4:24PM: Pavel Buchnevich has been suspended for one game for his high-sticking incident with Anthony Mantha.
The NHL said that Buchnevich was assessed a major penalty and game misconduct for “recklessly delivering a forceful, high stick to the face” of Mantha.
In describing the incident, the NHL said:
- Buchnevich delivered a legal body check to Mantha
- Mantha responds by “pushing him lightly and then skates with Buchnevich for a few strides tapping the back of his legs with his stick. Actions for which the on-ice officials signal a penalty to Mantha.”
- As the play was ending “Mantha looks to engage. As they do so Buchnevich raises his hands, releases his stick with one hand and then strikes Mantha recklessly in the face with the stick, with significant force.”
The NHL adds, “while we agree that Buchnevich’s actions are defensive in nature, players are not excused from following league rules because of the actions of their opponent. While Mantha’s actions may have been provocative, Buchnevich is not permitted to respond to that provocation with a reckless and forceful strike to the face of his opponent.”
Adam Rotter: I thought Buchnevich would get both games and his season would be over, but he will only miss tonight and be able to re-join the Rangers for the season finale on Sunday. In isolating just what Buchnevich did, I think it’s a fair suspension. In looking at it in the context of everything else this week, it’s ridiculous that he gets suspended for a game and Tom Wilson got to play last night. I don’t think the Rangers statement influenced this in any way, Buchnevich got a fair suspension for what he did, even as the NHL notes, he was doing it in defense.
10:09AM: The NHL’s Department of Player Safety has announced that Pavel Buchnevich will have a hearing today as a result of his high-sticking penalty against Anthony Mantha last night.
Buchnevich was assessed a five-minute major for cross-checking and a Game Misconduct.
Leading up to the incident, Buchnevich checked Mantha to the boards, a check that Buchnevich got the worst of, and then Mantha swiped at Buchnevich’s head and then slashed him 3-4 times to the back of the leg.
Buchnevich had previously been penalized twice in the first period for slashing and then high-sticking.
On TSN Ottawa Radio, Pierre McGuire mentioned that Mantha was about to do the same thing to Buchnevich, but Buchnevich was quicker.
Adam Rotter: Buchnevich will almost surely be suspended for the final two games of the season in a fitting end for how everything he’s been involved with this week has been dealt with.