By: Adam Gretz
PITTSBURGH -- Midway through the third period of their 3-2 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins on Wednesday night Detroit Red Wings forward Danny Cleary was issued a five-minute major for boarding Pittsburgh rookie defenseman Philip Samuelsson. Cleary, who averages between 20 and 40 penalty minutes per season throughout his career, and has been called for just two major penalties since joining the Red Wings in 2005, didn't seem happy with the call following the game.
"Listen," said Cleary. "There's going to be a crackdown on everything like that, you know? In my opinion I thought he turned at the last second and it's hard to slow down. What are you going to do?"
Earlier in the day players across the league watched a video sent out by the NHL that showed examples of good hits, as well as hits that will be penalized this season, and Cleary said he felt his hit on Samuelsson, based on the video they watched, was a good hit. When asked if he felt there would be any supplemental discipline from the league he simply said, "I don't know. No. I doubt it."
Red Wings coach Mike Babock, meanwhile, not only didn't think the play was worthy of a five-minute major, but also felt the play should not have been penalized at all.
"I didn't think it was a penalty," said Babcock. "But we're going to see a lot of that this year, don't you think?"