UPDATE: The NHL has ruled that Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk will not receive supplemental discipline for his hit on Jonathan Toews that knocked the Blackhawks forward out of in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Finals Saturday night.
CHICAGO -- While the Boston Bruins might be without Patrice Bergeron after the all-everything center had to be transported to the hospital with an undisclosed injury during Game 5 of the Stanley Cup playoffs, the Chicago Blackhawks might also be missing their best two-way center as well. Jonathan Toews was leveled by Johnny Boychuk with a big hit in the slot during the second period of Chicago’s 3-1 win over the Bruins in Game 5 at the United Center, and didn’t play at all in the third period with what Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville termed an upper body injury.
Toews had cut to the middle of the ice in the offensive zone before shooting at the Boston net, and Boychuk finished a check at the shoulder level that might have also made contact with the Chicago captain’s head. Toews got up and skated raggedly to the bench while chirping at the referee about the lack of a penalty call, and then wasn’t seen on the ice again for the rest of the game.
“It was just a physical game and you’re going to be hitting,” said Johnny Boychuk. “You just try to make your hits as clean as possible. I thought it was a clean hit, and we’ll take it from there.”
Toews was late to get back to the bench for the start of the third period, but remained on the bench for the majority of the final 20 minutes while seemingly lobbying with the trainers to return to the game.
“We're hopeful he'll be ready next game…[it’s an] upper body,” said Quenneville. “We'll see how he is tomorrow.”
A source indicated to CSNNE.com that Brendan Shanahan and the Department of Player Safety have already reviewed the Boychuk hit on Toews.
Official word won’t filter down until Sunday about whether or nor there will be any kind of hearing and/or supplemental discipline for the hard-hitting Bruins defenseman. Given that it’s the Stanley Cup Final, the Boychuk hit would seem to fall more in the “fine category” than the “suspension category” if there is any form of supplemental discipline.
But that’s something to stay tuned for on Sunday after all information has been gathered, and the video has been properly digested by NHL officials.
It should be noted that Johnny Boychuk has a squeaky clean record with the Department of Player Safety, and has never been suspended during his four year NHL career.