Canadiens forward Brendan Gallagher facing lengthy suspension
Photo credit: NHL

Must see: dirty, dangerous hit to the head likely to result in the longest suspension of the season

Published January 26, 2024 at 9:48
BY RYAN SMITHERAM

In the third period of last night's game between the Montreal Canadiens and New York Islanders, Habs forward Brendan Gallagher delivered a vicious elbow to the head of Islanders defenseman Adam Pelech.

With eight minutes to play in the period and the Habs up 3-1, Gallagher skated across the ice and caught Pelech with a nasty elbow to his head that sent the Islanders blueliner to the ice where he remained for a few moments. Pelech was able to skate off the ice under his own power after a visit from the Islanders training staff, but did not return to the game. Gallagher was assessed a major and game misconduct for an illegal check to the head on the play.


Gallagher's former teammate and current ESPN analyst P.K. Subban weighed in on the hit and was not pleased with Gallagher's actions.


"It's a great game, everything is good and then there's this play," said Subban. "It's not a hockey play. It's not a collision in the corner. It's not a battle for the puck. This is a guy skating the puck through the middle of the ice and Gallagher throws his elbow right into his chin. I don't know how else I'm supposed to call that, but to me those are the hits that we just can't have. That's just inexcusable. There's no upside."


Although Gallagher has never been suspended before, he is likely going to face a heavy suspension for this hit. Not only is it a deliberate attempt to hit Pelech in the head, but it is also a blindside hit, something the league has made a point to remove from the game. There is no word on whether Gallagher will have a phone or in-person hearing with the Department of Player Safety yet, but it is almost a guarantee it will be an in-person hearing to give Player Safety the ability to suspend the 31-year-old for more than 5 games. I wouldn't be shocked if this resulted in the longest suspension of the season (if you exclude Shane Pinto's 41-game suspension for gambling).
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January 26   |   405 answers
Must see: dirty, dangerous hit to the head likely to result in the longest suspension of the season

How many games will Gallagher get for his blatant head shot on Pelech?

1-2 games5313.1 %
3-4 games11127.4 %
5-9 games24159.5 %
10 games or more00 %
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