If you watched Sam Bennett's dangerous open-ice hit on Sharks' Radim Simek in the final minute of Monday's game, you figured the Flames center would be facing a lengthy suspension.
Well, you'd be wrong.
No suspension. No fine. Nothing.
Bennett's hit on Simek came with 25 seconds left in a game the Flames were leading 8-5. Simek had just passed the puck and Bennett went straight at the first-year Sharks player, running him over with a vicious hit.
Simek stayed down on the ice for a while. The Sharks have yet to provide a medical update on Simek.
The Sharks' bench was furious with the hit and made their feelings known to the nearby Flames' bench.
After the game, Sharks coach Peter DeBoer called the hit "predatory."
If you're stunned the NHL has chosen not to discipline Bennett, you're not alone.
A 3-goal game with :22 seconds left and it’s cool (for a player with a reputation) to go head-hunting?
Department of player “safety”? https://t.co/uCnPvmo9YT— Brodie Brazil (@BrodieNBCS) January 1, 2019
So THIS is a 2 game suspension...? pic.twitter.com/imuirgA5Nv— Brodie Brazil (@BrodieNBCS) January 1, 2019
Yet, THIS is not a suspension. pic.twitter.com/dzBuUtEM5Q— Brodie Brazil (@BrodieNBCS) January 1, 2019
And nothing for THIS either?— Brodie Brazil (@BrodieNBCS) January 1, 2019
I rest my case.
It appears the NHL's Department of Player Safety is okay with players hitting a defenseless opponent with 25 seconds remaining in a three-goal game. So much for player safety. Good to know.