Alain Vigneault rips NHL for not suspending Wayne Simmonds

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Alain Vigneault rips NHL for not suspending Wayne Simmonds
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The New York Rangers will be without captain Ryan McDonagh at least through Monday’s game against the New Jersey Devils, the team announced. The defenseman suffered a concussion after he mixed it up with Wayne Simmonds of the Philadelphia Flyers on Saturday and took a punch to the face.

McDonagh left the game and didn’t return after being assessed a pair of double minors. Simmonds, meanwhile, was ejected and given a game misconduct and match penalty. He’s feeling fine after taking the Rangers’ defenseman’s stick to the head prior to the punch. 

Despite the penalty handed Simmonds, Dave Isaac of the Courier Post reported on Sunday that the NHL decided against both rescinding the game misconduct and suspending the Flyers forward. That didn’t sit too well with Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault after Monday’s morning skate.

Via Andrew Gross of the Bergen Record:

“What I didn’t expect was the reaction from the league. An All-Star player gets sucker-punched, goes down. I wonder if that’s (Sidney) Crosby, what happens? What are the consequences? And, on top of that, a player breaks his stick, throws it at the referees. In the rulebook, that’s automatic. It’s three games. Nothing happens. It’s not even on the sheet after the game.“

And the referee came to me and I said, ‘Am I getting a power play here?’ and he said, ‘No, he’s getting a game misconduct for throwing his stick at us,’” Vigneault continued. “And it’s not on the sheet. I think maybe you guys (the media) should call the league and find out what happened because obviously we’re getting different answers.”

There’s currently no timetable for McDonagh’s return as the Rangers begin a busy week with four games in the next seven days.

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Sean Leahy is the associate editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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