Matthias 'a few inches away' from suspension

QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:38 AM ET

The NHL will not suspend or fine Florida Panthers forward Shawn Matthias for his hit on New Jersey Devils defenceman Anton Volchenkov Monday.

League disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan told Tom Gulitti of the Bergen Record the hit was "a few inches away from being a suspension" but didn't issue a ban on Matthias because Volchenkov's head was not targeted. Shanahan did call Matthias to warn him it was close to being a suspendable offence.

"Unfortunately, you attack the game bent over," Shanahan told Gulitti. "Sometimes your head is leading the way and I felt that this was a close enough check that the Florida player (Matthias) deserved a phone call and a warning that he was close to the edge on this hit and I had that conversation with him and I had that conversation with his GM."

Volchenkov was cut in the face and suffered whiplash on the hit but there's a chance he will play Wednesday against the Columbus Blue Jackets.


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