According to Isabelle Khurshudyan of the Washington Post, Matt Niskanen will not receive a disciplinary hearing with the Department of Player Safety for his cross-check last night on Sidney Crosby. Niskanen was assessed a five minute major and game misconduct, while Crosby did not return to the game.
In the play, Crosby is knocked off stride as he cuts in front of the Washington net, and ends up being hit in the face by Niskanen’s stick. While it did end up in an injury, Niskanen said after the game that he had no intent there, and that he wasn’t even trying to cross check him. His hands aren’t separated on his stick like a normal check, and he told reporters that he hopes Crosby is okay.
Niskanen could still be fined for the incident, but it looks more like the league has deemed his penalty served as the Capitals played with just five defenders for most of the game and the short overtime period. The Penguins on the other hand have provided no update on Crosby’s status, and should he remain out will be leaning on Evgeni Malkin to help them through the series. After falling down 2-0, Malkin and the Penguins rallied late to score two goals with an empty net and send the game to overtime. A Trevor Daley penalty would eventually allow the Capitals to win on a powerplay goal from Kevin Shattenkirk, one of the most maligned players of the series so far.