Toronto Maple Leafs’ Kyle Clifford (73) returns to the bench following scoring during the second period of time of the team’s NHL hockey activity versus the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Feb. 18, 2020. Clifford was suspended one video game following a vicious hit just 7 minutes into Game 1 of the Leafs’ playoff-opening collection in opposition to Tampa. (Gene J. Puskar, Affiliated Press)

Approximated examine time: 2-3 minutes

Riding THE PINE — Most people loves playoff hockey.

Most people, that is, other than it’s possible professional hockey enforcer Kyle Clifford. Or perhaps he just enjoys it a small far too significantly.

The Toronto Maple Leafs ahead was assessed a 1-match suspension for a vicious hit he dished out just 7 minutes into Game 1 of the Leafs’ playoff debut in opposition to Tampa Bay.

Clifford was assessed a significant penalty for boarding and a video game misconduct when he sent Lightning forward Ross Colton deal with-very first into the glass — just moments soon after yet another massive (and in the long run legal) examine versus Tampa Bay defenseman Jan Rutta.

The NHL’s section of participant basic safety, which issued the suspension subsequent a listening to Tuesday that incorporated Clifford, described the incident as “a forceful strike to a defenseless participant who is no for a longer period in possession of the puck” in a movie rationalization.

Clifford was dinged with the penalty, but the Leafs quickly killed off the 5-moment power player in advance of heading on to roll to a 5- gain above the two-time defending Stanley Cup winner Lightning.

Now he’ll skip Wednesday’s Sport 2 in Toronto, as perfectly.

“(Clifford’s) obtained to toe the line. And that is not an effortless request for a participant like him,” Toronto mentor Sheldon Keefe advised the media Tuesday right before the suspension was declared. “When you happen to be him, you want to get on top rated of the opposition promptly, you want to finish your checks, you want to make your mark physically.

“He just concluded a great test (on Rutta), and the building’s kind of erupting. And then all of a unexpected, you will find a second verify there. It is a split-2nd determination, and it wasn’t a good a person for him. But he is familiar with that. … He is been all around the video game a prolonged time and has performed that way a long time. He compensated for it in that minute. We paid for it as a crew.”

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Sean Walker graduated from Syracuse College and returned to his household point out to perform for masking BYU, prep athletics and everything else his editors assign him to do. When he is not masking a recreation, he’s normally listening to Broadway soundtracks or mountaineering with his pet dog.

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