Vlasic: 'He's going to slash me, I'm going to defend myself'
Dany Heatley was injured in the immediate aftermath of the Sharks' 4-2 win over the Wild Wednesday. (CSN)
SAN JOSE – Sharks defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic was fined, but avoided suspension, for his slash of Minnesota’s Dany Heatley in the closing seconds of the Sharks’ 4-2 win over the Wild on Wednesday night at HP Pavilion.
Vlasic was fined $8,378.38, or one half of one day’s salary, for the slash. It’s the maximum fine allowed under the current Collective Bargaining Agreement for a first-time offender.
Heatley is out with an apparent shoulder injury, with no timeframe to return. He was hurt when Vlasic wrestled him to the ice, and not from the slash. Vlasic was issued a major for slashing and a game misconduct at the 20-minute mark of the third period.
Vlasic and Sharks general manager Doug Wilson had a phone hearing with the league on Thursday morning.
“The injury he incurred was not from the slash,” Vlasic said. “It was from the tussle after and when he fell to the ground. Their side acknowledged that and we acknowledged that, and it’s easy to see in the video. Obviously, if I injured him in the slash, it would be a lot higher.
“I never want to injure a guy, and I never want to see a guy injured, even if it was in a tussle in the end. Heater is a great player, I played with him, and it’s very unfortunate. But, the slash was not related to the injury at all.”
Vlasic and Heatley were teammates with the Sharks for two seasons, from 2009 through 2011.
“I have no history with Heater,” Vlasic said. “I played with him and he’s a great guy. … He’s a great guy and a great teammate.”