Boston’s Charlie McAvoy has been suspended for four games for an Illegal Check to the Head on Florida’s Oliver Ekman-Larsson. https://t.co/15U2cH3yq1— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) October 31, 2023
Charlie McAvoy has been suspended four games for his hit to the head on Oliver Ekman-Larsson in the Boston Bruins’ 3-2 OT win over the Florida Panthers on Monday evening. To quickly summarize the DoPS video, McAvoy makes OEL’s head the primary and initial target of contact, and the hit to the head could have been avoidable, with McAvoy having the time to take a different angle to hit OEL’s shoulder or core. He is not considered a “repeat offender” but has been suspended once before, a one-game ban–also for an illegal check to the head in the 2019 playoffs to then-Columbus Blue Jackets winger Josh Anderson.
IMO, it makes sense. If the league is going to crack down on checks that cause concussions and worse, you have to consistently make the punishment fit the crime. It’s a shame for the Bruins it has to be on one of their best defenseman, but for the sake of the league, it’s the right call to make. The B’s will be without Chuckie for their home game Thursday against the Maple Leafs, a two-game road trip to Detroit and Dallas, and one more home game against the Islanders. He will be eligible to return on November 11th as the B’s head to Montreal to reignite another classic Original Six rivalry.