The season is exactly one day old and the Department of Player Safety already has some work to do. The department announced today that Sammy Blais of the St. Louis Blues will have a hearing today for an illegal check to the head on Colorado Avalanche defenseman Devon Toews. Blais was given a two-minute minor penalty for elbowing during the match.
Toews was forced to leave the game but did return to log more than 22 minutes for the Avalanche.
This would be the first suspension in the new season and it seems as though any punishment would be even more punitive than normal. The schedule only has 55 more games on it for the Blues and every one of them is against a divisional opponent. The versatile Blais is an important part of head coach Craig Berube’s physical system, though he doesn’t drive offense or play a ton. His 155 hits last season led the Blues despite playing only 40 of the team’s 71 games.
Like every other team this season, St. Louis doesn’t have much time to sit around and wait for a ruling. The team is back in action against the Avalanche tomorrow night.