During last night’s game between the Calgary Flames and the Nashville Predators, Flames defenseman Dennis Wideman went apeshit on linesman Don Henderson, cross-checking him to the ice right in front of both benches as the player skated off.
Wideman, who was checked down himself just seconds before his illegal play on Henderson, looked as if he deliberately attacked the referee, presumably, for missing a call on that previous play—which he didn’t even receive a penalty for.
Wow. Dennis Wideman just high sticked linesman Don Henderson on the way to @NHLFlames bench. Being woozy prevents Wideman penalty?
— Doug Dirks (@cbcDougDirks) January 28, 2016
The player did try to address the incident following the game, via Calgary Herald‘s Kristen Odland’s Twitter:
Dennis Wideman on hitting linesman Don Henderson: “I was just trying to get off the ice. And, at the last second, I looked up and saw him.”
— Kristen Odland (@KristenOdlandCH) January 28, 2016
Few bought the excuse after seeing the hit, though, as it appears as if Wideman sped up while approaching Henderson, lowering his shoulder and leaning into the ref to knock him viciously to the ice.
— Pat Leonard (@PLeonardNYDN) January 28, 2016
As for possible discipline for Dennis Wideman, according to ESPN, if it’s determined that any player “deliberately attempts to injure an official,” the punishment is an immediate 20 game suspension.
Who knows how this will shake out, but with no remorse immediately after nor visual evidence that it wasn’t anything but a dirty ass play, Wideman should probably expect to be sitting for the next few weeks.
I’m sure details are sure to come.
Flames’ Dennis Wideman LOSES HIS MIND, Viciously Cross-Checks A Ref To The Ice