Malkin avoids hearing after head hit
WASHINGTON Evgeni Malkin will not have a disciplinary hearing for his shoulder to the head of T.J. Oshie during the Pittsburgh Penguins’ 2-1 loss at the Washington Capitals.
Two people with direct knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press that Malkin would not face a hearing with the NHL department of player safety and therefore won’t be suspended. The people spoke on condition of anonymity Thursday because the league does not announce the lack of a hearing.
With Pittsburgh on the power play early in the third period, Malkin passed the puck and lifted his right shoulder into Oshie’s head and kept skating. The officials conferred before deciding to give Malkin a five-minute major penalty for an illegal check to the head and eject him from Wednesday night’s game.
Oshie, who returned and scored the game-winner with 1:14 left, was not mad at Malkin for what he perceived to be an accident. “He maybe thought I was coming to hit him and so he threw the reverse shoulder out there, which I try to do that all the time,” Oshie said. “I just wasn’t expecting it being on the PK.”
League officials agreed with Oshie’s assumption that Malkin was bracing for contact, not trying to deliver a vicious headshot.