In the third period against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday night, Detroit Red Wings star Henrik Zetterberg put a glove on the back of defenseman Nikita Nikitin as they raced for the puck. That was enough to knock Nikitin off-balance, as he crashed awkwardly into the end boards and writhed in pain on the ice.
As a result, Zetterberg was given a major penalty for boarding and a game misconduct. According to NHL.com's stats history, it's the first major and ejection for Zetterberg in his 634 career games:
Oh, sweet glorious homer announcing! Can someone put a stopwatch on how quickly one goes from "He did not touch'em … I do not believe he made contact with this player" to "Hardly shoved'em!"?
Did this deserve a game misconduct? Yes, based on this provision of the boarding rule: "The severity of the penalty, based upon the impact with the boards, shall be at the discretion of the Referee." Based on the impact, that's a misconduct.
Does this deserve a suspension? No. As the announcers said, it was hardly a shove; it also wasn't malicious. But hold up on saying "no suspension" because of his clean history in the NHL — ask Pierre-Marc Bouchard how a clean record helped him avoid suspension, because it didn't.
- Sports & Recreation/Ice Hockey
- Sports & Recreation
- Columbus Blue Jackets