The NHL has handed out two additional diving fines on Friday, these going to Brad Marchand of the Boston Bruins and Arizona Coyotes forward Nick Cousins. The $2000 fines came after warnings to both players earlier this season.
Bruins’ Brad Marchand Fined $2000 for Diving
Marchand was issued a warning following an incident flagged by NHL Hockey Operations during the Bruins’ November 29 game against the Tampa Bay Lightning. Marchand was giving a minor for embellishment on the play, which also resulted in an interference minor to the Bolts’ Mikhail Sergachev
His second violation, which resulted in the $2000 fine, came at 5:38 of the second period against the Pittsburgh Penguins on March 1. Referee Brad Watson handed out matching minors to Pens defenseman Olli Matta for tripping and to Marchand for embellishment.
“[My] pockets are still pretty heavy, though,” Marchand said of the $2,000 fine, which is just a small fraction of his $6.1 million salary. “It is what it is. It’s pretty easy to dictate how things happened from a video hundreds of miles away. It’s up to them, but it is what is.”
Marchand was critical of the process and those in NHL Hockey Ops levying the fines.
“Someone out there [is] saying that I fall a certain way or how they can tell a guy is out of balance on a certain area of the ice, and when sticks are between your feet and you’re being pushed in different angles. They forget how to play the game pretty quickly. They go from being players to management and running the league very quickly and forget what it’s like to play.”
Marchand once had two embellishment strikes against him, but saw those wiped clean after further review. Marchand has never previously been fined for diving/embellishment.
The Bruins winger has been suspended six times in his 9-year NHL career, most recently for five games for elbowing New Jersey Devils forward Marcus Johansson.
Coyotes’ Nick Cousins Fined $2000 for Diving
Arizona Coyotes center Nick Cousins has also been hit with a diving fine. He was issued a warning after a January 4 game against the Nashville Predators. The $2,000 fine came after a second incident on March 1 against the Minnesota Wild. Cousins was penalized for embellishment on the play, with Wild blueliner Nick Seeler also sent to the box for interference.
Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Frederik Andersen was fined for diving in December.
As a reminder, here’s the scale of fines issues to those found guilty of diving/embellishment.
The league reviews all possible embellishment situations and may consider additional dives that were not penalized during the game. They may also rescind dives called in a game that were later reviewed and determined not to be embellishments.
The Diving/Embellishment Review Process
The NHL’s Hockey Operations department tracks every diving or embellishment penalty called on the ice. They also review each game to identify possible dives that were missed by the on-ice officials. (In some cases, they even rescind those diving penalties that may have been called during a game. Boston’s Brad Marchand was the beneficiary of such a modification.)
Once the Hockey Ops team agrees that a dive has taken place, they issue a citation. Sportsnet’s Damien Cox reported that there are nine individuals who participate in the review of each incident. If six decide that a dive has taken place, the player is cited.