NHL Fines Sabres Coach Ron Rolston; Kessel Suspended Three Preseason Games

11:15 PM, Sep 24, 2013   |    comments
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The National Hockey League has slapped Sabres Coach Ron Rolston with a fine for not doing enough to head off Sunday's brawl against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

A huge fight broke out in the third period of Sunday's preseason match-up between the rival teams at the Air Canada Centre. After Sabres forward Corey Tropp suffered a head injury during a fight with Toronto's Jamie Devane, tempers flared. On the next face-off, Sabres brawler John Scott lined up next to Leaf forward Phil Kessel. The 6-foot-8-inch Scott challenged 6-foot tall Kessel before the puck was even dropped.

Kessel pulled away from Scott and slashed at him once, as two Leaf players intervened, Kessel struck Scott on the back of the leg with a second two-handed chop. The incident then grew into a battle that saw every player on the ice fighting, including the goalies. Sabre goalie Ryan Miller went toe-to-toe with Toronto keeper Jonathan Bernier. Toronto's David Clarkson was ejected for leaving the bench during the brawl, he is expected to recieve a 10-game suspension for his actions.

The NHL cited Rolston for "player selection and team conduct", there is still no word on the amount of the fine.

Shortly after Rolston's fine was announced, Kessel was suspended for the remainder of the preseason.  That amounts to three games.  No regular season games were impacted. 

Here's a link to the video explanation by the NHL's Director of Player Safety Brendan Shanahan.

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