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NHL Suspends O'Donnell For Five Games

Wednesday, 09.23.2009 / 7:11 PM / Los Angeles Kings | News
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NHL Suspends O\'Donnell For Five Games
San O'Donnell will miss the remainder of the pre-season and the first two games of the regular season.
Los Angeles Kings’ defenseman Sean O’Donnell has been suspended for the remainder of the Kings’ pre-season schedule and two regular season games as the result of a match penalty in a pre-season game against the New York Islanders, Sept. 22, the National Hockey League announced Tuesday.

Kings All-Time Suspensions | Video of the incident

At 16:37 of the second period, O’Donnell was assessed a match penalty for delivering a cross check to Matt Martin of the Islanders.

O’Donnell will miss the Kings remaining three pre-season games (tonight and Sept. 26 against Colorado and Sept. 27 at Anaheim) as well as the first two games of the Kings’ regular season schedule. He will be eligible to return Oct. 8 vs. Minnesota.

O'Donnell becomes the third King to be suspended since the start of the 2008-09 season, joining John Zeiler (boarding on 11/22/09, three games), and Denis Gauthier twice (blow to the head on 1/31/09, 5 games and Boarding on 2/19/09, two games).

ANALYSIS: The Kings currently have 11 d-men on their roster, which includes Peter Harrold, the Kings super utility fourth-line centerman/power-play defenseman/seventh blue liner and the Kings top six for the season appeared to be basically set:
O'Donnell/Drew Doughty
Jack Johnson/Rob Scuderi
Davis Drewiske/Matt Greene

Taking O'Donnell out of the equation for the first two games of the season, the Kings could have Harrold fill in, or could elevate a prospect of the four remaining on the roster:
Thomas Hickey
Alec Martinez
Andrew Campbell
Joe Piskula

Of those four prospects, Piskula is the only one with NHL experience, having played in five games in 2006-07. Hickey, of course, the Kings first-round pick (fourth overall) in 2007, has been having a fantastic pre-season, notching two assists and a plus-1 in three games, pushing for a spot on the Kings roster. But Hickey has only played in seven pro games, scoring 1-6=7 at Manchester last season. Martinez, the Kings fourth-round pick (95th overall) in 2007 out of Miami of Ohio University, played his first pro season a year ago at Manchester, scoring 8-15=23 and a minus-1 rating in 72 games. He has also played in three pre-season games, picking up an assist and a plus-3 rating. Campbell, the Kings third-round selection (74th overall) in 2008, also made his pro debut a year ago in Manchester, scoring 3-5=8 in 72 games wth a minus-15 rating. Campbell has seen action in two games this pre-season, going scoreless with 19 PIMs.