Detroit’s Danny Dekeyser will likely find himself under the microscope after taking a boarding penalty in the first period of Friday’s game in Washington. Tom Wilson was sent heavily into the boards by Dekeyser with a cross check to the back.
While this type of cross check happens all the time, mostly it’s done in front of the net or when players are standing still. Wilson is clearly skating with speed and at a dangerous distance from the boards. Dekeyser is directly behind and would have to known a shove from this direction would cause Wilson to go into the boards.
He probably still may have gotten away with it if he had pushed Wilson lower down, at the hips or back of the pants. But his stick makes contact part way up the back forcing Wilson’s head and shoulders to remain bent down. There’s no way anything other than Wilson’s head would hit first.
It wasn’t much of a push, and this is one of those instances where if he had done it differently he wouldn’t have even gotten a penalty. That may make the League think the 5 minute major was enough. But the penalty wasn’t for cross checking; it was for boarding. A well deserved 5 minute major not for the act of cross checking but specifically for the danger it caused to a fellow player. This should probably be a one or two gamer as well but sadly won’t be based on the recent string of free passes handed out this week by other violators.