Winnipeg Jets forward Mark Scheifele will have a hearing Thursday for charging Montreal Canadiens forward Jake Evans, the NHL’s department of player safety has announced.
Winnipeg’s Mark Scheifele will have a hearing today for Charging Montreal’s Jake Evans.
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) June 3, 2021
As Scheifele’s hearing is not in person, the maximum suspension he can be assessed is five games.
Scheifele hearing is not an in-person hearing. Maximum suspension is 5 games
— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) June 3, 2021
The incident in question happened in the final minute of Montreal’s Game 1 victory over Winnipeg. With the Canadiens leading 4-3, Evans chased the puck into the Jets’ zone, and curled around the back of the net to score an empty-net goal. As Evans came around to the net-front, he was levelled by Scheifele, who’d skated from the Canadiens’ goal-line, down the length of the ice, and left his feet as he collided with Evans.
The young Canadiens centre’s head appeared to hit the ice as he fell, and he remained down and motionless for some time as a scrum ensued between the two teams. Evans was eventually taken off the ice on a stretcher, while Scheifele was assessed a major penalty and a game misconduct.
The Canadiens have yet to release an update on Evans’ condition. As of head coach Dominique Ducharme’s post-game press conference, the rookie was still at the arena being evaluated.
Montreal interim coach Dominique Ducharme called the hit “vicious“ and “useless.”
“It was a dirty hit, but the league’s going to take care of it,” Canadiens defenseman Joel Edmundson said. “If he gets back in the series, we’re going to make his life miserable, but I think the league’s going to do a good job with that.”
Jesperi Kotkaniemi and Eric Staal scored early goals and Montreal beat the Winnipeg Jets 5-3. Nick Suzuki and Brendan Gallagher also scored for Montreal, Edmundson and Jeff Petry each had two assists and Carey Price made 27 saves. Adam Lowry, Derek Forbort and Kyle Connor scored for Winnipeg, and Connor Hellebuyck stopped 28 shots.
Fans were allowed inside Bell MTS Place for the first time this season. The Manitoba government allowed 500 fully vaccinated health-care workers to attend.
It was Winnipeg’s first game since May 24, when it swept the Edmonton Oilers. Montreal overcame a 3-1 series deficit and eliminated the Toronto Maple Leafs on Monday night in Game 7.