Phoenix Coyotes winger Paul Bissonnette was given an automatic 10-game suspension for leaving the bench to join an altercation during NHL preseason Game No. 9 against the Los Angeles Kings on Sept. 15.
The NHL announced Saturday that it reduced his suspension from 10 regular season games to three because it was a preseason game with less video evidence available. With less video, the precise timing and circumstances of the incident and when Bissonnette entered the ice are unclear.
Bissonnette appealed his 10-game suspension because he claimed he entered the ice legally, as a substitution for teammate Max Domi. However, video evidence shows that there were six Phoenix players on the ice, and Bissonnette was considered the "extra" man. None of the on-ice officials definitively contradict Bissonnette's contention. Because the League dropped the penalty from 10 games to three, Bissonnette and the NHLPA have agreed to drop the appeal.