Veteran forward Vinny Prospal did not see the final seven minutes of the game because he was serving a 10-minute misconduct penalty for pointing at the scoreboard (with Columbus leading) late in the third period.
Wait. Back up for a second. That's a 10-minute penalty in the NHL?
The NHL's on-ice officials (or the Red Wings, for that matter) may not have found it funny, but I sure as heck did.
I know, I know. Sportsmanship and all of that. But these guys are all highly-paid professionals, and at that level I've always been of the belief that if you don't want somebody rubbing your nose in the fact they scored on you or beat you then maybe you should, you know, not let them score on you or beat you. But that's just me, and obviously the NHL doesn't share my point of view on the matter.
Blue Jackets coach Todd Richards doesn't seem to either, as he told the media after the game.
"I didn't like it," said Richards. "I addressed the team after and told them that. We're not about that."
But why the penalty? The only thing I can find that makes sense is under rule 75.4 which relates to misconduct penalties for unsportsmanlike conduct:
(iii) Any player who, after warning by the Referee, persists in any course of conduct (including threatening or abusive language or gestures or similar actions) designed to incite an opponent into incurring a penalty.
Does that fit here?
It's a crazy league sometimes.