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Penguins angered by non-call against Ovechkin, Capitals

Monday, Jan. 23, 2012

The Penguins are unhappy that no penalty was assessed to Washington star Alex Ovechkin for his hit on defenseman Zbynek Michalek during Sunday's overtime win at Consol Energy Center.

The NHL announced Sunday night that both Ovechkin and Michalek will have hearings today concerning their respective hits in the second period. Penguins defensemen Kris Letang and Deryk Engelland have already been suspended this year.

Early in the second period Sunday, Ovechkin left his skates and launched his left elbow into Michalek's head.

"I was a little surprised (no penalty was called)," Michalek said. "To me, when the play happened, he just went for my head. I've been told that he left his feet. Hit my head. To me, it's definitely a penalty. They didn't call it. It should have been called for sure."

Ovechkin, who has been suspended twice — once for a knee-on-knee hit, the other for a hit from behind — has a history of leaving the ice while throwing hits. Under NHL rules, a player is to receive a charging penalty when his skates leave the ice on a hit.

"It's not the first time he's hit me or somebody else like that," Michalek said. "Some players are more protected than the others. It should be an even field."

Later in the second period, Michalek was penalized for throwing an elbow in the same corner of the ice where he absorbed Ovechkin's hit.

"It was a good call," Michalek said. "I elbowed the guy. I just told the ref that if he's going to make the call on me, he should make it on (Ovechkin), too."

When a reporter asked Penguins coach Dan Bylsma for his thoughts on a hit in which Ovechkin "appeared" to leave his feet, he made it clear he wasn't pleased.

"Your analysis was that he appeared to leave his feet," replied Bylsma, whose facial expression and subsequent silence indicated he was unhappy that no penalty was called.




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