“I respect the process,” Snow said. “It was a professionally run process.”
The first broke out in the second period when Martin jumped Max Talbot from behind near center ice and started a fight, presumably in retaliation for an unpenalized hit delivered by Talbot on Feb. 2 against Islanders forward Blake Comeau, who hasn’t played since because of a concussion.
During the third period Friday, Gillies charged after Penguins forward Eric Tangradi and hit him high with an elbow before landing several punches. From the tunnel leading to the Islanders dressing room, Gillies then taunted Tangradi once the Pittsburgh player got up on his skates. Tangradi was diagnosed with a concussion, and he sat out Sunday’s game against the New York Rangers.
Already dealing with a growing number of concussions, including one to Penguins captain Sidney Crosby that has kept him sidelined since early January, the NHL is taking serious measures to punish head contact.
“The actions by the Islanders‘ Gillies and Martin were deliberate attempts to injure by delivering blows to the head of players who were unsuspecting and unable to defend themselves,” Campbell said in a statement announcing the suspensions.
“The message should be clear to all players: targeting the head of an opponent by whatever means will be dealt with by suspension.”
AP Sports Writer John Wawrow in Buffalo, N.Y., contributed to this report.
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