Though it had been reported earlier that Nathan MacKinnon would receive no discipline for striking the linesman in yesterday’s game with his stick, the league confirmed it with an explanation today.
The safety of our on-ice officials is, and has always been, of paramount importance to us. In this regard, we have always exercised a zero tolerance policy when it comes to any form of abuse of our officials. Last night, one of our officials was struck by a player with his stick immediately after a face-off. We immediately investigated the incident and, having conferred with the on-ice officiating crew and the NHL Officials’ Association, it has been determined that the player’s intention was not to strike the official but, rather, to initiate contact with the opposing player. Given this conclusion, it has been determined that no further discipline is necassary. This decision should in no way be seen as a diminution of our steadfast conviction to protect our officials.
After losing a faceoff to Tomas Nosek of the Boston Bruins, MacKinnon appeared to slash the linesman while Nosek skated out of his reach. The Colorado Avalanche will avoid losing their top forward to suspension, while the 26-year-old won’t have to give up any of his salary or miss any games.
This event conjured memories of Antoine Vermette’s ten-game suspension in 2017, when he also slashed the linesman moments after a lost faceoff. In that case, Vermette himself confirmed that he deserved a suspension for his actions, admitting that while he was only “trying to get his attention” he did purposely make contact with the official. That is not the case here, where all involved appear to believe that MacKinnon was trying to hit Nosek, not the official.
“That is not the case here, where all involved appear to believe that MacKinnon was trying to hit Nosek, not the official.” – Judging by the number of “Flame On” postings from B’s fans on the original Twitter page (with no required “Flame off” tags), it appears they would disagree. Nosek pulled a rodeo hockey move to “win” the faceoff, which clearly pissed off #29, so he tried to get both Nosek with the stick and the official with a rant. Unusual fail for him on both counts.
The officials still have to be protected. Regardless if he meant to hit the official or not. If I take a gun and shoot someone while not meaning to hit that person I still have to pay the price. Bad ruling
Oops I tripped a guy, I didn’t intend to though. There is no need for a penalty.
Might as well let the players use the honor system
Good thing there are different rules for star players, wait . . . What?
The Department or Player Safety is the joke that keeps on giving.
Department OF Player Safety
Department of Referee Safety must’ve overruled them…
Suspending him for a slash to the legs would be ridiculous if it was on a player. But accidentally slashing a ref on the legs warrants one? Ya I don’t think so.
I have no or with no discipline to him on this play – it’s the league not caring about the refs, or the refs saying he’s ok with it.
But how did Mackinon not get suspended last week for his dirty hit in the Vgs game on Patrick.
He was mad and hit Patrick at the Col blue line with a blindsided dirty shot to the head.
Patrick last touched the puck at the Vgs blue line, so that’s a tad bit late by any accounts.
Not even a fine! So now it won’t even show on his record.
That hit was 100x worse then when Hall hit Mackinnon a month ago and Bednar said it was a brutal hit.
Why is the league ok with a “star” player injuring another player with no discipline?
Yeah right. They’re going to suspend one of the few stars they have? If it had been some 20th man Bozo he’d be gone for the year.
I thought you were responsible for you stick at all times?
How many games would Marchand have gotten?
Depends on if he licked the officials face after purposely whacking him.
It’s interesting. People are very worked up about this. While I agree that a player is responsible for his stick at all times, and some sort of discipline could easily be passed down to mackinnon; he clearly didn’t attack the official. Lots of people are calling for 10 games, 20 games, or even a full season. The face-off headlock should have been penalized, and the player was lashing out to stick up for himself. Even if he slashed nosek like he was trying to, it would have been a 2 minute minor and life moves on. However, I don’t understand the outrage. Tons of blatant penalties go uncalled each and every game in the NHL and nobody bats an eye. Just because of mackinnons superstar status, now you want to say the entire league is broken? Get a clue fellas.