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Maple Leafs’ Morgan Rielly suspended 5 games for cross-checking Senators player in face after empty-net goal

Maple Leafs' Morgan Rielly suspended 5 games for cross-checking Senators player in face after empty-net goal




The NHL suspended Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Morgan Rielly for five games after a nasty cross-check on Ottawa Senators forward Ridly Greig following his empty-net goal on Saturday night. With a few seconds left in the game, the Senators smelled victory when Greig had a breakaway toward an empty net with 5.1 seconds remaining in the game. Greig decided to take a slap shot right in front of the net to ice the victory, 5-3, but Rielly took exception.CLICK HERE FOR MORE SPORTS COVERAGE ON FOXNEWS.COMThe veteran defenseman raced up to Greig following the goal and cross-checked him across the face, starting a fight between both teams as the horn sounded. « In short, this is not a hockey play, » NHL Player Safety said in its ruling to suspend Rielly. « This is an intentional, forceful strike to an opponent’s head, using a stick as a weapon to exact retribution on an opponent well after a goal is scored. »NHL PLAYER STRETCHERED OFF THE ICE IN ‘TRAUMATIC’ SCENE DURING FIRST GAME BACK FROM INJURY: ‘TOUGH TO WATCH’The 29-year-old Rielly has never been disciplined over his 11 years in the NFL. However, along with his suspension, he will be forfeiting $195,312.50 based on his average annual salary under the league’s CBA. Rielly has the option to appeal the suspension, though the evidence is very clear about why the league decided to dish out five games. Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe called Rielly’s actions « appropriate, » as the team felt Greig’s slap shot was not warranted at that moment. Captain John Tavares also mentioned the Leafs will « stand our ground when necessary. » »Somebody was going to do it, especially after a play like that, » Auston Matthews added, per ESPN. « I just don’t think it’s really necessary to go down there and ‘hardest shot competition’ into the net. »Greig, a rookie, may not have known about the unwritten rules in the NHL, but his veteran teammate Claude Giroux was aware of why it happened. « The emotions sometimes will get to you, » veteran forward Claude Giroux said. « I obviously don’t like to see him getting in the face there, but there’s not much really to say. Sometimes that kind of stuff happens. »



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Publish date : 2024-02-14 12:48:27

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