[UPDATE: Reaves has been suspended two games.]
Golden Knights forward Ryan Reaves will have a disciplinary hearing on Monday afternoon for his actions late in the third period of their 7-1 loss to the Avalanche on Sunday.
Reaves was assessed a match penalty and ejected from the team’s Game 1 loss for an incident that occurred in front of the Avalanche net, resulting in Reaves cross-checking Philipp Grubauer, punching Ryan Graves, tackling him to the ice, and then kneeling on his head.
The NHL Department of Player Safety did not say that Reaves was offered an in-person hearing, meaning any suspension will be five games or less.
The Avalanche were not happy with the play after the game.
“I don’t know if you can call that physicality,” said captain Gabriel Landeskog afterward. “Reaves, he’s on a mission to hurt someone in the third. That’s what he goes out and does. I’m sure the league will take a look at it. It was intent to injure.”
Avs head coach Jared Bednar said he expected a physical game and series, and that the Reaves incident was the only play out of the game that he did not like.
“The only play that I really didn’t like that was out of the context of the game was the Reaves play on Graves when he was down,” said Bednar. “Besides that, I think there was some big hits thrown, some clean hits, some of them were a little high and a little late. Besides that, I didn’t see anything that was too crazy for playoff time, except I didn’t like that play with Reaves at the end.”
Predictably, Golden Knights head coach Peter DeBoer did not see it that way and went to bat for his player.
“For me, Ryan Reaves is one of the cleanest tough guys I’ve seen in the league in my 12, 13 years,” he said. “He’s consistently a clean, physical player.”
AVALANCHE VS. GOLDEN KNIGHTS (COL leads 1-0) – series livestream link
Game 1: Avalanche 7, Golden Knights 1
Game 2: Wed. June 2: Golden Knights at Avalanche, 10 p.m. ET (NBCSN)
Game 3: Fri. June 4: Avalanche at Golden Knights, 10 p.m. ET (NBCSN)
Game 4: Sun. June 6: Avalanche at Golden Knights, 8:30 p.m. ET (NBCSN)
*Game 5: Tues. June 8: Golden Knights at Avalanche TBD
*Game 6: Thurs. June 10: Avalanche at Golden Knights TBD
*Game 7: Sat. June 12: Golden Knights at Avalanche TBD