Blue Jackets notebook: Dubinsky avoids suspension
Brandon Dubinsky, second from left, got a match penalty for tangling with the Kings’ Drew Doughty after Thursday night’s game ended. The match penalty was rescinded and Dubinsky is eligible to play on Sunday night against the San Jose Sharks.
SAN JOSE, Calif. — Like so many other whistles earlier in the game, the final horn Thursday night in the Blue Jackets’ 2-1 loss at the Los Angeles Kings was followed by a scrum that nearly devolved into a melee.
Blue Jackets center Brandon Dubinsky was somehow singled out and given a match penalty, which, in addition to 10 penalty minutes, includes a league suspension “until further notice.” The “further notice” didn’t take long.
The league notified John Davidson, the Blue Jackets’ president of hockey operations, general manager Jarmo Kekalainen and Dubinsky after a few hours that there would be no suspension. Kekalainen said the match penalty was rescinded and Dubinsky is eligible to play on Sunday night at San Jose.
“I didn’t think it was going to be a match penalty,” Dubinsky said. “I didn’t think it should have been a match penalty. So, they got it right, in my opinion.”
Thursday’s game was chippy from the start, with three or four instances when it seemed like an old-school brawl was in the offing.
“Everything was a scrum, everybody was into it,” Blue Jackets winger Jared Boll said. “Neither team wanted to give an inch.”
The end of the game was not a surprise. Blue Jackets winger Nick Foligno and Kings defenseman Robyn Regehr locked horns as time expired, and Dubinsky skated toward them. Kings defenseman Drew Doughty arrived from behind and landed a right punch to the side of Dubinsky’s head, prompting Dubinsky to wheel around and start swinging on Doughty.
“I got clocked from behind, so when I turned around, I expected there to be a fight,” Dubinsky said.
Doughty turned his back to Dubinsky, then hit the ice and covered his head. Dubinsky had stopped punching when officials stepped in, a fact that might have spared him with the league office.
“The guy gets down on his knees and wraps his arms around his head,” Dubinsky said. “You can’t keep going at that point.”
The Blue Jackets traveled to San Jose and did not practice yesterday. … Defenseman Adrian Aucoin and center Artem Anisimov are expected to skate with the Blue Jackets today with a goal of playing on Sunday.