Here’s the explanation from the NHL Department of Player Safety on James Neal being suspended for five games.
Among the key points:
NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan says Neal has plenty of time to avoid Marchand.
“With a clear view of Marchand and plenty of time to avoid him, Neal skates directly through Marchand’s head with his left knee,” Shanahan said.
As pointed out in the video, what gets Neal in hot water here is how he looks directly down at Marchand and then turns his skates and extends his left leg into Marchand’s head.
“While looking down directly at Marchand, Neal turns his skates and extends his left leg, ensuring that contact is made with Marchand’s head,” Shanahan said.