The NHL has announced a one-game suspension for Colorado Avalanche’s Cale Makar following a late hit on Jared McCann of the Seattle Kraken. The incident occurred during Game 4 of the First Round of the Stanley Cup playoffs, a series currently tied 2-2. As a result of the hit, McCann did not return to the game and has been ruled out for Game 5.
Despite struggling in the playoffs with just one assist in four games against the Avalanche, McCann was a standout player during the regular season, scoring 40 goals and 30 assists for a total of 70 points in 79 games. The Kraken will be eager to have McCann back in the lineup as they continue their playoff run, but his absence in Game 5 will undoubtedly be felt by the team.
On the other side, Makar has been an important contributor for the Avalanche in the series, with one goal and two assists in four games against Seattle. His suspension for Game 5 will also be a significant loss for Colorado as they look to break the series deadlock. The Avs are also currently without Valeri Nichushkin as he left the team for personal reasons.
There was no reason for the hit and it resulted in injury, so a fair punishment for Makar who’s certainly not seen as a dirty player. Hopefully this is just one game for each and McCann can return in Game 6 to try and help lead the Kraken to their first ever playoff series win.