Photo Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Jujhar Khaira suspended two games for cross-check

The NHL has handed Jujhar Khaira a two-game suspension following his cross-check on Vince Dunn in Tuesday’s loss to the Blues.

The NHL announced earlier today that Khaira would have a hearing for the play.

The incident occurred at 9:03 of the third period after Khaira laid out Dunn with a hit in the corner. The Blues’ defenseman took exception to the hit and retaliated, giving a cross-check to the Edmonton forward. Khaira then retaliated with a hard cross-check to Dunn’s head that the NHL deemed suspension worthy.

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Here’s a look at the sequence:

Khaira was assessed a five-minute major penalty and a game misconduct for cross-checking on the play. Dunn, meanwhile, was assessed a two minute minor for cross-checking.

While Dunn wasn’t suspended for his actions, he was given a fine for his role in the incident. Dunn was fined $1,942.20, the maximum allowable under the CBA, for cross-checking Khaira.

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Retaliation is not something you’d expect to see from the 24-year-old Edmonton forward. He was clearly bothered by Dunn giving him a cross-check, however, and went overboard with his retaliation.

Khaira has been excellent for the Oilers of late, tallying two goals and eight points in the last 10 games. The 6’4″ 212 lbs winger has two goals, 13 points and 32 PIM in 33 games on the season.

Khaira had an assist on Jesse Puljujvarvi’s goal Tuesday, but will be watching from the sidelines for the next two games as the team tries to end a two-game losing streak in home games against the Lighting and Canucks.

    • Clayton

      Exactly??? Watch the replay again. There is HUGE difference between the blow Dunn made and Jujhar made. Jujhar’s cross check was with way more force and aggression and directly to the face/head area. Dunn’s hit was glove/stick area to Jujhar’s helmet. 2 Games is bang on.

      • Rob...

        Put it this way. Two players engage in a fight when a smaller player takes exception to a legal hit he received. Smaller player lands the first blow, then the bigger one takes over hammering the little guy with 5 to the head in a row before the linesmen break it up. Do you give the small guy 2 for roughing and suspend the big guy for 2 games? This is garbage given that both leveled a crosscheck to the head.

      • Dunn crosschecked him in the head first, I would have been fine with JJ punching him until he was TKO’D. But the league as usual takes a situation and immediately hand the disadvantage to the Canadian Franchise yet again. Just another tool in the toolbox to keep the cup down south.

    • BringtheFire 2.0

      Good idea. So jj can waste a game panting while trying to catch Johnny and as for Chucky he’ll take the butt end, draw the ten minutes and leave with the two points.

      Also, check the standings.

  • OldOilFan

    The 2 games is no big deal.

    Better still, it’s evidence of the “Hitchcock shot hear ’round the world” (as in “the NHL brass” and “officiating” taking notice of Hitch’s remarks post-Vancouver loss…)

  • SylarHRG

    I love Khaira. I have no problem with his response, nor the suspension. Although it is ironic that if he only dropped his glvoes and beat the crap out of Dunn, would there have even been a suspension? One will never know. Don’t put up with sh*t JJ, Dunn won’t do that again.

    • OldOilFan

      Agreed. JJ’s response was “normal” and maybe deserved 5 mins and game misconduct. I think the 2 games are the league [brass] slapping Hitch on the wrist for his post game remarks earlier this week. It’s all good.

    • Rob...

      He would have still received two games. See Nurse/Polak and Marchand/Eller scenarios. Fighting an unwilling combatant is OK as long as your skin is lighter than a certain shade.

        • Rob...

          Thoughts aren’t offside because they make you uncomfortable. They are aren’t even offside if they’re wrong. Do your part and prove them ridiculous. I’d love to hear how Marchand escaped league punishment for attacking a player who showboated a goal, when Nurse was punished heavily for fighting someone who, in his and Hendricks mind, injured someone through a reckless play. Neither Eller nor Polak wanted the fight, but I think it would be hard to argue that Marchand’s reasoning was more justified, and Marchand had a massive history of suspensions whereas Nurse did not.

  • OldOilFan

    JJ made his way [to the NHL] by including a large portion of “toughness.”
    Hitch (on the other hand) sees a potential center with size and hands.

    By the time JJ returns, the Oil will be playing better than the past 2 games.

  • Oilers_1978

    the suspension is ok considering safety..but considering the 5 minute major and game misconduct it should be a fine only…and if JJ got suspended Dunn should get one game at least..

    but more concerning thing is that this whole game was a planned NHL event…they did everything in their power to defeat oilers..shame on NHL..these referees are joke…

    main anger of toronto centric NHL is McD in Edmonton…NHL do all sort of match fixing by biased refereeing..then they should have gifted Mcd to toronto by manipulating the draw…

    • OldOilFan

      Toronto: you nailed it, lol 🙂

      T.O. believed “they” deserved to pick McD in the draft. After the lottery balls didn’t fall their way, they went to the bank and withdrew $70M to buy Tavares in the summer. JT wanted to play “back home” in the GTA, anyway. So the Leafs probably spent too much on him. Great player, but he would have signed for less, I think?

    • Retired Secret Agent

      Dude, I’ve been an Oilers fan from the get go. That’s right, I’m not young. What JJ did will send a message, but the Oilers had 3 shots on 5 PP’s. That’s not good either.

  • Heschultzhescores

    How is it overboard? How do you know how much it hurt? No first crosscheck ti the head there would have been no second crosscheck to the head. To me the first one is what causes the whole incident.

  • Rama Lama

    The hit was a retailiation penalty not worthy of a two game suspension……..if the cross-check to the head is worthy of a suspension, then the opposing player should have got one game at least.

    Not calling it both ways is the bigger problem here!

  • Ted

    Khaira was in his right to take appropriate action … Too bad Dunn wasn’t dumbied like Oleksiak tonight. Young Dunn will be sorry he messed with Khaira …. From this day forward he will hate to play Khaira and the Oil forecheck once Hitch gets the guys going! BOOM

  • Coach My PP

    If someone shoots you to kill and misses, and then you shoot him in self-defense-according to NHL you would not be able to plead self-defense because the guy missed.
    They will charge you for murder in the first.

  • JariCurry

    Should have been equal punishment for both. One was retaliation for the hit, one was retaliation for the cross check. It should be irrelevant that one hurt more. They were identical cross checks to the neck.

  • Beer_League_Ringer

    Everyone who has heard me talk about him knows what a HUGE fan of JJ Khaira I am. In this case, the only thing I would change about the ruling is 1 game for JJ instead of 3 (or the fine for JJ and nothing for Dunn). Player safety got this one pretty close to right.

  • TKO

    all the oiler goons get the goon treatment and the fans cry like babies, slew foot Drai i the turtle king, and McDavid already has a rep as the whiniest baby in the league, trying to walk back his criticisms of the refs

  • polsy

    There are a lot of subtleties in what happened there that made Khaira’s response both strong and acceptable. If you decide to take what JJ did out of context and based off of the 2 second clip of his cross check, I can’t help you. Khaira did not take it outside of the lines first, Dunn did and Khaira joined him. Dunn will now play inside the lines. Avoid violence, but if its necessary make your violence decisive.

  • reidgm

    Since Dunn was hit so violently to the head, why wasn’t he taken off for the concussion protocol. While the penalties were sorted out, he was over near the players bench, leaning on it with his head down. And I think Khaira’s reaction was based upon no initial call on Dunn, that penalty was added after the fact.

      • Clayton

        Yes, there is a replay angle that shows the far official with his hand raised while the Jujhar cross check is happening. Can’t say for sure what his call was but considering his arm was fully raised in the shot it is likely he was calling the Dunn penalty.