Maple Leafs Morgan Rielly To Be Suspended For Multiple Games After End of Game Ruckus

Toronto Maple Leaf fans won't be happy to lose top defenseman Morgan Rielly for multiple games, but some will still say it was worth it. 

The league has announced that Rielly is being called for an in-person hearing with NHL Player Safety after he took offense to the striking empty-net actions of Ottawa Senators forward Ridly Greig in Saturday night's game by cross-checking him in the head. This means that the NHL may suspend Rielly for six games or more. 

The incident occurred in the dying seconds, as Greig emphatically capped a breakaway on a Toronto open net by winding up and blasting a huge slap shot into the gaping twine from right in front of the crease. 

After Greig's vigorous empty-net capper in Ottawa's 5-3 victory over their bitter rivals from Toronto, Rielly rushed at the Senators forward and blasted him in the head with his stick with a big scrum ensuing. 

With the perception that current (and recent) versions of the Leafs are always lacking in emotion and perhaps taking losing in stride a bit too easily, the actions of Rielly stood out in stark contrast to the usual Leafs behavior. Unfortunately for them, it also stood out for the NHL, and now the Leafs will likely be without their longest-serving member and top-pairing blueliner for quite a few games. 

Everyone in the hockey world is weighing in on the Greig/Rielly affair, and opinions run the gamut. Former NHLer and vaunted tough guy Matthew Barnaby can see both sides:

"I absolutely LOVE what Greig did," wrote Barnaby on Twitter/X.  "I’m guessing we are going to hear about a CODE that exists? F**k that. Do whatever u want and piss off other team. Having said that I also LoVE what Reilly did but I probably would have just jumped him". 

No date/time has yet been announced for Rielly's hearing.