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No suspension for Milan Michalek after allegedly kicking Dan Girard in Game 6

By Brian Stubits | CBSSports.com

The Ottawa Senators have themselves a date with the Rangers on Thursday in New York for Game 7. Fortunately for them, they won't be losing one of their top scorers.

Milan Michalek faced the possibility of a suspension after an incident in the final minute of Game 6 on Monday night. In the mad scrum that led to the Senators' second and final goal -- as contested as it was -- Michalek kicked Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi from the bottom of the pile. At least that's what Girardi says happened and that he had the cut on his pants to prove it.

According to the Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch, the league is looked into it further.

Sources confirmed to the Sun Tuesday morning Shanahan has acquired the CBC footage of the play. If Girardi's claim is verified, Michalek could face a fine or suspension before Game 7 of the series on Thursday in New York.

But the conclusion was that no hearing will be held, that from Renaud P. Lavoie of RDS.

Perhaps one problem was the lack of evidence. This is pretty much the best video anybody can find. Check out the bottom of the screen starting around the 13 second mark and keep your eye on Girardi, No. 5 for the Rangers. His reaction is pretty instant that something happened, but it's hard to see what (h/t to Puck Daddy for the video).

Would Brendan Shanahan really have suspended Michalek for this, especially in a Game 7 if there was proof?

Well there are some precedents here. First, under Shanahan's watch, Jeff Skinner received a two-game suspension this season for using his skate to kick an opponent off of him. That was in plain sight, though, tough to argue against.

Moreover, while not under Shanahan, there is precedent for a player being suspended for a Game 7 because of kicking. Back in 2002 Colin Campbell suspended Shayne Corson of the Maple Leafs for the rubber match for attempting to kick Eric Caims of the Islanders.

I had a feeling that this was going to be the result, it's just too difficult to make a call on if he was actually kicked at the bottom of that pile. If they couldn't overturn that goal call in Game 6 for lack of indisputable evidence, then they couldn't suspended Michalek here.

For more hockey news, rumors and analysis, follow @EyeOnHockey and @BrianStubitsNHL on Twitter and like us on Facebook.

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