The NHL’s Department of Player Safety announced late Monday night that Pittsburgh Penguins superstar Evgeni Malkin will be suspended for the next four games for cross-checking Nashville Predators defenseman Mark Borowiecki in the face.
Earlier in the day, the NHL announced that Malkin would have a hearing, meaning he could be fined or suspended a maximum of four games.
The play occurred during the second period of the Penguins’ 3-2 overtime win. After being restrained by Borowiecki, Malkin slashed him on the hip and then cross-checked him directly in the face. He received a double minor for high-sticking from officials.
“It is important to note that this is not a case where Malkin raises his stick defensively or reflexively to defend himself,” the DoPS video explains. “We find Malkin’s cross-check to be retaliatory and aggressive. While we heard Malkin’s assertion that Borowiecki initiated the scrum by restraining him and confronting him, neither action merited Malkin’s response.
“Players are not excused from following league rules because of the actions of their opponents. There is simply no justification for a player to forcefully and intentionally cross-check another player in this manner.”
This is the second time Malkin has been suspended in his career. He previously was fined for three other infractions.
The Russian forward will forfeit $190k in salary.
The suspension comes during an important time for the Penguins as the team tries to hold off the Capitals for third place in the division. Whoever lands in the second wild-card spot would likely play the Florida Panthers in the first round of the playoffs — the best team in the league.
Here’s the NHL’s press release:
Penguins’ Malkin Suspended Four Games for Cross-Checking
NEW YORK (April 11, 2022) – Pittsburgh Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin has been suspended for four games, without pay, for cross-checking Nashville Predators defenseman Mark Borowiecki during NHL Game No. 1157 in Pittsburgh on Sunday, April 10, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced today.
The incident occurred at 20:00 of the second period. Malkin was assessed a double-minor penalty for high-sticking.
Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement and, based on his average annual salary, Malkin will forfeit $190,000.00. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
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