Toronto Maple Leafs offered in-person hearing for cross-check after empty-netter

Toronto Maple Leafs defenceman Morgan Rielly has been offered an in-person hearing for cross-checking Ottawa Senator’s Ridly Greig Saturday night.

The NHL Department of Player Safety announced the news on X, formerly known as Twitter, Sunday afternoon.

Rielly cross-checked Greig to the head after the Senators player fired a slap shot at an empty net in the last 5.1 seconds of Saturday’s game, which Ottawa won 5-3.

After the game, Maple Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe stood by Rielly’s action. “I thought it was appropriate,” Keefe said. “Our players have the right to react.”

Toronto captain John Tavares said his team obviously didn’t like the result on the empty netter. “We’re going to stick together and stand our ground when necessary.”

The date and time of the hearing has not been determined. Toronto will host the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday.

The in-person hearing will give the league the opportunity to suspend Rielly, which has never happened to the defenceman in his 11-seasons NHL career. 

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