On Tuesday, Mikhail Sergachev slashed Michael Bunting. On Wednesday, Sergachev’s wallet was a little lighter. The NHL’s Department of Player Safety reviewed the play and determined that Sergachev’s stickwork was worthy of a fine.
Tampa Bay’s Mikhail Sergachev has been fined $5,000, the maximum allowable under the CBA, for Slashing Toronto’s Michael Bunting.— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) December 21, 2022
Did Sergachev deserve the fine? Honestly, yeah. It was a pretty egregious slash, well behind the play, that had absolutely no effect on the play. It was so far behind the play none of the officials saw it as they were focused on the play up the ice. Hence, no call on the ice at the time it happened.
slash on Bunting that went uncalled pic.twitter.com/6lv8k7VFRq— Omar (@TicTacTOmar) December 21, 2022
While Bunting wasn’t hurt on the play, those types of slashes can be dangerous, especially if the receiving player has no idea it’s coming.
Should he have been suspended for it? No. A fine is a perfectly fine punishment for it. An argument could be made that there should be a tier system for fines based on a player’s previous history. For instance, Sergachev was fined back in 2019 for a cross-check on Buffalo’s Johan Larsson and was suspended in 2021 for an illegal hit to Mitch Marner’s head. However, the current CBA doesn’t really take that into consideration unless it’s an in-person hearing, which wasn’t the case for this instance.
If you’re wondering why the “maximum allowable” fine is different for some players, it’s because it’s partially based on a players daily salary. If the player doesn’t have an in-person hearing, such as Sergachev, the maximum amount is either 50% of the players daily average salary or $5,000, whichever is lower. For an in-person hearing, that fine can go as high as $10,00 for first time offenders.
With his salary at $7.2 million this year, and about 185 days in the season his average daily salary is roughly $38,918. Half of that is about $19,459. Since the CBA states that it is the lower of the two options, he’s only dinged the $5,000.
However, if a player on a much lower salary, say Nick Perbix ($842,500) is fined over the phone by the league. His maximum fine would be about $2275 because 50% of his daily salary (about $4551) is less than the $5,000.
Could that change in future CBA’s? Possibly, but those are the rules for now and it’s likely the NHLPA would dig in their heels about raising the dollar amount they could be fined when they break the rules.
According to Wikipedia’s list of fines in 2022-23, Sergachev is the second Lightning played to be fined this season, following Pat Maroon’s $2,702 fine for leaving the bench to fight Garnet Hathaway in the game against the Capitals last month. In total, they have $61,171.16 in fines (not including money lost due to suspensions) being levied across the league. That money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.
Lightning / NHL News
Lightning lose 7-4 to Red Wings [Raw Charge]
The Lightning started well, racking up a 1-0 lead and the first 10 shots on goal. After that, the wheels kind of came off. Every time they scored, Detroit had an answer. Derek Lalonde is now up 2-0 on Jon Cooper in the YzerCup Standings.
With a big ol’ winter storm bearing down on Buffalo and the chance the Lightning might get stranded there, the league has decided to postpone Friday’s game against the Sabres. The Bolts will get a couple of extra days of rest before taking on the Montreal Canadiens next week.
New 32 Thoughts interview pod: He is the longest-serving member of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Nigel Kirwan has some phenomenal stories. A Charles Barkley-esque guarantee that you will enjoy this. Links to your preferred platform here — https://t.co/io7Mr1QEpm— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) December 21, 2022
Nigel Kirwan has been with the organization a long time. A very long time. Longer than anyone else. So, you can imagine he has plenty of stories.
Unless you're a Pittsburgh or Toronto fan, every team in the NHL has a player at the World Juniors!— Tony Ferrari (@theTonyFerrari) December 21, 2022
Who should you be on the lookout for? I took a look at one player to watch from every Eastern Conference NHL team for @TheHockeyNews! #WorldJuniors #WJChttps://t.co/EAgN0pP0At
The Lightning have three players going to the World Juniors next week. The Hockey News is telling us that Niko Huuhtanen is the prospect to watch from Tampa Bay.
Both acquired at last year’s trade deadline, Brandon Hagel & Nick Paul have combined for 47 points this year with 25 goals & 22 assists, all while counting for just 5.6% of the salary cap.— Chris Krenn (@Chris_Krenn) December 21, 2022
How the two forwards have helped strengthen the #Bolts top six ⬇️https://t.co/SASBbVIuFW
Some more love for Hagel and Paul, two consistent and effective top-six forwards for the Lightning this season.
Old friend Mike McKenna has some radical ideas for overtime. While the NHL hates anything radical, it would be interesting to see what effect his idea would have on scoring in overtime. It would also be interesting to see how long it would take for NHL coaches to bleed the fun out of an overtime with no offside rules.
SURVEY: NHL Fanbase Annoyingness Survey— JFresh (@JFreshHockey) December 21, 2022
It's the holiday season, so what better time to vote once again on which team fanbase you find the most godddamn annoying?
Is there a fanbase that annoys you? Do they all annoy you? Well, here’s your chance to be heard.
The definition of strength and perseverance. Your Solar Bears family is so proud of you @HunterFejes and we cannot wait to see you on the ice tomorrow! We are with you EVERY step of the way.— Orlando Solar Bears (@OrlandoHockey) December 21, 2022
Ring that bell, Hunter! The forward is expected back on the ice today after dealing with cancer treatments earlier this season.