Ryane Clowe has been suspended by the NHL for two games for leaving the bench to engage in an altercation with Andrew Shaw in the waning moments of Friday night's game between the San Jose Sharks and Chicago Blackhawks.
Clowe, who had been suspended indefinitely pending this hearing with the NHL, pled his case to Brendan Shanahan, the NHL's senior vice president of player safety, via teleconference earlier Monday after waiving his right to an in-person hearing.
Clowe already sat out one game as part of the indefinite suspension, so he'll miss just one more -- meaning he will be eligible to return for Thursday's game against the Detroit Red Wings.
The altercation occurred with 8.4 seconds remaining in Friday's game after Shaw boarded Joe Pavelski in front of the Sharks bench. Clowe then left the bench and immediately went to engage Shaw. What was unclear in the immediate aftermath was if it was a legal line change or not that brought Clowe onto the ice.
According to Shanahan, who went into great detail on his description of the incident, Clowe left the bench on a legal line change, but violated Rule 70.1 by making the legal line change with the sole intention of engaging Shaw.
Considering leaving the bench can potentially come with an automatic 10-game suspension, it would appear Clowe is getting off easy. However, since his leaving the bench was deemed a legal line change, the most severe penalty came off the table. Additionally, Shanahan idenitified the fact that Clowe threw no punches during the altercation and was assessed a minor for roughing and game misconduct on the play.
This is Clowe's first NHL suspension, though he has been fined twice previously.
Are you satisfied with Shanahan's explanation?