Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl chastened over spear to groin of Sharks player

Oilers Draisaitl chastened over groin spear

HASH(0xbf7398)

EDMONTON — A chastened Edmonton Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl says he’s OK with a hefty fine and no suspension for spearing San Jose’s Chris Tierney in the groin.

“Obviously it was a stupid play. That’s not who I am. That’s not me. That’s now how I want to be seen as a player,” Draisaitl said after practice Thursday, hours ahead of a pivotal Game 5 matchup with the Sharks.

“I think everyone knows that I’m the last guy that wants to hurt anyone out there or that wants to play that type of game.

“It was a bad play by me so obviously I’m happy with what I got.”

Draisaitl had just 20 penalty minutes in the regular season, but he was given a major and game misconduct Tuesday night when he speared Tierney in a 7-0 blowout by the Sharks.

On Wednesday, the NHL fined him US$2,569.44, the maximum allowed under the collective bargaining deal with players. However, he will not miss any games.

The injury sent Tierney to the dressing room, but he returned to play minutes later.

The win evened the best-of-seven Western Conference quarter-final series at two games apiece.

Draisaitl racked up 77 points in the regular season, eighth best in the NHL, but has disappeared in the playoffs.

The 21-year-old German-born player has no points and one shot on net in four games. In the last two games, he was bumped off the wing on the top line with Connor McDavid and moved to the centre spot on the third line as head coach Todd McLellan tried to jumpstart both Draisaitl and the Oiler offence.

What’s gone wrong? Draisaitl was asked.

“I just don’t think I’ve been playing good enough. That’s it,” he said.

“I have to be better. I have to make sure I’m a force out there. I have to get back to playing my game.”

The slow start raised questions about his health, but Draisaitl dismissed that despite a media scrum he interrupted a number of times with coughs.

“I’m fine,” he said.

In the pre-game skate Thursday, McLellan reunited Draisaitl on McDavid’s wing but bumped down Patrick Maroon from the other side and elevated rookie Drake Caggiula.

McLellan said Caggiula is a tenacious checker and skater and the hope is he can get in on the forecheck, disrupt things and free up the puck.

Dean Bennett, The Canadian Press

Canadian Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Cops For Kids ride wraps in Okanagan

No pomp, no circumstance for end of milestone 20th anniversary fundraising bicycle trip

Province opens ‘middle income’ housing in Kelowna

Prices on the units are $1300 for a one-bedroom and $1780 for a two-bedroom, nearing area-average prices

Former Kelowna cop faces fourth lawsuit alleging sexual assault

Ex-Mountie Brian Mathew Burkett is also separately facing seven charges of breach of trust

Reward offered for return of Kelowna puppy

An 11-week-old boxer-mastiff cross pup was allegedly taken from its Friday, Sept. 18

B.C. or Ontario? Residential school survivors fight move of court battle

It’s now up to Ontario’s Court of Appeal to sort out the venue question

B.C. transportation minister will not seek re-election

Claire Trevena has held the position since 2017

Young B.C. cancer survivor rides 105-km with Terry Fox’s brother

Jacob Bredenhof and Darrell Fox’s cycling trek raises almost $90,000 for cancer research

B.C. migrant, undocumented workers rally for permanent residency program

Rally is part of the Amnesty for Undocumented Workers Campaign led by the Migrant Workers Centre

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Preparations underway for pandemic election in Saskatchewan and maybe B.C.

Administrators in B.C. and around the country are also looking to expand voting by mail during the pandemic

Okanagan company backs Orange Shirt Day contest

Vernon-based Tolko Industries sponsors art contest open to kids from kindergarten to Grade 12

Nearly 20 per cent of COVID-19 infections among health-care workers by late July

WHO acknowledged the possibility that COVID-19 might be spread in the air under certain conditions

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Most Read