Phoenix Coyote captain Shane Doan may have to watch from afar as his team makes its playoff push. Doan met with NHL officials at 2 p.m. Arizona time to discuss his elbow on Dallas Star's forward Jamie Benn that sparked a riot on the ice early in the second period.
Doan was just fined $2,500 by league officials Friday for a hit on Calgary Flames defenseman Mark Giordano, and was suspended three games in October of 2010 for a blind side hit. Unfortunately for Doan, the league has come down much harder on repeat offenders.
According the the NHL's rulebook Doan would be suspended under rule 48.1, which reads:
48.1 Illegal Check to the Head - A hit resulting in contact with an opponent's head where the head is targeted and the principal point of contact is not permitted. However, in determining whether such a hit should have been permitted, the circumstances of the hit, including whether the opponent put himself in a vulnerable position immediately prior to or simultaneously with the hit or the head contact on an otherwise legal body check was avoidable, can be considered.
Stars coach Glen Gulutzan said after the game Tuesday, "I think it is a suspendable offense. He targeted the head with his elbow. The league will look at it for sure and decide. But it's deliberate."
The Coyotes expect a decision to come down from the NHL later today. The Coyotes face the Colorado Avalanche Thursday and the San Jose Sharks Saturday, both crucial games that will impact the standings.
Here's video of the play: