Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn is paying the price for his dirty hit on Vegas Golden Knights star Mark Stone during Game 3 on Tuesday night. Per NHL Player Safety, the veteran has been suspended for two games for the cross-checking penalty.
In all honesty, this suspension feels warranted. After Benn took down Stone, he could've just continued on through the neutral zone. Instead, he puts both hands on the stick and shoved Stone in the face:
Dallas’ Jamie Benn has been suspended for two games for Cross-checking against Vegas’ Mark Stone. pic.twitter.com/EvNQemHx4a
— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) May 24, 2023
Jamie Benn spoke out on the situation Wednesday and didn't really take the blame for it, either:
“‘I would have liked to not fall on him and use my stick as a landing point.”
Now, he's costing the Stars. Benn is one of their best players and a true leader. While he's only scored three goals and tallied eight assists in the playoffs, the 33-year-old had 78 points in 82 regular-season games. With Peter DeBoer's squad facing a 3-0 hole at the moment, it's going to be a serious uphill battle without Benn.
The team actually defended Benn's hit on Stone, with DeBoer saying his captain felt really bad about the whole ordeal:
“I don’t think anyone in the building feels worse than he does about it. I’m not going to pile on him,” DeBoer said of Jamie Benn. “He’s been a leader here for his entire career and leads by example every day on and off the ice. He made a mistake. Fortunately, Mark Stone’s OK.”
If the Stars don't manage to win on Thursday, Benn will miss the first game of the 2023-24 season.