After a hearing earlier Tuesday, the decision has come down from the NHL Department of Player Safety, and Alex Chiasson has received a one-game suspension. The Edmonton Oilers forward exchanged words with Toronto Maple Leafs counterpart Jimmy Vesey after the final whistle on Monday night but took the skirmish too far with a cross-check to the head area. Chiasson technically received a major penalty and misconduct, but served neither with the game over. The league justly ruled that he deserved additional discipline:
Chiasson raises his stick, pulls it back, and delivers a sharp check to the neck of Vesey. This is a cross-check… What elevates this play to supplemental discipline is the fact that it is done after the game is over and for no legitimate hockey reason. This is not a hockey play. This is a forceful, high cross-check delivered to an opponent after the game has ended.
Player Safety does note that Chiasson has no previous history of league discipline, having never received a fine or suspension in his nine-year, 536-game career. This was likely a significant factor in Chiasson’s blatant post-game penalty not rising to the level of a multi-game suspension.
The Oilers will now be without Chiasson for Wednesday night’s rematch with the Leafs, the third straight game between the two teams. After losing the first two of this in-season series, shut out in both, Edmonton will have to try to right the ship without the help of Chiasson. Fortunately, Chiasson hasn’t been a key factor in the Oilers’ success this season anyhow; the 30-year-old has just seven points and has struggled to get shots on goal and create offense. Chiasson cleared waivers earlier this season, implying Edmonton was okay with losing him for nothing, a scenarios it now faces on Wednesday.