In a weird scene during the Anaheim Ducks’ 1-0 win over the Minnesota Wild, Ducks center Antoine Vermette slashed the leg of an official following a face off.
Vermette was immediately given a game misconduct penalty for abuse of an official and ejected from the game. He is also likely facing a lengthy suspension.
The scene unfolded mid-way through the third period on a face off. Vermette was seemingly upset with how the puck was dropped, possibly feeling he was not ready, and decided he needed the linesman to really know how he felt.
There was initially some confusion from everybody involved, including the announcers. But once the replay was shown, it was clear what had happened.
“I can’t believe what I just saw,” one Sportsnet announcers said. “I just can’t believe a player would think he could get away with something like that.”
Even the look on captain Ryan Getzlaf’s face as he was hearing the explanation from the referee was one of “yeah, that’s bad.”
According to the Orange County Register, after the game, Ducks coach Randy Carlyle said Vermette wasn’t vicious and didn’t have malice in striking the linesman. However, Carlyle also said “He touched the official, what are you going to do?”
The NHL is probably going to suspend him.
Here is the entire sequence, via Sportsnet Canada:
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