The NHL suspended Seattle Kraken forward prospect Jacob Melanson two games Tuesday for an illegal check to the head of Edmonton Oilers forward James Hamblin.
In a preseason game between the Kraken and Oilers Monday night in Seattle, Hamblin passed a puck off the boards and Melanson arrived late to hit him, making his head the main point of contact.
“Melanson chooses an angle of approach that cuts across the front of Hamblin’s body, missing his core and picking the head,” an NHL Department of Player Safety official said in an explanation video. “If Melanson wants to deliver this hit, he must stay low and choose an angle that leads to a full body check through the shoulder or chest, rather one that makes the head the main point of contact.”
Melanson, a fifth-round draft pick by the Kraken in 2021, has yet to make his NHL regular-season debut. The Department of Player Safety official said Melanson must serve the suspension “in the next two consecutive games in which he is eligible to participate for his club.”
Melanson’s junior league in Canada, the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League, suspended him for four games earlier this year for making knee-on-knee contact with another player
It is the first player suspension in the history of the Kraken, which made its debut as an expansion team last season.
–Field Level Media
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