Canes' Skinner speaks on suspension

CorrespondentMarch 17, 2012 

Suspended Carolina forward Jeff Skinner was with the Hurricanes on their two-game road trip to Minnesota and Winnipeg. The league suspended him two games Friday for kicking a player with his blades.

“I knew there was a chance I would get something for it,” said Skinner, before the team’s game against the Wild. “It obviously doesn’t look good. From my standpoint, I’m just trying to push off. There’s no intent there. It is a dangerous play. I understand that.”

Skinner had been knocked into the boards and onto the ice and, with his skate blades, kicked at St. Louis Blues forward Scott Nichol.

Nichols was not injured on the play, nor was Skinner penalized at the time. His suspension also meant forfeiting $9,729.92.

“I’m just trying to push off. I get hit into the boards,” he said. “I’m sort of in a vulnerable position on the ice. My left leg is underneath me. The instinct is to sort of get out of there. … That’s all I’m trying to do. There’s no intent. I didn’t look back. I didn’t see who it was. But it was dangerous, I guess.”

Skinner acknowledged it can be frustrating at times, as a smaller, skill player, being pushed around by larger opponents.

“Yeah, but it’s part of the game,” he said. “You have to deal with that kind of thing. It’s something you battle through, and everyone deals with it. It’s something you learn as you go, and obviously I’m still learning. There’s better ways to handle it sometimes. It’s a good challenge, though.”

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