After laying a late hit on Derek Stepan that temporarily knocked the Rangers forward out of Game 3, Brandon Prust will have a hearing with the Department of Player Safety Friday to decide if any supplemental discipline is necessary.
The hit, which came early in the first period, did not draw a penalty at the time, something that Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault said the refs, "missed," after Game 3.
Montreal forward Brandon Prust will have a hearing today for interference for his hit on New York forward Derek Stepan.— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) May 23, 2014
What's of importance here is that this is not an in-person hearing. While Prust is in New York, he'll speak with Player Safety over the phone, which could mean a suspension, a fine, or no supplemental discipline whatsoever. Had Prust been scheduled for an in-person hearing, it would have guaranteed a minimum of a five-game suspension.
#canadiens Brandon Prust hearing will be on the phone. If he's suspended it will be 5 games or less. #tvasports— Renaud Lavoie (@renlavoietva) May 23, 2014
While it was clearly a late hit from Prust, the fact that he led with his shoulder—and not his elbow—and made principle contact with Stepan's chest is probably what spared him of a lengthy suspension.
This second angle is what really will save Prust, and while it's certainly still a dirty play, doesn't look nearly as bad.
The hearing is slated for 4 p.m., and we'll be sure to update the story as soon as the Department of Player Safety's decision is made public.
A big s/t as usual to @MyRegularFace for the GIF.