Philadelphia’s Shayne Gostisbehere has been suspended for two games for Boarding Pittsburgh’s Mark Friedman. https://t.co/1iPEgVipqH
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) May 5, 2021
After Friedman scored an empty-net goal, Gostisbehere shoved him into the boards.
“After [Friedman] scores and the play is over, Gostisbehere raises his stick and delivers a sharp shove from behind to Friedman’s back that sends him dangerously into the boards,” the NHL Department of Player Safety said in their video.
Gostisbehere has not been suspended or fined before, so he has no history, and Friedman wasn’t injured on the play. However, this was a dangerous play by Gostisbehere and something that the league needs to try to remove from the game.
In isolation, this is a fair punishment for Gostisbehere. The play was over and he hit Friedman in a dangerous spot. It’s a cheap shot that shouldn’t be tolerated.
Having said that, this suspension is questionable at best after Tom Wilson received just a fine for his incident on Monday night against the Rangers. Wilson is a repeat offender, punched a prone player in the back of the head, and then injured a star player by slamming him to the ice.
The lack of a suspension for Wilson prompted the Rangers to release a rather aggressive statement on Tuesday night.
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) May 4, 2021
It’s very rare for a team to take such a stance against the league, but it was refreshing to see. What Wilson did has absolutely no place in the game, or anywhere for that matter. He attacked a defenseless player and then slammed another one to the ice.
Gostisbehere will miss the Flyers’ two-game set in Washington, D.C. against the Capitals on Friday and Saturday. He will be eligible to return for the Flyers’ season finale on Monday night against the Devils.