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Cizikas Suspended One Game, Penalties An Issue This Season



Casey Cizikas

After an in-person hearing with George Parros and NHL Player Safety on Saturday, New York Islanders forward Casey Cizikas has been suspended one game for boarding Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Brendan Smith Friday night.

Here’s the hit:

Casey Cizikas was given two minutes for boarding on the play. Although there was no intent to injure on the play, as Smith is turning away from the hit, the point of contact was the head area which is why he was suspended. 

The 31-year old forward also forfeits $12,500 to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund. 

Cizikas had never been suspended in his 11-year NHL career until this point. He will miss the New York Islanders contest against the St. Louis Blues on Saturday night. 

Entering this season, Casey Cizikas’ career-high in penalty minutes was 41, which he set back in 2019-20, in just 48 games played that season.

This season, Casey Cizikas has struggled to stay out of the box, taking uncharacteristic, undisciplined penalties. In 63 games played, Cizikas has taken 46 penalty minutes, which is a new career-high.

With his two penalties against the Carolina Hurricanes, Casey Cizikas is now tied for the team lead with Zdeno Chara as they both have taken 23 penalties this season.

The difference is that Chara has five major penalties for fighting, and all of Cizikas’skas’s trips to the penalty box have been for minors infractions. 

Since the All-Star break, 31 games, Cizikas has taken 34 PIM. 

That includes a four-penalty game against the Columbus Blue Jackets back on Mar. 10. Following the 6-0 win, head coach Barry Trotz stated, “That’s suspendable by me in my world. Casey is a really important part of our company. Obviously, guys have to step up and do a really good job.”

On the season, Cizikas has taken at least two or more penalties in six games this season, with four of the six coming in the second half of the season. 

Cizikas is one of the New York Islanders’ strongest penalty killers. While the short-handed unit has been dominant for the most part this season (84.6%, 4th best), Cizikas being in the box has added pressure to his teammates, given his role. 

Casey Cizikas will be able to play when the New York Islanders host the Pittsburgh Penguins on Tuesday night. 


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