Brent Seabrook faces league hearing
ST. LOUIS -- The NHL Department of Player Safety will hold a phone hearing Sunday to determine whether there will be discipline for Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook, whose late-third-period hit to the head of Blues forward David Backes knocked the St. Louis captain out of Game 2 of the teams' Western Conference first-round playoff series.
Seabrook's right shoulder connected with Backes' head, and Backes was thrown into the boards late in the third. Backes remained on the ice for a short while after the hit and then had trouble standing once he got to his feet. He went to the dressing room and did not return.
Blues coach Ken Hitchcock provided little detail about Backes' status after the game.
"How do you think he is?" Hitchcock said. "Not great."
Seabrook received a five-minute major penalty for charging and a game misconduct at 15:09 of the third period. He had a goal, an assist and played 23:21 of ice time before leaving.
Seabrook said his intent was not to hit Backes as he did and expressed concern over the injury.
"I was just trying to make a play on Backes," Seabrook said. "I thought the puck was there. I was on [Alexander] Steen. I was just coming down the wall and I just tried to finish my hit.
"I feel bad seeing a guy like that on the ice. I've been there myself, and I'm not trying to target his head. I'm not trying to do anything like that. It doesn't feel good to see a player like that lying there like that, and knowing that I hit him. It wasn't my intent. I thought it was a hit. It's a physical series, hits have been laid like that from both sides the whole series, so we'll see what happens."
Seabrook wasn't sure if he would be suspended or would receive a fine.
"We'll see what happens," he said. "I mean, I don't know."
Neither coach would talk about the hit.
"I have no thoughts on the hit," Hitchcock said. "That's up to the league."
Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville had a similar response.
"I don't know," he said. "It's tough to say. I'm not commenting on the hit."
The Blues capitalized on the five-minute penalty given to Seabrook when forward Vladimir Tarasenko scored a power-play goal with 6.4 seconds remaining in the third period to tie the game and force overtime. The Blues won the game when Barret Jackman scored at 5:50 of the extra period.
The Blues lead the series 2-0 after previously picking up a triple-overtime win in Game 1 on Thursday. Game 3 is in Chicago on Monday night.