PENGUINS’ SESTITO SUSPENDED FOUR GAMES FOR BOARDING
Pittsburgh Penguins forward Tom Sestito has been suspended for four games, without pay, for boarding Winnipeg Jets defenseman Toby Enstrom during NHL Game No. 984 in Winnipeg on Wednesday, March 8, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced today.
The incident occurred at 13:10 of the first period. Sestito was assessed a major penalty for checking from behind and a game misconduct.
Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement and, based on his average annual salary, Sestito will forfeit $12,777.76. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
For a full explanation of the decision, complete with video, please click on the following link: https://www.nhl.com/video/t-277350912/c-50182103.
* Information provided via NHL Press Release
Now the question is —-was this premeditated. It was no secret that the intensity level was going to be high because of a high hit to the head on Blake Wheeler from Evgeni Malkin earlier in the year. The hit went unpunished and sparked word that there would be retribution.
Well Pittsburgh Penguins coach Mike Sullivan pretty much guaranteed the shenanigans by calling up long time goon Tom Sestito. The dirty play and fighting started early, and culminated by Sestito’s cheap shot to Jets defenseman Toby Enstrom.
Another factor that plays into this suspension is the fact that Sestito will not truly be penalized. Odds are very high that he will be sent down to the AHL, never having to serve his suspension. So should this be served by the coach? Well he called up Sestito because of the pending fights. I remember two years ago when then Calgary Flames coach Bob Hartley was suspended for starting what the league deemed a fighting line against John Tortorella and the Vancouver Canucks. What is the difference with this incident. If anything this is much worse — Sestito was called up from the minors and injured a player. So what should happen?