This one is going to carry a lot of emotions on both sides.
Blues forward Oskar Sundqvist delivered a high hit against the boards to Bruins defenseman Matt Grzelcyk on Wednesday in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final.
Grzelcyk stayed down on the ice and eventually had to be helped to the locker room after the hit. He was not on the ice for the second period.
Sundqvist was given a two-minute penalty for boarding.
Here’s where the emotions come in, though. Grzelcyk clearly took a shot to the head and, when the play is watched in real time, it looked like Sundqvist indeed went up high on the Bruins defenseman.
But, if you slow the play down, Grzelcyk was a bit off balance, which put his head in an awkward spot for Sundqvist to hit.
Now, there is zero disputing that Sundqvist hit Grzelcyk in the head. This absolutely happened. But it doesn’t appear he had an intent to hurt the Boston defenseman.
This matters because the hit could result in a suspension, but NHL Player Safety will have to break down this play and see if it merits one.
The call on the ice does not matter here. It’s what Player Safety decides. Had it been a five-minute major, that’s another story, but it’s not. It was just a penalty for boarding. So, we’ll see if the penalty worsens in the coming days.
But again, on second and third glances, it’s hard to say Sundqvist was trying to hurt Grzelcyk for what it’s worth.