Detroit Red Wings Teemu Pulkkinen to Face In-Person Hearing for Hit against Chicago Blackhawks Mike Kostka

Jonathan Daniel

From the NHL, Red Wings forward Teemu Pulkkinen will have an in-person hearing in New York with the Department of Player Safety to discuss the aftermath of his first period hit from behind on Blackhawks' defenseman Mike Kostka.

The CBA calls for a player to be given an opportunity for an in-person hearing if the suspension he receives for a play is to exceed five games. Here's video of the hit from NHL.com

That certainly looks from both angles like Pulkkinen got his guy in the numbers in just about the worst area of the ice to do it: just a few feet from the boards.

Kostka left the game and did not return. Joel Quenneville called the injury "not bad, but he couldn't play."

There's the tiniest amount of spin away from the hit at the very last second by Kostka, but I'm not sure that actually changes anything. Pulkkinen had his man lined up from a fair distance and was at the very least reckless in laying the hit. The 5'11" Finn isn't known for physical play, but on his very first shift of his very first game at an NHL level, he laid a hit he probably shouldn't have.

If Pulkkinen is suspended, the games missed will be NHL games. He's not expected to make the club this season, so the suspension will have to wait until he's called up and placed on the roster so he can begin his punishment. The Grand Rapids-bound winger will face the possibility of additional punishment by the AHL as well, but that's entirely up to that league to decide (and yes, they have the authority to do so).

If you'll remember back to 2011, Brendan Smith was suspended 8 games by the NHL for a preseason hit against the Blackhawks' Ben Smith (who scored last night). The AHL also ruled him ineligible to play for a time that included three Griffins games. Smith served his NHL suspension in spurts over the course of the season and eventually joined the Wings full-time.

If/when the Red Wings have the roster flexibility to do so, I figure things would work out similarly with any suspension Pulkkinen receives, with him being called up for games he's not needed just to burn off games in preparation for when he will be needed.

No word yet on Mitch Callahan and whether he'll suffer any supplemental discipline for another hit he laid on Sheldon Brookbank in the 2nd period. Callahan was also given a 5-minute major and a game for that hit.

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