Let's start by saying this: it sucks that Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh has a concussion, apparently suffered when Wayne Simmonds punched him the face on Saturday in Philadelphia. You never want to see somebody get injured, especially something serious like a brain injury that makes him miss time.
That said, take this as a general rule of life: if you hit somebody in the face, you should probably expect to get hit back.
Simmonds, as you know, was given a match penalty for intent to injure McDonagh on this play, and as a result he was given a game misconduct and an automatic one-game suspension. The NHL then kept the match penalty in place, but rescinded the suspension against Simmonds.
A lot of people thought that was the right call. We can argue over it, but one thing is true: the Flyers didn't even get a power play chance after one of their players was cross-checked in the head without provocation, and they were also without a top-line player for 50 minutes of a crucial game against a division rival.
Flyers coach Dave Hakstol said after Saturday's game that he wasn't going to respond to the match penalty against Simmonds, instead only opting to give a death stare and say that he was only happy Simmonds wasn't hurt. (His response on the bench when the call was made was enough to get his point across, too.)
Rangers coach Alain Vigneault was a little more on the nose with it today. (Excuse the pun, given that one of his players has a penchant for cross-checking opponents in the nose.)
Vigneault on McD: "All-Star player gets sucker-punched, goes down, I wonder if that’s Crosby, what happens? What are the consequences?" #NYR— Brett Cyrgalis (@BrettCyrgalis) February 8, 2016
To answer Vigneault's hypothetical with a bit of reality, here's exactly what would happen to Crosby in this instance:
No suspension. So there you go, Alain.