We knew things might get a little messy over the next couple of days as the Predators get ready for Game 3 down 0-2 against the Phoenix Coyotes. I'm not sure we thought it would get this bad.
Nashville, Tenn. (May 1, 2012) - Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that forwards Alexander Radulov and Andrei Kostitsyn will not play Game Three of the team's Western Conference Semifinals series vs. the Phoenix Coyotes as result of violating team rules.
"The Nashville Predators have a few simple rules centered around doing the right things," Poile said. "We have always operated with a team-first mentality and philosophy. Violating team rules is not fair to our team and their teammates."
The Predators practice today at 11 a.m. CT at Centennial Sportsplex and play Game Three at Bridgestone Arena on Wednesday, May 2 at 8 p.m. CT.
More after the jump:
UPDATE AFTER THE JUMP:
UPDATE II (comments from Poile):
|2011 - Andrei Kostitsyn||72||16||20||36||-1||26||5||0||5||122|
|2011 - Alexander Radulov||9||3||4||7||3||4||0||0||0||21|
One would assume this has to be pretty serious to get this kind of punishment handed down. We all know Trotz doesn't hesitate to make guys watch a few games from the press box, but I can't ever remember productive guys like Radulov and Andrei being suspended like this.
Today the Preds rolled these lines in practice, which seemed hilarious at first, but are now much less funny:
S. Kostitsyn - Fisher - Erat
Bourque - Legwand - Hornqvist
Yip - Spaling - Smith
Halischuk - Gaustad - Tootoo
A. Kostitsyn - McGrattan - Radulov
So, any idea what kind of team rules could have been broken here?
A few reliable twitter sources have chimed in with their explanation for the suspension.
From a source on Predators' "suspensions" of Radulov, Kostitsyn for Game 3: Someone was off the Dry Island on Saturday night.— Greg Wyshynski (@wyshynski) May 1, 2012
Apparently, Radulov/A.Kostitsyn suspension is a curfew violation.— Elliotte Friedman (@FriedgeHNIC) May 1, 2012
Poile spoke to the media at practice.
David Poile just addressed the media re: AK46 and Radulov. Never heard a more disappointed tone from him.— Jim Diamond (@diamondhockey) May 1, 2012
It is a one game suspension, but it will be up to Trotz as to whether the two players will return in Game 4— Willy Daunic (@WillyD1025) May 1, 2012
Poile did not get into details of violation. Said It affected the focus, preparation of players. #Preds— John Glennon (@glennonsports) May 1, 2012
Poile also said he would have done it regardless of whether #Preds were up 2-0 or down 2-0. Had nothing to do with on ice performance.— Willy Daunic (@WillyD1025) May 1, 2012
And now a question for you readers: Can you ever remember a Predator being suspended for violation of team rules? I certainly can't.
Update III: Take this with a grain of salt, but....
Radulov and AKostitsyn were spotted in Scottsdale at 4am on the eve of Game 2. Suspended for Game 3 by club.— John Shannon (@JSportsnet) May 1, 2012