Andrew Shaw faces NHL phone hearing for boarding Capitals player

Montreal Canadiens forward Andrew Shaw will have a telephone hearing with the league’s department of player safety Thursday after he knocked Washington defence prospect Connor Hobbs face-first into the end boards in Tuesday's pre-season game.

Canadiens' feisty forward hit Connor Hobbs face-first into boards in pre-season game

The NHL on Thursday suspended Canadiens forward Andrew Shaw, left, for three pre-season games after his hit against Washington defence prospect Connor Hobbs during the second period of Tuesday's game in Montreal. (Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press)

It was Andrew Shaw's hope upon being acquired by Montreal at the NHL draft in late June to earn the fans' love with his gritty style, but his actions Tuesday night are probably not what the Canadiens' faithful had in mind.

The former Chicago Blackhawks centre will have a telephone hearing with the league's department of player safety Thursday after he knocked Washington Capitals defence prospect Connor Hobbs face-first into the end boards during Tuesday night's pre-season game.

The 25-year-old Shaw was given 20 penalty minutes on the play and a game misconduct. The Washington bench was visibly irate as Shaw skated past Capitals players to the dressing room.

Before exiting, the Canadiens' newcomer dropped the gloves with forward Nathan Walker.

In last spring's Stanley Cup playoffs, Shaw was suspended one game and fined $5,000 US "for making use of a homophobic slur" directed at on-ice officials. He was also required to have sensitivity training.

Challenged by the salary cap, Chicago was unable to re-sign Shaw, a restricted free agent, prompting the deal with Montreal.

Three days after the trade, Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin signed the native of Belleville, Ont., to a six-year contract worth $23.4 million US that does not include a no-trade or no-move clause.

At the time, Bergevin told NHL.com he wanted players "who don't like to lose" and when they do it hurts and "it gets them inside. … "It's the Chicago culture, that's what we want."

What Bergevin and the Canadiens don't want, however, is Shaw missing games to suspension.

A two-time Stanley Cup champion with the Blackhawks, Shaw is expected to bring some physicality to a Montreal squad that has been one of the smallest in the NHL in recent years.

Last season, he posted 14 goals and 34 points in 78 games along with 69 penalty minutes and a plus-11 rating.

Shaw's style of play has been compared to new teammate and superpest Brendan Gallagher.

"I'm going to go out there and work hard and compete and get in people's faces as well," he told the Gazette in Montreal in August. "If [fans] like that style of game, I think I'll fit in quite well."


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