The NHL’s Department of Player Safety suspended Rangers forward Pavel Buchnevich one game for high-staying Anthony Mantha, Thursday evening.
The one-game suspension was for high-staying and not cross-checking because of Buchnevich dropping one hand from his stick prior to striking Mantha in the face.
That decision, accidental or not, wound up making a difference especially in reducing the length of the suspension.
“As the video shows, Buchnevich delivers a legal body check to Mantha on the wall,” DoPS clarifies. “Accordingly, Mantha first pushes him daintily then skates with Buchnevich for a couple of steps tapping the rear of his legs with his stick. Activities for which the on-ice authorities signal a minor punishment to Mantha. As the play arrives at the end for the punishment, Mantha hopes to lock in. As they do as such, Buchnevich lifts his hands, delivers his stick with one hand, and afterward strikes Mantha foolishly in the face with the stick with huge power. This is high-staying.
“It is important to note that while we agree that Buchnevich’s actions are defensive in nature, players are not excused from following league rules because of the actions of their opponent. While Mantha’s actions may have been provocative, Buchnevich is not permitted to respond to that provocation with a reckless and forceful strike directly to the face of his opponent.”
Eventually, after two line fights, a searing Rangers’ assertion, and loads of basic statements from the Rangers towards Tom Wilson, just Buchnevich wound up suspended.