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Kassian to have hearing for incident with Tkachuk

Edmonton Oilers F Zack Kassian will have a hearing Monday after a Saturday night incident with Calgary Flames F Matthew Tkachuk.

The incident happened with just under two minutes left in the second period.

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After being hit in a questionable fashion by Tkachuk for the second time during Saturday night’s game, Kassian retaliated by grabbing Tkachuk and trying to initiate a fight. Tkachuk, who declined the invitation, proceeded to get ragdolled as Kassian threw upwards of 10 punches on the Flames forward.

After the play, Kassian was assessed a 10-minute misconduct and a double-minor.

Kassian has a history with Tkachuk that could explain his explosion. In the same breath, it had been the second time the Oilers forward was hit hard near the boards. Kassian was clearly frustrated, but it doesn’t excuse him attacking Tkachuk.

It’s going to be interesting to see how the NHL handles this. It’s important to note before anything else that the two have a history of their own with instances like this. Much like Saturday night, Kassian has tried to fight an unwilling Tkachuk before. All Kassian received from the November 2018 incident, where much like on the weekend he tried to fight an unwilling combatant, was a triple-minor play in the game.

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Nonetheless, I would be surprised if Kassian was handed a suspension for swinging on Tkachuk. I would think a fine would suffice. But in the same breath, the league may look at things differently.

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On Twitter: @zjlaing