Skip to content

Bettman upholds Kaleta’s 10-game suspension

Oct 24, 2013, 1:56 PM EDT

KaletaBlood Getty Images

NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has upheld the 10-game suspension given to Buffalo’s Patrick Kaleta following his illegal check to the head of Columbus’ Jack Johnson.

“Regrettably, Mr. Kaleta stands out for his repeated violations of — and seeming indifference to — the Playing Rules put in place to protect other Players, and, particularly, other Players’ heads,” Bettman explained in a statement ruling. “Specifically, Mr. Kaleta has committed a series of other serious, head-related Playing Rule violations in each of the four most recent prior seasons.”

For Bettman’s complete ruling, click here

Kaleta, 27, announced he’d be appealing the ban on Oct. 16 and his hearing with Bettman took place this past Monday.

According to the ruling, Kaleta was appealing on the grounds that NHL discipline czar Brendan Shanahan “improperly reviewed evidence consisting of prior on-ice incidents” involving Kaleta, “improperly considered Supplementary Discipline fines” assessed against Kaleta and, finally, that Shanahan incorrectly used incidents with James Wisniewski and Andy Sutton as “the most appropriate [disciplinary] comparables.”

It’s worth noting that, despite his lengthy history with the Department of Player Safety, Kaleta had only been suspended once within the last 18 months prior to the Johnson hit, a five-gamer for boarding Rangers forward Brad Richards in March of 2013.

Kaleta’s previous suspensions (four games for headbutting, two games for boarding) happened more than 18 months ago.

As for the next step?

Kaleta can still continue with the appeal process. He has seven days to file through a neutral discipline arbitrator, which would be a landmark decision as no player has opted to go that route since the implementation of the NHL’s new collective bargaining agreement.

According to the CBA, the neutral arbitrator’s decision “shall be final and binding in all respects and not subject to review.”

Two previous appeals — by Raffi Torres and Paul Bissonnette — were heard by Bettman and resulted in reduced suspensions. Torres had his original 25-game ban reduced to 21 games, while Bissonnette had his original 10-game suspension reduced to three.

Latest Posts
  1. Video: Stamkos’ sweet pass sets up Killorn goal

    May 6, 2015, 7:42 PM EDT

    Steven Stamkos, Alex Killorn AP

    Tampa Bay grabs a 1-0 lead in Game 3.

  2. Drouin in: Lightning give promising rookie a shot in Game 3

    May 6, 2015, 6:58 PM EDT

    Tampa Bay Lightning v Florida Panthers Getty Images

    Things haven’t come easily for the high-end prospect.

  3. 2015 Jack Adams Award finalists: Hartley, Laviolette, Vigneault

    May 6, 2015, 6:45 PM EDT

    2014 NHL Awards - Inside Getty Images

    Chosen by the National Hockey League Broadcasters’ Association.

  4. Preds re-sign goalie Mazanec: one year, $575K

    May 6, 2015, 5:30 PM EDT

    mazanecgetty Getty Images

    Czech netminder has appeared in 27 games for Nashville over the last two seasons.

  5. Canada fights back to beat Sweden at worlds

    May 6, 2015, 4:39 PM EDT

    cd0ymzcznguwzdbhnduynddiytjhm2yyzthlmtjjotqwyyznpte4yjcxywflzjzkztgxy2y4njbizwnjnmu5mjzlymnk AP

    Sweden led 3-0 at one point.

  6. Columbus’ Bjorkstrand named WHL Player of the Year

    May 6, 2015, 3:56 PM EDT

    Buffalo Sabres v Columbus Blue Jackets Getty Images

    Scored 63 goals and 118 points this year for Portland.

  7. NHL hockey ops explains no-goal call

    May 6, 2015, 3:00 PM EDT

    “It’s like a horse race — you can’t stand ten feet ahead of the finish line and determine who won a close race.”

  8. Yeo: ‘I hate the word — I’ve never been swept’

    May 6, 2015, 2:26 PM EDT

    St. Louis Blues v Minnesota Wild - Game Three Getty Images

    Yet the Wild coach is now staring it in the face.

  9. Lightning, Habs will play first back-to-back of the playoffs

    May 6, 2015, 1:41 PM EDT

    Tampa Bay Lightning v Montreal Canadiens - Game Two Getty Images

    Teams will meet tonight and again tomorrow in Tampa Bay.

  10. Detroit prospect Larkin ‘not 100 percent’ returning to school

    May 6, 2015, 12:54 PM EDT

    Norway v USA - 2015 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Getty Images

    “I’m still in between and weighing the options.”

  11. Jack Adams Award finalists to be announced tonight

    May 6, 2015, 12:35 PM EDT

    Calgary Flames v Vancouver Canucks - Game Five Getty Images

    Calgary’s Bob Hartley is considered the favorite.

  12. Kovalchuk: ‘We’ll see’ about NHL return

    May 6, 2015, 11:59 AM EDT

    Russia Kovalchuk Hockey AP

    Recently won a KHL championship.

  13. Rangers assistant GM Gorton remains in high demand

    May 6, 2015, 11:25 AM EDT

    2014 NHL Stanley Cup Final - Practice Sessions Getty Images

    Reports now suggest Toronto’s interested.

  14. Report: Bettman ordered to testify in concussions lawsuit

    May 6, 2015, 11:13 AM EDT

    New York Rangers v Phoenix Coyotes Getty Images

    Deposition slated for no earlier than July.

  15. Report: Isles’ Persson signs in Swedish League

    May 6, 2015, 11:01 AM EDT

    New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils New York Islanders v New Jersey Devils

    Fifth-round pick in 2011 spent all of this year in AHL Bridgeport.

  16. Yakupov’s KHL rights acquired by powerhouse CSKA (Updated)

    May 6, 2015, 10:46 AM EDT

    yakupovgetty Getty Images

    The same club that finished first in the league standings this year.

  17. Green feels Caps are more comfortable in one-goal games

    May 6, 2015, 10:01 AM EDT

    Dominic Moore, Marcus Johansson, Mike Green, Matt Niskanen, Braden Holtby AP

    They’ve certainly had more success in them in the 2015 playoffs.

  18. New Oilers GM Chiarelli interviews McLellan

    May 6, 2015, 9:33 AM EDT

    Todd McLellan AP

    The former Sharks coach seems to have interest in Edmonton.

Featured video

Holtby becoming big-time goalie
Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. M. Zuccarello (3190)
  2. M. Giordano (2265)
  3. A. Ovechkin (1933)
  4. C. Perry (1766)
  5. J. Hudler (1633)
  1. K. Letang (1597)
  2. K. Versteeg (1585)
  3. C. Price (1509)
  4. B. Bishop (1457)
  5. H. Lundqvist (1420)