Gabriel Landeskog was suspended two games early last season when he delivered a high hit from the blindside on unsuspecting Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand while completing a backcheck in the defensive zone.
On Monday in Cologne, while representing his native Sweden at the World Hockey Championship, Landeskog landed a similarly predatory hit on U.S. forward Nick Schmaltz, knocking him out of their preliminary round matchup.
— C More Sport (@cmoresport) May 8, 2017
There are a few differences between this hit and the one thrown on Marchand, and even evidence to suggest that Landeskog learned something from the sanctioning he received for that headshot last season. Because while he arrives from the blindside with an intent to punish Schmaltz for his free opportunity at goal, his angle takes him on a direct line through the American’s chest.
It was deemed that Landeskog’s principle point of contact on Marchand was the head.
Still, it’s a late hit and an unnecessary one from Landeskog, who quite clearly took advantage of a vulnerable opponent.
Though Landeskog was not penalized on the play, there’s no promise that he’ll escape punishment from the IIHF.
Schmaltz was down for a moment before climbing to his feet. He left the ice hunched over, and with help from an official.
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