Washington Capitals forward Evgeny Kuznetsov is facing a likely suspension for high sticking Vancouver Canucks defenseman Kyle Burroughs.
Kuznetsov should’ve been ejected for the flagrant high stick. Instead, he remained in the game, assisting on the Caps’ final three goals — including the game-winner.
The Caps forward was given just a minor penalty on the play. From Rule 60:
Any contact made by a stick on an opponent above the shoulders is prohibited and a minor penalty shall be imposed.
When a player carries or holds any part of his stick above the shoulders and makes contact with his opponent’s neck, face or head so that injury results, in the manner of drawing blood or otherwise, the Referee shall assess a double-minor penalty.
When, in the opinion of the Referee, a player attempts to or deliberately injures an opponent while carrying or holding any part of his stick above the shoulders of the opponent, the Referee shall assess a match penalty to the offending player.
The officials can only review a penalty if a major, match, or high-sticking double-minor is called on the ice. Minor penalties cannot be reviewed.
Player Safety, though, will undoubtedly be reviewing this to levy some supplemental discipline.
The Capitals went on to win the game 6-4. Referees were Corey Syvret (#23) and Marc Joannette (#25); linesmen were Derek Nansen (#70) and Ryan Galloway (#82).
This would be the second disciplinary action against Kuznetsov for high sticking in the past six months. He was fined $5,000 for high sticking Florida’s Noel Acciari during the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs.