BUFFALO, N.Y. — Despite video evidence showing Lightning C Dominic Moore did not hit Rangers W Ruslan Fedotenko with a shoulder hit to the head Thursday, coach Guy Boucher said Moore's $2,500 fine was justified.
"I think it was the right thing to do," he said Saturday. "Sometimes you can avoid those contacts. … They just want to warn the player, I think."
Moore was fined for what league disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan called "an intentional interference that caused injury."
The incident, for which Moore received a roughing penalty, occurred early in the third period of New York's 4-3 overtime win. Moore said he was trying to gain position to be available for a shot when he pushed back into Fedotenko, who after about a minute on the ice had to be helped to the trainers room. Fedotenko did not play Saturday vs. the Flyers. It is unknown if he has a concussion.
"It's just one of those plays," Moore said Saturday. "You're competing for space, and he came to check me, and I tried to hold my ground."
Moore reiterated the hit was not retaliation for Fedotenko drilling him into the side boards earlier in the period. Rangers F Brian Boyle told reporters Moore said he would retaliate.
"No," Moore said. "I mean, I don't talk much on the ice."
He also said he did not know whom he hit: "I was paying attention to the play."
"I looked at the clip and it's not something you want to see," Boucher said. "But it wasn't something premeditated. He wasn't aiming for a head shot."
MALONE SITS: LW Ryan Malone (upper body) missed his seventh straight game. There was talk Malone might play against the Sabres, and Boucher said he was "good to go." But Boucher also said he wanted to be cautious and indicated Malone might not even play tonight in Pittsburgh. "We've lost him for so long," Boucher said. "If we wait three, four days to be 100 percent sure, we just might do that."
REALIGNMENT: RW Adam Hall and D Marc-Andre Bergeron were scratched for the second straight game to correct a mistake, Boucher said — his.
Because of injuries, neither player was part of a 6-0-1 run heading into Tuesday's game with the Kings. Both were in the lineup, though, when the Lightning lost to Los Angeles 3-1. So Thursday against the Rangers, Hall and Bergeron sat. "I wanted to come back to the lineup that hadn't lost (in regulation) for seven games," Boucher said.
Neither player did anything wrong. Hall is one of the team's top penalty killers and its top faceoff man. But as Boucher said, "You have to have chemistry, and you have to ride it. I made the mistake in one game of not riding it, and I made that mistake against L.A. Right now it's a lineup that fought together and created some stuff and had some chemistry, and I don't want to touch that right now."
MEDICAL MATTERS: D Matt Gilroy left the game in the second with an upper-body injury.
ODDS AND ENDS: C Steven Stamkos has a six-game points streak with five goals, six assists. …D Brendan Mikkelson played his 100th NHL game.