We don’t want to say the Anaheim Ducks were targeting Arizona Coyotes star Oliver Ekman-Larsson on Thursday night, but he was basically a slow-moving buffalo in Cabela's Big Game Hunter: NHL Defenseman Edition.
He was hit several times. David Perron gave him a stiff cross-check to the hip that hilariously resulted in off-setting minor penalties. Then, with less than three minutes left in the game, Ryan Garbutt drilled Ekman-Larsson with a clean hit after the defenseman had released the puck.
Anthony Duclair gave Garbutt a tap with his stick. Then rookie teammate Max Domi quickly skated over, cross-checked Garbutt, grabbed him by the hips, spun him around and started wildly throwing punches at him. Domi was given five minutes for fighting, two for instigating and a game misconduct.
The rules say that an instigator penalty in the last five minutes of a game could result in a one-game suspension. Now, we’ve seen these penalties rescinded before for various reasons, but apparently “beating up a guy after a clean hit” doesn’t fall under those parameters. Even if Domi was sticking up for a teammate whose safety, frankly, had been ignored by the officiating crew all night.
Domi was officially suspended by the NHL on Friday for one game. But the good news is that Tie Domi will never have to go on “Maury” for a paternity test: Based on the evidence here, you ARE the father.
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