Five for biting.
That's the punishment the NHL has settled on for Brendan Lemieux, as the Los Angeles Kings forward was suspended five games for taking a chomp out of Brady Tkachuk's hand during a scrum last Saturday.
Lemieux was assessed a match penalty with just over six minutes remaining in the final frame of the game against the Ottawa Senators.
"In the ensuing scrum, Lemieux follows Tkachuk into the corner in support of his teammate and engages (Tkachuk) from behind. Tkachuk spins and drops his gloves to immediately engage with the player who has grabbed him. Lemieux drops his gloves, and the two grab ahold of each other — wrestling briefly before Tkachuk takes Lemieux down to the ice," the NHL said in its video explanation of the decision.
"While on the ice, Lemieux, feeling Tkachuk's hands on his face as they wrestle, bites Tkachuk on his bare left hand and does so with a substantial amount of force.
"The two continue wrestling and throwing punches as the linesmen attempt to separate them. As the two are being separated, Tkachuk, while still on the ice, immediately informs the officials that Lemieux bit him as he examined his own hands, showing the officials that he is bleeding."
Speaking to reporters after the incident on Saturday, Tkachuk absolutely went off on Lemieux, calling him a "brickhead" while adding some other glorious verbal daggers to his post-game rant.
"The guy’s just a joke. He shouldn’t be in the league. This guy’s gutless. No other team wants him, he’s going to keep begging to be in the NHL but no other team is going to want him, he’s an absolute joke. I can’t even wrap my head around it. People don’t even do this. He’s just a bad guy.
“It’s outrageous. Kids don’t even do that anymore. Babies do that. I don’t even know what he was thinking, he’s just a complete brick head. He’s got nothing up there. Bad guy, bad player, but what a joke he is.”
Key part of this ruling: "While circumstantial evidence supports the argument that Lemieux may have bitten Tkachuk multiple times during this fight, we are limiting our review of this incident to the bite that occurs almost immediately after the players fall to the ice." https://t.co/0X3bGynzBx
— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) December 1, 2021
Brady’s older brother, Matthew, and his Calgary Flames are set to visit the Kings on Thursday but, unfortunately for fans of chaos, Lemieux's suspension means there won't be any sibling-related revenge in the cards — and least not for now.
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