Aaron Dell has been suspended three games for the dirty hit that injured Drake Batherson and got him out of the All Star Game.
The NHL’s Department of Player Safety announced the decision on Wednesday, following the controversial play during Tuesday night’s game at the Canadian Tire Centre.
Buffalo’s Aaron Dell has been suspended for three games for Interference on Ottawa’s Drake Batherson. https://t.co/pXXthyGU6h
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) January 26, 2022
“Batherson does not and should not expect a shoulder check from Dell in this situation, much less a high, hard shoulder delivered as Batherson travels towards the boards with speed,” the DOPS said.
Batherson is believed to have suffered a high ankle sprain on the play, and is expected to be out long-term. Ottawa’s leading scorer has 13 goals and 34 points in 31 games so far this season. The 23-year-old was selected to appear in this year’s NHL All-Star Game, but will now be replaced by teammate Brady Tkatchuk due to his injury.
“It definitely stings," Tkachuk said after the game. "It definitely sucks. Quite frankly, it was just a bullsh-t play. What happened was unnecessary and dirty. You just feel for [Batherson]. He's put in so much work to get to where he's at. It definitely sucks."
Some online seem to think Dell got off lightly for his actions, especially considering this wasn't the first time Dell was involved in this type of play.
Aaron Dell hits Tolvanen along the boards and gets called for interference pic.twitter.com/9P6xFrO8ax
— Main Team (@MainTeamSports2) January 14, 2022
“I don’t like calling out other goalies, but they’re not expecting to get hit by a goalie. Just like when a goalie comes out to play the puck, you can’t hit him,” Ottawa netminder Matt Murray said. “I just thought that was a dangerous play that turns out to be a really unfortunate result.”
— Bruce Garrioch (@SunGarrioch) January 26, 2022
Dell gets off too easy. Hope he smartens up gets this nonsense out his game. https://t.co/1IMZYsU3ub
— Brian Boucher (@BrianBoucher33) January 26, 2022
The Senators got the best of the Sabres on Tuesday, posting a 5-0 win. But the overall tone post game indicates that the victory was bittersweet at best.
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