The NHL season has not gone the Sharks way. After starting a perfect 7-0-0, San Jose has gone 1-6-3 since then and have fallen to seventh in the Western Conference.
Now, things may go from bad to worse, as they will could be without one of their top forwards for 10 games.
Ryane Clowe will have a disciplinary hearing on Monday with the NHL regarding a play where he jumped off the bench to engage in an altercation with the Blackhawks Andrew Shaw on Friday.
Shaw had checked Joe Pavelski into the boards near the Sharks bench moments before, and Clow allegedly slid off the bench and made a beeline for Shaw.
Here’s the video of the Clowe incident:
According to NHL Rule 70.1:
No player or goalkeeper may leave the players’ or penalty bench at any time during an altercation or for the purpose of starting an altercation. Substitutions made prior to the altercation shall be permitted provided the players so substituting do not enter the altercation.
Although the replay shows Clowe coming over to grab Shaw, there is no conclusive evidence that shows him jumping off the bench. Neither CSN California (the Sharks feed) nor CSN Chicago (the Blackhawks feed) had cameras capture Clowe departing from the bench. Thus, unless the NHL can find the evidence, it will be hard to slap Clowe with a suspension.
Clowe has already paid the price for the incident, as he is suspended until the hearing on Monday. He did not play in the Sharks 2-1 loss to Dallas on Saturday night.
The gritty forward has struggled this season after scoring 17 goals last season. He has been held scoreless through 16 games with six assists.