Montreal prospect Alexander Perezhogin’s bright young future just got dimmer. In the fifth game of the the first round in the AHL Playoffs, featuring the Canadiens’ affiliate Hamilton Bulldogs with a 3-1 series lead on the Cleveland Barons, Perezhogin was assesed a major penalty for attempt to injure and was ejected from the game at 18:38 of the first period during a scoreless tie.
Perezhogin and Barons defenceman Garrett Stafford were battling in front of the Cleveland net. Stafford fell down on Perezhogin, got to his knees and swung his stick viscously, narrowly missing the young Russian’s head. Perezhogin then placed both hands on his stick, quickly got up, spun around, and made a baseball-style swing to the face of Stafford who turned his head towards the blow at the last second. The brutal attack left the Cleveland player laying in a pool of blood from deep facial lacerations on the ice, and induced a siezure.
The game quickly turned into a slugfest as it saw ten fighting majors in the second and third periods, three instigator penalties, and the two goaltenders got tangled late in the third.
Hamilton police are investigating the incident, but they are quick to maintain that charges have not yet been placed. The Cleveland Barons have said that Stafford was released from hospital after suffering a third-grade concussion, a broken bone in his face, many missing teeth, and the reported siezure on the ice. It is expected that a very lengthy suspension will be levied on the Russian rookie.
TSN (:01 sec / 194kb)
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