The NHL has decided on a ruling for at least one participant in last night’s Detroit Red Wings-Calgary Flames game, and will suspend Luke Witkowski for ten games. The league will also hold a hearing with Matthew Tkachuk tomorrow for his part in the brawl that involved several players on both teams.
Witkowski originally was involved in a fight with Brett Kulak, but came back onto the ice after being sent off by the officials. He was involved in several other skirmishes as the brawl broke loose, which also included a feisty bout between Anthony Mantha and Travis Hamonic. All the players on the ice were near the benches because of a television timeout, with tensions erupting soon after Witkowski threw punches while Kulak was already on the ice.
The game ended 8-2 for the Red Wings, with 141 penalty minutes handed out to the two teams. Witkowski will now miss nearly a month of action. The ten-game suspension is an automatic ban given out after a player comes back onto the ice after being ordered off by the referee, as per rule 70.6.
Any player who has been ordered to the dressing room by the officials and returns to his bench or to the ice surface for any reason before the appropriate time shall be assessed a game misconduct and shall be suspended automatically without pay for the next ten (10) regular League and/or Play-off games.