Jamie Benn may return to Stars Tuesday as NHL opts not to discipline Hanzal
By Allan Muir
Stars GM Joe Nieuwendyk told Dallas Morning News beat writer Mike Heika this afternoon that the NHL is not considering supplemental discipline for Martin Hanzal after the Phoenix forward's blindside hit knocked Jamie Benn out of Saturday's game.
That's not necessarily a surprise -- we likely would have heard yesterday if a hearing was on tap -- but this is the first confirmation that Hanzal is off the hook.
Dallas fans won't be happy, especially since there was no penalty during the game, either, but honestly this could have gone either way. Hanzal has a record with the Department of Player Safety and Benn had to leave the game, but the Stars center also spent a little too much time admiring his own shot and opened himself up to get plastered.
"I got my bell rung," Benn said Monday. "I didn't really see him, but [Brendan] Shanahan said it was a clean hit, so I'm moving on. It is what it is."
Benn confirmed at practice this morning that he didn't suffer a concussion as a result of the hit, but it's not a sure thing that he'll be available when the Stars host Nashville on Tuesday. The problem, he said, is his wrist.
"It was a separate play [from the Hanzal hit]. I just jammed it. It swelled up a bit, I got some treatment. I'll practice tomorrow and take it from there."Benn's had a rough go of things lately, with just three assists and a minus-eight rating in his last six games. Still, he can be Dallas' best player on any given night, so having him healthy is critical if the Stars are to continue their surprising run at a playoff berth.