Montreal’s Nathan Beaulieu received a match penalty in the waning minutes of Saturday’s win over the Boston Bruins.
Beaulieu was assessed the penalty for cross-checking Boston’s Zac Rinaldo in the head as Rinaldo prepared to put a big hit on Beaulieu with just 17 seconds left in the game.
Every match penalty is reviewed by the Department of Player Safety and carries a one-game suspension barring a reversal by the league when it’s reviewed.
It must be assumed that Montreal will defend Beaulieu by asking why in the world Claude Julien would have Rinaldo on the ice with 20 seconds to go and the Bruins down two. The intent seems clear, and no doubt their defense will rest on saying that Beaulieu had to protect himself with a player like Rinaldo coming after him.
Coach Michel Therrien started down that road after the game when he said, “You see guys like that coming with 30 seconds left and your first instinct is to protect yourself.”
Watch the hit below:
The DoPS will have some time to make a ruling on whether or not to uphold the one-game suspension or if there will be additional supplemental discipline with the Canadiens not back in action until Wednesday when they head to Pittsburgh.
Beaulieu will not have a hearing for the hit.
— Renaud Lavoie (@renlavoietva) November 8, 2015
Dustin Nelson is the News Editor for The Hockey Writers. He’s a contributor to Hockey Prospectus, Hockey Wilderness, and writes a column for Rotowire. He’s also written for Gone Puck Wild, Wild Xtra, InDigest, Electric Literature, The Rumpus, Tiny Mix Tapes, Prefix Magazine & other publications. Have a tip? Email him at dlukenelson[at]gmail[dot]com.