Despite there being numerous reasons to overturn the suspension to Jakub Voracek for his hit on Johnny Boychuk, commissioner Gary Bettman and the NHL have decided to uphold the decision. Voracek will miss just one more game for the Flyers, and that will be tomorrow night’s contest with the Washington Capitals. It will be a huge loss for the Flyers, not having Jake in the lineup for each of the past two games vs. Washington. For reference, here is the hit that Voracek received a five minute major penalty for.
Voracek's five minute major for interference. pic.twitter.com/aOhD4KhPOg— Broad Street Hockey (@BroadStHockey) March 10, 2019
As stated by Bettman in the official press release, a major reason for the upholding of the suspension was that “it was Voracek who initiated the contact.” The fact that they had ruled Voracek made contact with Boychuk’s head was also of emphasis in the ruling. This is the first time in Voracek’s career that he has been suspended, which makes it surprising that an appeal did not reduce or eliminate his suspension altogether, especially considering the fact the play was called interference on the ice.
Voracek will also forfeit $88,709.68. While it would have been nice to see the NHL show a tad bit of leniency for a player that has never been suspended, and a debatable penalty as is, at least he will be back for the game on Friday night. Toronto will face the Flyers in the second half of the back-to-back, which should help the orange and black tremendously in a rough game on the road.