When Brendan Shanahan took his job as the NHL Senior Vice President of Player Safety, he had no plans of taking it lightly. Since the start of pre-season, four players have already been suspended.
The first two suspensions were for Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond and Jody Shelley. PL3 violated the re-written boarding rule when he hit Matt Clackson from behind. He will be suspended for the remaining pre-season games and 1 regular season game. Shelley also boarded Darryl Boyce and will be banned for the rest of pre-season as well as 5 regular season games.
Since they are both considered repeat offenders, they will have to forfeit part of their salary. PL3 will be forfeiting $6,402.44 while Shelley will be forfeiting $67,073.15 with both salaries going to the Players Emergency Assistance Relief Fund.
The two newest players to be punished are Columbus Blue Jacket James Wisniewski and Minnesota Wild Brad Staubitz.
Wisniewski received a minor penalty for an illegal check to the head of Minnesota forward Cal Clutterbuck. His punishment is pending, and we can assume it will be similar to PL3 and Shelley’s.
Staubitz received a major penalty and game misconduct for checking from behind 4:24 into the third period of Minnesota’s 4-3 overtime victory.
I am glad to see Shanahan making it clear he does not want ANY head shots and he is doing it early on. His message is simple and he is doing everything he can to stop serious injuries from happening.