is the NHL’s explanation of the incident and the punishment.
The NHL points out that Burrows was the aggressor in this altercation at all times and that he was clearly looking for retribution following what was a clean and legal check by Hall earlier in the shift.
The league also points out that Burrows argued his knees to the back of Hall’s head were the result of him trying to free himself from a compromising position. The league did not agree with his interpretation, while also calling Burrows’ actions “a dangerous and unjustifiable attack.”
[Related: Alex Burrows Loses His Mind, Repeatedly Knees Taylor Hall In The Head]
Prior to this incident Burrows had been suspended once and fined five other times in his career.
This is tied for the longest suspension handed out by the NHL this season. Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Radko Gudas was suspended 10 games earlier this season for slashing Winnipeg Jets forward Mathieu Perreault, while Detroit Red Wings defenseman Luke Witkowski was also suspended 10 games for returning to the ice to take part in an altercation (that 10-game suspension was automatic according to league rules).
Burrows will be eligible to return to the Senators’ lineup on March 2 when the Senators visit the Vegas Golden Knights.
Adam Gretz is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @AGretz.