NASHVILLE -- Nashville Predators captain Shea Weber might have provided NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shananan with his first test of the postseason.
The league will no doubt review the final seconds of Nashville’s 3-2 win over the Detroit Red Wings where Weber roughed up Red Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg, first taking a swing and then shoving his head into the glass.
Zetterberg hit Weber in the back moments before the retaliation from the Predators franchise defenseman, but Weber deflected the question when asked if that’s what set him off.
“I don’t know,” he said. “You guys watched it.”
He said the physical play is something to be expected in this series between two rivals.
“Both teams aren’t going to back down,” Weber said. “It’s going to be a long series.”
Now the question becomes will he be around to play for the entire thing? The hit would probably garner a suspension during the regular season, but during the recent GM meetings in March, Shanahan indicated that the postseason might be different.
“The standard of what is illegal or legal doesn’t change. ... When you suspend a player during the regular season, you’re suspending him over 82 games,” Shanahan said at the time. “[In the playoffs], you’re looking at things in seven-game clumps. It’s a seven-game season each series.”
The Predators are already missing Hal Gill, who missed the game with a lower-body injury, making Shanahan’s decision with Weber even more critical. If Zetterberg wasn’t injured, that helps Weber’s case. Zetterberg wasn’t made available to the media after the game, but an NHL source said that Zetterberg felt fine after the game.