This is a pretty open and shut case for a player like Carcillo.
This incident marks his 12th suspension or fine from the National Hockey League, so his repeat offender status is far beyond just a given. He’s the sort of player the league keeps an eye on, the sort of player who skates on the edge of legality every time he takes to the ice.
The incident took place toward the end of the second period and, as the league states, it’s not a hockey play. It’s not involved in the action of getting the puck and it took place after the whistle had blown. Perrault had “relaxed” and was certainly not expecting contact. Carcillo, on the other hand, didn’t seem to care.
“To be honest, I wasn’t thinking about anything,” Carcillo said. “I was on the ice for over a minute, I was pretty tired. Just kind of drifted down, he drifted into me.”
Said “drifting” actually injured Perrault, who is expected to be out for the Jets until after the All-Star break. That’s not great news, but it could’ve been worse considering where the crosscheck took place.
“I must have just caught him between some padding. I’ve gotten hit there, too,” said the accommodating Carcillo. “It hurts…Hopefully, he’s okay. I don’t know what’s going to happen.”
As has been the case with most of these sorts of non-hockey plays, Carcillo is in charge here. He was in control what happened on Friday night and he could’ve pulled away from his intentions at any point and time when he came from behind on Perrault. He didn’t and here we are staring down the face of another suspension.
At this point, one has to be wondering what role a player like Carcillo has in the NHL.
In January of 2012, he was suspended for seven games after attempting to injure Edmonton defenceman Tom Gilbert. He tore his ACL on the play, however, and justice was smiling when Carcillo was announced out for the rest of the season on the play.
And in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs, he received a 10-game suspension for using “physical force” against a linesman while being escorted to the penalty box. This was a weird one and it was reduced on appeal.
As far as the scoreboard goes, Carcillo’s best season thus far has been in 2007-2008 with the Phoenix Coyotes when he put together a 24-point campaign over 57 games. He actually 13 goals that season. Not bad.
But taking everything into consideration, it’s harder to be sold on Carcillo as a valuable NHL player. He has just seven points this season in 31 games and has been a non-factor more often than not for the Blackhawks. The best news is that he hasn’t been a liability yet, but suspensions like this don’t help his cause.