Sources: Chris Neil not disciplined

Updated: April 22, 2012, 10:00 PM ET
By Mike Mazzeo and Katie Strang | ESPNNewYork.com

The NHL has not scheduled a hearing for Senators winger Chris Neil, and sources said Sunday that Neil will avoid discipline for his hit Saturday that left the Rangers' Brian Boyle with a concussion.

[+] EnlargeBrian Boyle
AP Photo/Bill KostrounOttawa's Chris Neil stands over the Rangers' Brian Boyle after checking him in the third period Saturday. Boyle suffered a concussion on the play.

A day after he called Neil's check "a dangerous, dangerous cheap hit," Rangers coach John Tortorella would not comment Sunday on the fact that the NHL has not scheduled a hearing.

Tortorella said he didn't know whether Boyle would make the trip to Ottawa for Game 6 on Monday night. The Senators lead the Rangers in the best-of-seven series, 3-2.

After dumping the puck in deep in the offensive zone in the final period of New York's 2-0 loss to Ottawa at Madison Square Garden, Boyle was immediately crushed by Neil and fell to the ice. Boyle got up and skated slowly back to the bench. He played three more shifts in the final frame before leaving the game.

Neil was not penalized on the play.

After the game, Tortorella compared Neil's hit with Phoenix Coyotes winger Raffi Torres' hit on Chicago Blackhawks star Marian Hossa, which landed Torres a 25-game suspension from the league.

"Well they have the blueprint," Tortorella said in his postgame news conference. "It's the exact same hit as Torres' -- a different part of the ice -- but he launches himself, head shot, (the) puck's at the goal line, and he's hit. So, the blueprint's there. I'm sure he's a repeat offender, too. Not much research to be done there."

The difference between Neil and Torres, though, is that Neil is not a repeat offender. Still, Boyle was significantly injured on the hit.

"The puck is on the goal line and it's the exact same hit," Tortorella said Saturday night.

In his defense of his hit after the game, Neil called it "clean."

"He cuts to the middle with his head down. I'm putting back pressure and trying to bust back and get in good position. I'm a physical player out there. I think it's a clean hit," he told reporters. "He was slow getting up, but I think I probably just knocked the wind out of him. He's a big man, so I think it takes a lot out of me delivering those hits."

The 27-year-old Boyle has scored three goals for the Rangers in the series.

Tortorella didn't address the team's lineup after Sunday's afternoon optional skate, but rookie left winger Carl Hagelin is likely to return after missing the last three games with a suspension.

Hagelin was suspended for injuring Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson with an elbow in Game 2.

Alfredsson hasn't played since, but he participated in Ottawa's optional skate on Sunday afternoon and is "hopeful" to play in Game 6, according to a tweet from the team's official handle.

Mike Mazzeo is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.

Katie Strang covers the Rangers, Islanders and Devils for ESPNNewYork.com. She is a graduate of Michigan State University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.
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