Evgeni Malkin returned from injury in last night’s Pittsburgh Penguins vs Philadelphia Flyers game but his return was short lived. Late in the 3rd period, Michael Raffl of the Flyers came behind Malkin of the Penguins. The two struggled for the puck but as the small struggle ended, Raffl threw a punch to the back of Malkin’s head. Malkin answer bey turning around, swinging his stick which caught Raffl on the side of the helmet.
Geno Malkin was immediately thrown from the game with a game misconduct and a 5 minute penalty. Following the game, Malkin talked with the media and said that he knows it was a dirty move but it seemed like Raffl dove.
It was announced that Malkin’s hit would be investigated by the NHL Players Safety Association and decided that Malkin would only be suspended 1 game.
It’s an understandable suspension, the hit was a reaction but it was still dirty. Geno could have turned and swung his fist and this would be a different story. If Raffl was a second or less slower, this could have gotten bloody and even more dangerous.
It wasn’t a smart move on Geno’s part especially just coming back from injury. Malkin will return from the suspension in the Penguins’ game against the Calgary Flames on Saturday, February 16th.
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