Dallas Stars winger Antoine Roussel will have a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety on Monday for his sucker punch to the head of Sharks defenseman Justin Braun.
As Saturday night’s contest between the San Jose Sharks and Dallas Stars wound to a close, Stars winger Antoine Roussel received a misconduct for a hit to the head of Sharks goaltender Alex Stalock.
Initially, it seemed as if Roussel, if he were to face supplemental discipline at all, would receive it for his hit on Stalock. However, the NHL Department of Player Safety announced Sunday that pesky 24-year-old will instead face a hearing for the sucker punch to Sharks’ defenseman Justin Braun that followed:
It's hard to imagine Roussel will receive a mere fine for the sucker punch. Taking advantage of a player who is in a vulnerable position, being restrained by a referee, is worthy of at least a couple of games on the sideline. It would be shocking if Roussel is levied anything less than a pair of contests as discipline.
The native of France has been known to play with a little bit of edge. In fact, it’s what makes him a big part of the Stars success. Though pesky players have been slowly leaving the game, Roussel has found a nice spot on the Stars bottom-six.
In the 2013-14 season, only three players had more than 200 penalty minutes, Roussel being one. However, he also contributed 14 goals and 29 points while playing largely bottom-six minutes. Roussel is one of the last of his kind, but he plays the role to perfection, and the risk with employing a player of his kind is just this kind of play.
Roussel’s hearing will take place on Monday.