A recently retired Willie Mitchell, who donned the "C" for the Florida Panthers for two seasons, took exception to it, empathizing both with young Connor McDavid and with players who had to put off family time in lieu of practice.
The decision to forego a day of rest was made following a 6-2 loss on home ice to the Buffalo Sabres on Sunday, and only, McDavid said, with the agreement of all the players.
"Obviously it had to be agreed upon by us (players), and we were all for it," the 19-year-old captain said Monday, according to Mark Spector of Sportsnet.
"It was a good thing. Everyone feels a lot better leaving the rink today, as opposed to coming in (Tuesday) still thinking about that (Buffalo) game."
The collective bargaining agreement between the NHL and its players mandates a certain number of off days per month, with exception. According to Section 16.5 (a), "The parties recognize that events may unfold such that the monthly schedule may need to be altered or modified to adjust for unforeseen and compelling circumstances.”
In Mitchell's eyes, an embarrassing loss in the third game of the season doesn't fit in those parameters.