NHL.com announced this morning that Colorado Avalanche left wing Cody McLeod is set to have an in-person interview with the National Hockey League Department of Player Safety regarding a boarding incident with Detroit Red Wings defenseman Niklas Kronwall.
Just days after San Jose Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle had to be ushered off of the ice on a stretcher after being boarded by St. Louis Blues center Maxim Lapierre; history would repeat itself at the Pepsi Center in Denver.
At just 2:13 in the first period, McLeod was assessed a 5 minute major for Boarding Kronwall, and a 10 minute Misconduct penalty.
As you can see from the video, Kronwall clearly had his back turned and his head down when the hit came from behind. Just like the situation involving Boyle, Kronwall remained on the ice for several minutes, eventually having to be removed from the ice by stretcher.
As per Rule 18.9 in the NHL’s collective bargaining agreement: If the preliminary review that a suspension of six (6) or more games may be appropriate and/or further investigation is required, an in-person hearing will be conducted.
The Detroit Red Wings later announced that Kronwall had sustained a concussion as well as cuts to his ear.
Kronwall has a concussion; cuts to the ear but he’s moving all extremities, being treating in locker room. #WinForNik
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) October 18, 2013
According to the NHL Department of Players Safety, the following grounds are being considered for supplemental discipline: boarding. However, the Department of Player Safety retains the right to make adjustments to the infraction upon review.
Detroit would eventually win this one 4-2.
If you ask my opinion, this is a trend that needs to be put to an end right now. Whether intentional or otherwise, it’s this kind of play that ends careers and affects Player Safety long-term. It seems to me that we have had more incidents in the opening weeks of this season than we did the entire season last year.
This simply cannot continue down this path.