St. Louis’ Pavel Buchnevich has been suspended for two games for Head-butting Arizona’s Lawson Crouse. https://t.co/0PZIpVeX6Y
— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) October 20, 2021
Pavel Buchnevich Headbutt Earns Suspension
After tying the game up earlier with his first goal of the season, Buchnevich collided with Coyotes forward Andrew Ladd. While it first appeared unintentional, Buchnevich’s elbow caught Ladd on the nose, resulting in a small gash on his bridge. Shortly after, Carter Hutton halted play and Crouse approached Buchnevich about his actions. After Crouse roughed him up with a couple of cross-checks, Buchnevich delivered a headbutt to the chin of Crouse.
As per rule 47.4 in the NHL rulebook, Buchnevich received a match penalty for his actions. Crouse, on the other hand, was given a two-minute penalty for cross-checking and was not injured on the play.
This is not the 26-year-old’s first run-in with the Department of Player Safety. Buchnevich was suspended earlier this year, on May 5th for cross-checking Washington Capitals forward Anthony Mantha in the face. Given that he’s only played two full games since that altercation occurred, it’s safe to assume that Buchnevich could miss some time.
What This Means for the Team
Buchnevich was the Blues’ most significant offseason signing. However, thanks to the work of general manager Doug Armstrong, replacing him in the interim is no cause for concern. The Blues have a very potent top-nine, giving them options like Vladimir Tarasenko and youngster Klim Kostin to get more ice-time with Buchnevich out. They may also look to James Neal, who was scratched last night after playing just eleven minutes in the season opener.
The St.Louis Blues square off against the Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday, potentially without the services of Pavel Buchnevich.