Tampa Bay, FL
Toronto Maple Leafs winger Joffrey Lupul is questioning NHL's standards in suspending him two games for his hit on Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman.
Controversy arose after the NHL's department of player safety didn't deem a questionable hit by New York Rangers forward Rick Nash against the Florida Panthers' Tomas Kopecky worthy of any discplinary action.
"If someone can explain the decisions on what warrants a suspension and what doesn't, please let me and the rest of guys know," Lupul tweeted.
"It makes no sense," said a high-level member of the Leafs front office. "No suspension for Nash. No hearing. Nothing."
Lupul, 29, sat out Toronto's 5-4 shootout loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Thursday as a result of the suspension, and will also miss the Leafs' tilt against the Boston Bruins on Saturday on Hockey Night in Canada.
"As the video shows, after Hedman passes the puck, Lupul approaches from the side and recklessly targets Hedman's head by elevating and making it the principal point of contact," the NHL Department of Player Safety's Rob Blake said in an explanatory video.
"I've got to see the replay, but by no means did I go after him and try and hit him in the head," Lupul said.
In Nash's case, replays clearly show Nash's feet left the ice -- also a big part of the issue in Lupul's case -- when he hit Kopecky from behind, but the contact point was unclear. No penalty was called.
"We don't see this as being principal point of contact to the head. For a fact, we don't see much contact to the head at all," said NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan. "We don't suspend for leaving your feet. We suspend for leaving your feet and hitting a guy in the head violently."
Shanahan noted that it was a "whiplash effect" that caused Kopecky's head to snap and helmet to fall.
The suspension, the first of Lupul's nine-year career, will cost him $45,945.94 in lost pay.
By the time of the hit, Lupul already had a goal and an assist on the way to a 4-2 win that ended the Maple Leafs' five-game losing streak. But he won't be eligible to return to the lineup until Monday.
Lupul has been an offensive force since returning from a broken forearm, recording three goals and an assist in two games.
- Kings Late Back-to-Back Goals Stun Sharks
- Capitals Coach Adam Oates Says He Could 'Beat Up' Rangers John Tortorella
- Brad Marchand OT Goal Powers Bruins Past Rangers in Game 1
- Yankee Stadium to Host Two NHL games in 2014
- Capitals Alex Ovechkin Credits Lundqvist for Rangers Playoff Win
- Marcus Oduya and Marcus Kruger Push Blackhawks Past Red Wings
- Quick Work in Cage Pushes Kings Past Sharks
- Two Power-play Goals Lift Penguins Past Senators
- Bruins Recover from 4-1 Deficit, Take Game 7 in OT
- Henrik Lundqvist Tallies Shutout as Rangers Force Game 7
- Brooks Orpik's First Goal Lifts Penguins Past Islanders, into second round
- James Reimer's Heroics Push Leafs to Game 6 Win Over Bruins
- Dustin Penner Delivers Game-winner as Kings Oust Blues
- Islanders Center John Tavares picked as Hart Trophy finalist
- Craig Anderson Stops 33 Shots as Senators Advance to 2nd Round
- Sharks Sweep Canucks with Marleau's Overtime Goal
- Kyle Turris OT goal Powers Senators to 3-1 lead over Canadiens
- Three First-Time Finalists Fight it Out for Norris Trophy
- Tuukka Rask Stops 45 Shots as Bruins take 2-1 Series lead over Leafs
- Jean-Gabriel Pageau Hat Trick Powers Senators past Canadiens
- Chris Kunitz Nets Power-Play Goal in OT, Lifts Penguins past Islanders
- Joffrey Lupul Scores Two Goals as Maple Leafs Edge Bruins
- Islanders Make Adjustments to Upset Penguins
- Mike Green Overtime Goal Lifts Caps Over Rangers in Game 2
- Craig Anderson Stops 48 Shots as Senators Top Canadiens
- NHL Pits Blackhawks vs Penguins at Soldier Field in 2014
- Sharks Blast Canucks in Series Opener
- Wade Redden Breaks Playoff Slump, Lifts Bruins to Game 1 Win
- In a 'Flash', Ducks Rip Red Wings in Series Opener
- Avalanche Win 2013 NHL Draft Lottery
- Avalanche Fire Head Coach Joe Sacco After Failed Playoff Bid
- Dallas Stars Dismiss GM Joe Nieuwendyk after Missing Playoffs
- Howard Signs 6-year Extension with Red Wings
- NHL Plans Six Outdoor Games in 2014
- Yale Wins First NCAA National Hockey Title
- Stars Trade Captain Brenden Morrow to Penguins
- Struggling Lightning Fire Coach Guy Boucher
- Leafs' Joffrey Lupul Questions NHL Disciplinary Standards
- NHL Approves Realignment Plan for Next Season
- Cost of pricey Leafs tickets to increase by 2.5 percent next season
- Marc Staal's Eye Injury Induces More NHL Visor Debate
- Blackhawks Patrick Kane enjoys LeBron-like attention
- Panthers center Stephen Weiss out for season due to wrist injury
- Goalie Rick DiPietro blames Islanders for career, life low points
- NHL Realignment Pending Approval from Executives and Players
- Mike Eruzione's 'Miracle On Ice' jersey and stick sold for almost $1 million
- Chicago Blackhawks set NHL mark with win
- Documentary Exposes The NHL's Culture Of Violence
Copyright © 2013 AHN - All Rights Reserved