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DeAngelo on spearing Perry: 'I wasn't looking for it to go there'

Tony DeAngelo Tony DeAngelo - The Canadian Press

Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Tony DeAngelo received a five-minute major and a game misconduct for spearing Tampa Bay Lightning winger Corey Perry in the third period of his team's 5-2 loss on Tuesday.

DeAngelo, who was away from the play when Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy froze the puck, skated a group of players in front of the netminder and drove his stick into Perry.

The 27-year-old said postgame he was intending to give Perry 'a shot,' but did not mean to hit him in the midsection. 

"I was trying to give him a little shot. I wasn't looking for it to go there," DeAngelo told reporters. "He tried to slash my stick out of my hands the second beforehand. He talks all game. So, asked him to fight. Doesn't want to fight. He'll tell you that he's asked me to fight for years. I don't say no. So there's not much of an argument there.

"...Replay probably looks a bit worse than it was meant to be. But it is what it is. I took 30 punches on the ground. And when I get up, they don't let me do what I got to do. So it's whatever."

Flyers coach John Tortorella, who has been a vocal supporter of DeAngelo since the team acquired him in the off-season, said he wasn't ready to judge the action Tuesday without reviewing the video.

"I haven't seen the clip. Guys in the room said it was pretty obvious. But that's the line you walk as far as going over the edge," Tortorella said. "I want him to have that personality, that competitiveness. A couple of guys I did sit, I wish a little of that would rub off on them." "But again, I haven't seen it, but I think he may have crossed the line. You've got to be careful.

"That's a part of who Tony is, and I think he's done a pretty good job this year in staying on that line (while) competing. Because he competes. Maybe he crossed it tonight. I've got to look at the tape."

DeAngelo, who received a team suspension from the New York Rangers in 2021 before being bought out, has one career previous NHL suspension, stemming from an altercation with a referee in 2017.

He has 10 goals and 34 points in 59 games with the Flyers this season, his first with the team after being traded from the Carolina Hurricanes last summer.