As Tim pointed out earlier today, Patrick Kaleta had a hearing with the NHL’s department of player safety this afternoon and the mood around the NHL is that Patrick Kaleta could be out of commission for awhile.
Kaleta’s latest infraction is based off a hit- or a near hit- from the game against the Columbus Blue Jackets last week, in which he
appeared to be targeting the head of Jack Johnson. Kaleta only clipped/missed Johnson and avioded a very dangerous situation on a dirty hit. Johnson was not injured and Kaleta was not peanalized but none-the-less the NHL took exception to the incident and Kaleta is about to do the time for his crime.
I missed the original hit but after seeing the replay of the incident Kaleta does deserve a suspension for a classic blindside hit in which the head was the principal target. Kaleta, as everyone know’s is a repeat offender and as we’ve learned Brendan Shanahan doesn’t usually go light on repeat offenders or anyone wearing a Sabres uniform. Kaleta has a long history of dealing with the NHL disciplinary and is no stranger to suspensions with his latest last seaosn after he hit Brad Richards from behind.
I guess the good news with this incident is that Kaleta missed his check, had he actually made contact things could have been worse. I don’t know whether Shanahan will look at the intent as well as the result or just throw the book because it’s Patrick Kaleta, but once again he’s in the NHL’s doghouse. When you watch the hit you can see there was intent to lay out Johnson and that won’t bode well for Kaleta.
The question Sabres’ fans need to be asking is not if he’ll get suspend but rather how long he’ll be suspended for. My question to all of you, how many games will Patrick Kaleta sit? Also, what did you think of the hit? Let me know in the comments below.