League hits Flames’ Wideman with 20-game suspension for checking linesman

Jared Clinton
Dennis Wideman (Norm Hall/NHLI via Getty Images)

The NHL has come down hard on Dennis Wideman, as the Calgary Flames defenseman has been suspended 20 games for delivering a check to linesman Don Henderson.

The league stated Wideman’s suspension falls under Rule 40, which is physical abuse of officials. Per Rule 40.1, which appears to be the guideline used in this instance, “(any) player who deliberately strikes an official and causes injury or who deliberately applies physical force in any manner against an official with intent to injure, or who in any manner attempts to injure an official shall be automatically suspended for not less than twenty (20) games. (For the purpose of the rule, ‘intent to injure’ shall mean any physical force which a player knew or should have known could reasonably be expected to cause injury.)”

As if the 20-game ban isn’t enough, the suspension will also cause Wideman, 32, to lose $564,516.20 in salary, all of which will go to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund. Prior to this suspension, Wideman had never been fined or suspended by the league.

Wideman’s suspension means he’ll be out of the lineup until Mar. 14, and miss crucial games as the Flames attempt to make up some ground in the Pacific Division and earn themselves a playoff berth.

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Wideman hearing centers around issue of workplace safety for officials

Dennis Wideman Photo by Gerry Thomas/NHLI via Getty Images)

One of the more interesting discipline hearings of this season will take place this afternoon when Calgary Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman defends himself at the NHL offices in Toronto. Suffice to say there are a number of moving parts at work here.

The NHL is faced with a vexing situation. On one hand, if it does not suspend Wideman at least 10 games for abuse of an official, there is little doubt the on-ice officials who work the 1,230 games each season will not be happy. Linesman Don Henderson reportedly spent a night in hospital after being crosschecked from behind by Wideman in the Flames 2-1 loss to the Nashville Predators last Wednesday and the officials, quite understandably, are concerned about their workplace safety.

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Rumor Roundup: Decision time looming for playoff bubble teams

Nick Schultz (Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

With the Feb. 29 trade deadline less than a month away, the general managers of several playoff bubble teams must soon determine if they’ll become buyers or sellers in the coming weeks.

Emerging from the NHL all-star break, the New Jersey Devils and Philadelphia Flyers were one and five points outside the Eastern Conference playoff picture, respectively. Like the Flyers, the Vancouver Canucks sit five points back in the Western Conference postseason chase. The Calgary Flames, meanwhile, are 11 points out and fading.

NorthJersey.com’s Tom Gulitti believes Devils GM Ray Shero owes it to his hardworking players to bolster their weak offense. He notes Shero isn’t keen to part with assets for a rental player, preferring instead to add younger players who could fit into the Devils long-term plans. Gulitti points out such deals tend to be uncommon at the trade deadline.

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Dennis Wideman suspended indefinitely pending hearing after running into linesman

Jared Clinton
Dennis Wideman (Rich Lam/Getty Images)

Calgary Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman will have to wait until after the all-star break to learn his fate after he ran over linesman Don Henderson in Wednesday’s game against the Nashville Predators.

According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, Wideman, 32, will be suspended indefinitely following the incident Wednesday. The league won’t decide on what punishment, if any, will be handed to Wideman once the all-star break concludes. The hearing could come Tuesday, Feb. 2, Dreger reported.

Wideman’s collision came in the second period of Calgary’s 2-1 loss to the Nashville Predators. After getting hit by Miikka Salomaki, Wideman went hard into the boards and appeared to be laboring as he headed off the ice. As he neared Henderson, Wideman collided with the linesman and knocked him to the ice: Read more

Rumor Roundup: Yandle, Hudler and McGinn will draw interest at deadline

Keith Yandle (Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images)

The New York Rangers enter the all-star break sitting second in the Metropolitan division and third in the Eastern Conference standings. However, some Rangers followers are grumbling over the club’s inability to dominate the Conference as they once did. Only four points separates the Blueshirts from the New Jersey Devils, who sit just outside the Eastern playoff picture.

Brett Cyrgalis of the New York Post recently observed Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist turns 34 in March. That means the Blueshirts don’t have a lot of time to take advantage of his greatness before his inevitable decline.

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Does Dennis Wideman deserve a 20-game suspension for crosschecking linesman?

Ken Campbell
Dennis Wideman (Photo by Gerry Thomas/NHLI via Getty Images)

You have to wonder how the NHL Officials’ Association feels about the incident in Calgary Wednesday night involving Calgary Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman and linesman Don Henderson. It was a bizarre turn of events, to say the least.

In the second period of the Flames 2-1 loss to the Nashville Predators, Wideman took a pretty substantial hit in the defensive zone, then picked himself up and, as he made his way to the Flames bench, crosschecked Henderson from behind and sent the linesman tumbling to the ice.

Take a look at the incident here:

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THN.com Roundtable: Which young star will reach the 500-goal mark?

Vladimir Tarasenko and Tyler Seguin. (Getty Images)

On Sunday night, Alex Ovechkin became the 43rd player in NHL history to score 500 goals. At just 30 years old and with 800 games under his belt, Ovechkin has a lot more goals in him.

There are couple more veteran active players expected to join him in the 500 club. Marian Hossa sits at 493 and could also hit the mark this year. Patrick Marleau sits at 470 and could conceivably get there next year.

But what about the younger generation of players? The NHL is flush with young snipers, many of whom are far off now, but could one day reach 500 goals.

Here are our picks for players currently under 25 years old who will reach the 500-goal plateau:

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