Tampa Bay Lightning forward Pat Maroon will sit out one game for unsportsmanlike conduct stemming from his actions Saturday night against the Florida Panthers, the NHL's Department of Player Safety announced Sunday.
Maroon will miss Monday's regular-season finale against the Panthers. Florida sits in second place in the Central Division with 77 points, while Tampa Bay occupies the third spot with 75. It will be the final contest before the playoffs for both clubs. The teams will meet in the postseason for the first time ever when the first round begins.
The 33-year-old had a hearing earlier Sunday for roughing Panthers defenseman Brandon Montour. The Lightning agitator broke free from a linesman's grasp to attack the Florida blue-liner during Saturday's game.
Late in the third period of a 5-1 Panthers victory, Maroon and Montour exchanged words before being separated by the officials. Maroon then skated away from the linesman, dropped his gloves, and went after Montour, hitting his face with his bare hand.
Both players received minor penalties and 10-minute misconducts for the incident. Montour was also fined $5,000 for spearing Maroon before the altercation began.
The NHL said Sunday it agreed with Maroon's argument that he didn't forcefully hit Montour, but the league cited "the totality of the circumstances that causes this play to rise to the level of supplemental discipline." The league also pointed to Rule 46.5, which states that any player who continues a fight or altercation after being ordered by the referee to stop is subject to "a misconduct or game misconduct penalty in addition to any penalties imposed."
Maroon was previously suspended two games while with the Edmonton Oilers for a hit on Los Angeles Kings rearguard Drew Doughty in January 2018.