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Report: Bissonnette suspension reduced to three games (Update: It’s official)

Sep 28, 2013, 6:22 PM EDT

Paul Bissonnette Getty Images

Paul Bissonnette‘s 10-game suspension is reportedly about to get a lot shorter.

Damien Cox of the Toronto Star reported his ban for leaving the bench to fight L.A. Kings forward Jordan Nolan during a preseason game last week was to be cut in half or more. John Shannon of Sportsnet confirmed the report saying the suspension will go from 10 games to just three.

Nick Kypreos of Sportsnet reports the reduction in games comes as a negotiated deal between Bissonnette and the NHL.

With the lack of video of how things played out and everyone having to go by word of mouth to figure things out, this doesn’t come as too big of a surprise. The fact he’ll still have three games to serve, however, is a bit of a head-scratcher.

If he had left the bench on a legal line change and fought, the only punishment he would’ve received would be five minutes in the box.

Then again, without there being much, if any, evidence as to what happened neither side can really prove their case. Bissonnette getting seven games back was probably the best he could hope for.

When it comes to appealing a suspension, this is as close to a “win” as a player can get.

UPDATE (6:58 p.m. ET): It’s official from the NHL – his suspension is reduced to three games. The league cites the lack of video evidence as the main reason for the reduction. Bissonnette will be eligible to return to action on October 10. He’ll give up $11,346.15 in salary to  the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund because of the suspension.

  1. kingsfan93 - Sep 28, 2013 at 6:40 PM

    Well this is complete b.s. to hear about. I mean c’mon….not being enough, if any, evidence to show.

    I wonder what David Clarkson is feeling right now.

    Well this is what to expect from another whining Yotes player.

    • zetaone - Sep 28, 2013 at 8:29 PM

      Are all Kings fans this whiney?

      • Anoesis - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:57 PM

        A call on the ice reversed by the league office without any video to dispute the referee’s call = whiney. Got it.

    • georgejarkko - Sep 28, 2013 at 8:29 PM

      “I wonder what David Clarkson is feeling right now.”

      He’s thinking, “This is why I got overpaid to play in Toronto.”

  2. pxland - Sep 28, 2013 at 6:57 PM

    Biztory!!!

  3. sabatimus - Sep 28, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Nice. The league just took a mandatory 10-game suspension and made it not mandatory. Why have the rule then?

  4. sjsharks66 - Sep 28, 2013 at 8:46 PM

    Love seeing the kings fan complain about shortened suspensions and whining. It’s not like the Kings get away with dodging suspensions or anything, right?

    • Anoesis - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:43 PM

      Probably about the same as the Sharks make it to the Finals.

  5. soj83 - Sep 28, 2013 at 8:47 PM

    The original article on this website made it seem like he left the bench on a legal line change to instigate a fight. Clarkson clearly left illegally. Unfortunately there is no video of the Bissonnette/Nolan fight, so if it was during a play and he swapped for a teammate, it should have been a game misconduct and maybe a suspension. Without a video and my understanding of what happened, I think this was a good call.

    As much as I enjoy Bissonnette’s personality off the ice, it isn’t that big of a deal if he is in or out of the lineup.

  6. rushledger - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:07 PM

    Awesome, much more fair, especially since this was a pre season game.

  7. Anoesis - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:33 PM

    If there’s no video then where did the original call come from? Is the NHL saying they don’t trust their own referees? I find it rather hard to believe that neither NHL club had a video camera at this game.

    Another decision after the fact that makes the NHL look idiotic. Either stick by your guns or don’t issue the suspension in the first place. What a joke.

  8. joey4id - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:37 PM

    So. What justifies a three game suspension?

    • Anoesis - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:40 PM

      Shanny stayed at a Holiday Inn Express last night.

  9. Anoesis - Sep 28, 2013 at 9:39 PM

    NHL spokesperson John Dellapina said last week that “one of the points of the illegal-line-change rule is to prohibit teams from creating an artificial manpower advantage during an altercation. That’s why it doesn’t matter how aggressive Bissonnette was upon arriving at the scrum — simply by being there he creates an odd-man situation that could free up a teammate to do damage.”

    NHL sure sounded confident of its position before it caved like an overcooked quiche. A referee must have called this infraction and the NHL just threw him under the bus. Be prepared for every suspended player to now appeal, no matter what the situation.

  10. sjsharks66 - Sep 29, 2013 at 12:02 AM

    Anyone remember the first meeting between the canucks and bruins after the finals? Lucic was thrown out for leaving the bench illegally. Later they reviewed the tape and said they made a mistake and it was a legal change.

    No video evidence, no proof that it was illegal.

    • Anoesis - Sep 29, 2013 at 12:04 PM

      Perhaps you’d care to explain to the rest of us rubes why the suspension was reduced to three games instead of being tossed. Absent any video to use after-the-fact the league has no business countermanding the referee. No video also means no way to make the case that the ref was wrong.

      • galenyote - Sep 30, 2013 at 3:14 AM

        The refs didn’t see Biz leave the bench. Domi was coming to the bench for a line change and Biz was coming off the bench. The refs noticed the odd man situation and called it on Biz since he was the most recent off the bench. Without video evidence, or confirmation from the refs since the didn’t see Biz coming off the bench there is no direct evidence. But the did say that Biz was responsible for making sure the line change was complete and contributed to the odd man situation on the ice and therefor still gets three games.

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