Lately it seems like Joe Thornton has been adjusting his style of play to fit with his likely bottom six deployment for the reminder of the season and into the playoffs. With that he’s add a bit of chippiness to his game, that is generally welcome, but crossed a line Thursday night in Winnipeg and received a fine of $3,017.24 for it.
Toronto’s Joe Thornton has been fined $3,017.24, the maximum allowable under the CBA, for Interference on Winnipeg’s Mathieu Perreault.
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) April 23, 2021
— NHL Safety Watch (@NHLSafetyWatch) April 23, 2021
The fact that Perreault had no reason to expect a hit coming and of course Perreault’s history of head injuries make the hit concerning, but the good news was that Perreault was able to return to game.
Both teams played hard, physical games and it should make for an interesting Saturday night matchup tomorrow. And while our official statement is we don’t condone reckless hits, the fact that Galchenyuk, Foligno, Thornton, and Simmonds were all playing with more of an edge last night is an encouraging development heading into the playoffs. Ideally they’ll stay under the radar of Player Safety in the future though.