Kings forward Brendan Lemieux won’t skate for Los Angeles’ next five matches.
Lemieux will sit out during a five-game suspension after he gnawed on Brady Tkachuk’s left hand during the Kings’ 4-2 victory on Saturday night. He will also forfeit $38,750 in salary. He initially was assessed a match penalty and ejected from the matchup, but the NHL Department of Player Safety announced the suspension and fine on Tuesday after further review.
The video review shows Lemieux engaging with Tkachuk from the back. Then, the two go down to wrestle on the ice. The camera angle shows Tkachuk’s hands getting caught in Lemieux’s face before they were forcibly separated by officials.
Although Tkachuk got up and explained to officials that Lemieux bit him — he even showed off his bloodied right hand — the NHL explained that the suspension was a result of the first bite to Tkachuk’s left hand as they fell to the ice.
“This is not a hockey play,” the NHL said during the video review. “This is a player delivering a forceful, intentional and potentially dangerous bite to the hand of another player with sufficient force to puncture the skin. Such actions will not be tolerated.”
The suspension — this time for biting — marks Lemieux’s third of his career. He was most recently suspended for two games in 2020 for an illegal check on Avalanche forward Joonas Donskoi. He was also suspended for two games in 2018 for an illegal check to the head of then-Panthers forward Vincent Trocheck.
Lemieux has played in 14 games this season after being traded to Los Angeles from the Rangers on March 27. He totals four goals with an assist and five points.
Tkachuk is likely still unhappy with the Kings forward. After the Kings defeated the Senators at home on Saturday night, Tkachuk shared his thoughts on the incident. He ranted, shared a variety of insults and said, “Kids don’t even do that anymore. Babies do that,” per Ottawa Sun columnist Bruce Garrioch.