It was only a matter of time before the intensity of the Philadelphia-Pittsburgh series boiled over into suspension-territory The waning moments of Game One last night got ugly as 26 minutes of penalties were handed out, including a fight between Bill Guerin and Braydon Coburn with seven seconds to go in the game.
News broke this morning that Daniel Carcillo was summoned to a hearing for his actions at the end of last night's opening game. Despite not being assessed a penalty, Carcillo was suspended this evening for Game Two and Flyers head coach John Stevens was fined $10,000 as part of the NHL's venture to stop "message sending" in games that it's pretty much decided who will be victorious.
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Carcillo was determined to have butt-ended Penguins forward Max Talbot in the face towards the end of the game. The League reviewed the incident and determined that punishment was necessary.
The NHL's Senior Executive V.P. of Hockey Operations, Colin Campbell, held a conference call with general managers and coaches of teams involved in this year's playoffs to reiterate the League's stance on this, adding, "Organizations, players and coaches will be held accountable for such actions."
Carcillo chimed in after the game contending the butt-end of his stick wasn't what hit Talbot in the face:
"I took the draw, won it back, and I don't know, he dropped his knees," Carcillo said before the ruling. "I didn't hit him with my stick at all. I hit him with my hand. My hand was over my stick. I know I didn't hit him with my stick. One of the video angles is not flattering. All the other angles it looks like I punched him."
Talbot stuck to the company line and didn't provide any bulletin board materials for Philadelphia heading into Game Two on Friday night:
"I don't know what he tried to do," Talbot said. "I don't know. You guys watched the video. The important thing is to get the win and don't worry about what they do. They're trying to send a message. ... We just had to play our game and not worry too much about these guys."
Rookie Luca Sbisa will take Carcillo's place in the lineup.
Here's highlights from Game One. Fast forward to the 10:30 mark to see the incident in question. (Thanks to The 700 Level for the find).