Detroit Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin is in trouble with the NHL for punching a foe in the season opener Thursday.
The league’s Department of Player Safety tweeted Friday morning “Larkin will have a hearing today for Roughing Tampa Bay’s Mathieu Joseph.”
Larkin was ejected at 11:40 in the second period of the 7-6 overtime loss at Little Caesars Arena. It started when Joseph drove Larkin headfirst into the boards. Larkin took offense; he suffered an injury April 20 that landed him in the hospital when Dallas’ Jamie Benn shoved his stick into Larkin’s neck.
Larkin got up from the hit and threw a punch at Joseph.
“Dylan is coming off what he’s coming off with the injury, and he gets hit from behind into the boards so he’s going to be upset,” coach Jeff Blashill said after the game. “At best, I thought they were probably both two-minute penalties. But that’s the way they called it.”
Larkin was assessed a match penalty, triggering an automatic review by the NHL. He faces possible suspension.
Joseph went to the Lightning dressing room, but returned to finish the second period. He did not play in the third period. Blashill said the fact Larkin had his glove on should be a factor.
“A punch with a glove on? Maybe I’m old-school,” he said. “I don’t think I am. There’s lots of punches without gloves on. I think it’s way different if a guy hits a guy with his glove off than with his glove on.”
A scrum broke out after the incident, and Joseph and teammate Jan Rutta were each assessed roughing penalties on Larkin.
The Wings host the Vancouver Canucks on Saturday (7 p.m., BSD). An announcement on Larkin is expected today. The hearing will consist of Larkin, general manager Steve Yzernan, members of the NHLPA, Larkin’s agent, and senior members of the Department of Player Safety. A hearing is held so that the offending player is given the opportunity to explain his actions. The fact the hearing is remote, and not in person, means a suspension would be five games or less, or a fine of no more than $5,000.
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