NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan has suspended Minnesota Wild forward Pierre-Marc Bouchard for two games for an incident that took place on Saturday.
Bouchard's high stick hit Blue Jackets winger Matt Calvert in the face following a faceoff in the Wild's 4-2 season-opening victory over Columbus. Calvert lost teeth and needed stitches on his lip but returned and got an assist in the third period. Bouchard was assessed a double-minor for the infraction.
Head coach Scott Arniel was livid Bouchard wasn't called for a major, alleging Bouchard took a "baseball swing" at Calvert's face.
"It's definitely an intent to injure," Arniel said. "They said it was deflected off our guy's stick and into his face. Our whole bench saw it. Their whole bench saw it."
Bouchard's agent Allan Walsh however supported his client and said that there was definitely no intent on the play.
"Pierre-Marc Bouchard is one of the most sportsmanlike and gentlemanly players in the game today," he said. "The notion that Pierre-Marc Bouchard intentionally swung his stick into the face of an opponent is patently absurd.
"He's just not that kind of player."
Walsh went on to question Shanahan's decision to suspend Bouchard.
"What message is Brendan Shanahan sending with this unwarranted suspension?" he asked. "This result is a shameful farce for the League."
Under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement, Bouchard will forfeit $44,108.10.
He will miss games on October 10 against the Islanders and October 11 against the Senators, both road games, and will be able to return to play in a home game against Edmonton on October 13.