Jan 8, 2014, 2:24 PM EST
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.
- Bernier bests Panthers as Luongo goes from injured (and in street clothes) to back in net 0
- Phaneuf, Cuthbert and Lupul threaten lawsuit after tweet goes to air 48
- Doan: Coyotes rebuild was ‘not my idea, not my ideal situation’ 24
- Video: Kessel says the way Toronto media treats Phaneuf is ‘embarrassing’ 46
- Playoff watch — what the bubble teams need to do 9
- Rutherford: ‘Our guys felt very strongly about reacquiring’ Lovejoy 49
- Winners and losers of the 2015 trade deadline 78
- Giordano to have surgery, is ‘done for the season’ 22
- PHT’s 2015 NHL Trade Deadline Tracker 36
- Ducks get their veteran d-man, adding Wisniewski from Columbus 15
- Wild beat Avs, dying seconds fight set stage for rematch (171)
- Petrovic: Chicago will ‘probably seek revenge’ for Kane injury tonight (82)
- Winners and losers of the 2015 trade deadline (78)
- Trade: Blackhawks acquire Vermette from Arizona for Dahlbeck, first rounder (74)
- Wings get Zidlicky from Devils (74)