The NHL announced on Thursday night that Vegas Golden Knights defenceman Alex Pietrangelo has been suspended for Game 5 of the team’s series with the Edmonton Oilers after blatantly slashing Leon Draisaitl in Wednesday’s loss.
Vegas’ Alex Pietrangelo has been suspended for one playoff game for Slashing against Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl.https://t.co/fK1Lswfwz6
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) May 12, 2023
Just one game is frankly a bit of a shock. Pietrangelo’s actions were absolutely inexcusable and every single Oilers fan in Rogers Place and on Twitter was absolutely livid. Thankfully, Draisaitl didn’t end up getting hurt on the play.
This comes just hours after Oilers D-man Darnell Nurse was also slapped with a Game 5 suspension after allegedly instigating a fight with Nic Hague, although Mark Stone literally revealed that Hague asked Nurse to drop the gloves prior to their scrap late in the third period.
Following the dominant 4-1 win, Draisaitl himself spoke out on the slash, voicing just how dangerous it really was. Via NHL.com:
“That’s a really, really, dangerous slash, you know?” Draisaitl said Thursday. “I think those are things that have nothing to do with hockey or the game. You can seriously, seriously injure someone with a slash like that.”
Connor McDavid also addressed the situation, urging the league to take action:
“I would like to see [Pietrangelo] suspended,” Oilers captain Connor McDavid said after the game. “I mean, it’s as intent to injure as you can get. Time, score, clock all play a factor. He comes from over his own head and places it just kind of under Leon’s chin. You’d like to see something like that suspended. It’s not a hockey play.”
Not even close to a hockey play. In all honesty, though, Alex Pietrangelo should’ve probably been suspended for a minimum of two games. But, once again, the NHL dropped the ball.