Jan 8, 2014, 2:24 PM EDT
Marek Zidlicky leads New Jersey this season with 42 penalty minutes — and is fifth among NHL defensemen with 21 minors taken — but insists it isn’t all his fault.
“It’s not cool to get a penalty when you just touch the guy with your stick,” Zidlicky said after Monday’s practice. “One time I touched somebody at the glass and he fell down and a penalty is called. That’s tough. I just touched the guy.”
Zidlicky blames his penalties on what he calls the “new NHL,” which he says now has officials calling penalties for things he previously could do when defending opponents.
“They’re looking for more power plays in the games,” he says.
An interesting theory (and an archaic one, considering I haven’t heard “new NHL” in like five years), but one that Devils head coach Peter DeBoer essentially rebuffed. DeBoer told the Star-Ledger that, upon acquiring Zidlicky from Minnesota in Feb. 2012, he was warned about the defenseman’s penchant for taking penalties.
“I remember talking to Jacques Lemaire when we acquired him,” DeBoer said. “Jacques had him in Minnesota. He said, ‘As long as he gets the first minor penalty out of the way in the first period, he’ll be fine after that.’”
In last night’s 3-2 OT loss to Philly, Zidlicky went penalty free — his fourth consecutive game without going to the sin bin. So I guess things are looking up.
- Update: Drouin out with upper body injury, not expected to miss preseason 0
- Report: NHL officials to participate in preseason without new CBA 1
- Evander Kane: I know I can score 50 goals 12
- ‘C’-less Thornton comes out swing against Wilson’s ‘tomorrow team’ talk 18
- Joe Sakic’s now general manager in name too 6
- Update: Giroux out two weeks with lower-body injury 26
- Update: Crosby on ice with Penguins teammates Friday, leaves early 5
- Ouch: Wild reportedly suspend Harding for ‘non-hockey injury’ 28
- Keeping Kuemper: Wild sign goalie to two-year deal reportedly worth $2.5M 15
- Selanne regrets harsh words toward Boudreau 10
- Heeeeeere’s Johnny! Davidson shreds Johansen’s agent for ‘baffling, nonsensical’ contract demands (65)
- Chiarelli: At some point, I’m going to have to trade a defenseman (56)
- Jackets reveal Johansen offers — including an eight year, $46M deal (55)
- Will the NHL publicize divers? (48)
- No icing on the PK? The USHL will see how that looks (43)