Duncan Keith will face an NHL disciplinary hearing today for high-sticking Kings forward Jeff Carter in the face during Tuesday night's Game 3 loss, and could be suspended or fined. TSN and ESPN reported that the hearing will take place at 12:30 p.m. central time.
Keith swung his stick and his Carter in the face, briefly knocking Carter out of the game and drawing a double-minor penalty. Keith immediately tried to apologize to Carter before being ushered away by a ref -- and did apologize later in the period when Carter returned with a nasty gash on his face.
The stick swing was Keith's response to Carter's slash on Keith's unprotected hand as he reached down to pick up his glove off the ice.
"Obviously, I wanted to give him a tap, but not where it got him," Keith said. "I felt bad. Glad to see that he came back. ... It was just a little scuffle. It was an accident."
Hawks captain Jonathan Toews defended Keith.
"I don't think there was any intention to hit him in the face," Toews said. "I think he wanted to give him a whack back, obviously. ... Carter was instigating. It's an unfortunate incident. You never want to hit a guy in the face."
Keith has been suspended before. His elbow to Daniel Sedin's head on March 21, 2012 cost him five games. The NHL Department of Player Safety tends to dole out harsher penalties to repeat offenders. If Keith does get a suspension, Sheldon Brookbank -- who played 26 games this year but hasn't played since the season finale at St. Louis on April 27 -- would be his likely replacement for Game 4.