Tanner Pearson has been suspended for the Kings’ two remaining preseason games, plus the first two games of the regular season, for a hit on Edmonton’s Brandon Davidson that makes Davidson’s head “the main point of contact on a hit where such contact was avoidable,” according to a video shared by the Department of Player Safety. Pearson will also forfeit $15,555.55 of his $1.55-million 2016-17 salary due to being suspended for two regular season games.
That’s a reckless hit on Davidson that injured the Oilers defenseman and resulted in the assessment of a five-minute major and a game misconduct for checking to the head. Still, given Pearson’s no previous priors with the Department of Player Safety – a player is considered a “repeat offender” for 18 months following his most recent incident that resulted in a suspension, for what it’s worth – it’s still somewhat surprising that Pearson received as many regular season games as he did.
“I mean, it is what it is,” Pearson said when asked about his reaction to the suspension. “Obviously I didn’t really mean to contact the head, but the way the game is now, it’s one of those things that happened and it’s over with, and I’ve got to pay the consequences.”
Darryl Sutter said “I’m really not sure” when asked if he was surprised at the length of the suspension given his lack of prior incidents that drew extra scrutiny. “Tanner and I talked about it. … It’s accidental, and it’s not premeditated, and it’s not leaving his feet. Whatever they decide, and you don’t know what it is, and how they come up with that, I don’t really know.”
Tanner Pearson, on whether he was surprised by the suspension length give his history:
That’s not my thing to really discuss. They gave me that, and I’m just going to deal with it.
Pearson, on whether he addressed the hit on the call or let others speak for him:
No, I said what I needed to say and how I thought the play went out, and left it at that.
Pearson, on what he recalls of the play:
It was kind of a 50-50 puck, went for the puck, tried to get in the passing lane, tried to hit his shoulder and made contact with his head. It’s not allowed anymore, so it is what it is, and pay your consequences now. [Reporter: Lesson learned?] Yeah, I mean, I don’t want to do it again. I don’t like missing hockey games. It’s unfortunate what happened, and I’ve got to sit out now.