The consequences for Shawn Thornton's disturbing assault on Brooks Orpik came down quickly on Saturday night, as the NHL Department of Player Safety confirmed he will have an in-person meeting to determine a suspension.
An in-person hearing allows the NHL to suspend a player for more than five games, and Thornton is suspended indefinitely until the hearing takes place.
Thornton was apologetic for his actions after the game, telling reporters, "I made a mistake."
It was not my intention, I feel awful. I felt sick all game.
It's always my job to defend my teammates but I've prided myself for a long time to stay within the lines. It is hard to talk about right now. I can't say I am sorry enough. I am sure I will be criticized for saying it, but it is true. I hope he's doing alright.
Neal, on the other hand, defended his actions to reporters after the game. He insisted his kneeing incident was unintentional.
Neal: "I need to be more careful and I guess get my knee out of the way, but I'm not trying to hit him in the head or injure him"— Ken Laird (@Ken_Laird) December 8, 2013
Either way, expect the NHL to come down hard on both players.