Winnipeg Jets left-winger Evander Kane was suspended two games by the NHL on December 8th for boarding Anaheim Ducks’, Clayton Stoner, on Sunday, December 7th. Stoner was not injured by the hit and went on to play for the remainder of the game.The Jets went on to lose to the Ducks 4-3 in overtime after tying it late in the third.
Kane boarded the Anaheim defenseman with less than a minute left to play in the second period. Stoner recovered quickly from the hit and immediately dropped his gloves against the 23-year old Kane. Stoner was sent to the penalty box to serve a 2-minute minor for roughing, while Kane was charged with a major penalty and a game misconduct. Kane’s two game suspension will cost him $56,451.62 in salary money. The forfeited wages will go toward the players’ emergency assistance fund.
NHL Director of Player Safety, Patrick Burke, announced the suspension on December 8th. It was the first suspension of Kane’s NHL career. In the video released by the NHL, Burke stated, “the onus is entirely upon Kane to avoid this check completely or, at the very least, minimize the contact.” He concludes in the video that “Kane does neither.”
The Winnipeg Free Press reported that Jets’ head coach, Paul Maurice did not expect the NHL Department of Player Safety to suspend Kane at all for the hit from behind on Stoner. Instead, he thought a 5-minute penalty would have sufficed for Kane’s offense since it was a “hit on the numbers.”
Winnipeg will face the Dallas Stars in the Big D on Tuesday, December 9th without Kane. He will also miss the Jets’ game against Colorado on Thursday. The Ducks return to Winnipeg for a rematch on Saturday; Kane will be eligible to play in that matchup.