Milan Lucic fined, not suspended, for roughing Lightning rookie

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Milan Lucic has been fined $10,000 for his actions in the third period of Tuesday’s 5-2 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning.

The Edmonton Oilers forward took offense to a cross-check delivered by Lightning rookie Mathieu Joseph to Lucic’s teammate Kris Russell. Lucic skated after Joseph and delivered a hit in the corner before getting on top of him and restraining him. That set off a big scrum, which resulted in Lucic being given minors for interference and roughing, as well as a game misconduct. All that earned him a Tuesday phone hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety.

The fine is the maximum allowable under the current Collective Bargaining Agreement.

While the Lightning saw the actions worthy of supplemental discipline, Oilers head coach Todd McLellan, shockingly, did not.

“You know, there’s nothing wrong with that,” he said. “We felt that a player took a liberty with Kris Russell. I agree with the liberty part of it and part of the reason we have Lucic here is to take care of teammates and he did that.”

Joseph didn’t think his cross-check on Russell was that bad, but as he skated by the Edmonton bench and saw their reaction, he thought maybe it may have been worse than he thought.

“I didn’t expect something like that to happen after,” Joseph said via the Tampa Bay Times. “It was new for me. I think he was just trying to send a message and protect his teammate. I think maybe it’s not the way to do it.”

The Lightning and Oilers meet for the final time this season on Dec. 22 in Edmonton.

MORE: Your 2018-19 NHL on NBC TV schedule

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Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line atphtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.