Max Pacioretty is going to be receiving a call from the NHL's director of player safety, Brendan Shanahan, today at 4PM for his hit last night on Ryan McDonagh.
It was discussed in the comments section at length last night that while McDonagh clearly turned into the hit, it was still a penalty. When a player gets injured on a play that is illegal, a suspension is always a possibility.
Add in that Pacioretty has a prior record, a 3 game suspension from a hit on Kris Letang last year, and this is probably an easy political call for Shanahan to make after many are accusing him of being soft this season.
Because it's a phone hearing, that means the suspension won't be more than 5 games, but Habs fans should prepare themselves for a suspension. Even with the lax rules this year in comparison to last, it's hard to imagine Shanahan giving a repeat offender fewer games than his first offense.
I have a feeling we'll be missing Pacioretty for 3 games, which is all kind of bull considering McDonagh is just as at fault as Pacioretty for being injured, but let's not fool ourselves on this one. Pacioretty was boarded heavily by McDonagh a few minutes earlier in the game with no call. He took his number and was out for revenge.
Did McDonagh turn his back after seeing Pacioretty? Yes. Was that really dumb? Yes. Could Paciorety have let up and avoided a player being injured? Yes. And that's what's going to be the crux of Shanahan's argument.
We'll have the update out as soon as the news breaks.