Last night during Detroit's 3-0 victory over the Florida Panthers, Justin Abdelkader caught Panthers' forward Alexsander Barkov with a crushing hit near the Florida net. Barkov had picked up a puck and was turning up ice to make a play when Abdelkader freight-trained him. The only penalty call on the play was to Alex Petrovic for a retaliatory cross-check to Abdelkader. Here's the video:
As you can see, Abdelkader makes full body contact on a player who had just released the puck. His body raises through contact as a natural feature of hockey hits rather than by Abdelkader "launching" himself into the hit.
Barkov left the game and did not return. He has already been ruled out of Florida's next game as well.
While the Barkov injury makes a questionable hit sound more likely to earn a call from the Department of Player Safety, the report from NBC Sports is that Abdelkader will not have a hearing.
No hearing scheduled for Abdelkader after Barkov hit https://t.co/YIwKJOr9zP— NHL on NBC (@NHLonNBCSports) February 9, 2016
Personally, I agree with the call to not suspend, which is unsurprisingly the same position Jeff Blashill had and the opposite position several members of the Panthers had. These two teams meet again on March 19th in Sunrise, Florida. we'll see whether the Panthers try to "get even" with Abdelkader at that time.