Golden Knights winger Ryan Reaves isn’t known for being much more than a big hitter.
And Sharks forward Evander Kane is reminding him of that after his latest on-ice incident.
Reaves was dealt a match penalty for his aggressive takedown of Ryan Graves after the whistle in Game 1 of the Golden Knights vs. Avalanche series. The play will be reviewed by the NHL, as all match penalties are, and Reaves is likely facing a suspension.
Ryan Reaves given a match penalty, not a misconduct, for his actions in this scrum in front of Colorado net. Cross-checks Grubauer in the back of the head and then throws down Graves. pic.twitter.com/y0h5LPgVH2
— NHL Safety Watch (@NHLSafetyWatch) May 31, 2021
Kane took to Twitter to discuss what Reaves’ penalty should be for his actions.
His suggestion? More ice time for the big-bodied forward.
Instead of a suspension they should have to play him 20 minutes a night for the rest of the series 😂
— Evander Kane (@evanderkane_9) May 31, 2021
That virtual sucker punch from Kane was a pretty strong one.
Reaves averaged only 9:56 of ice time per game and has just five total points (one goal, four assists) on the year. After potting nine goals in 2018-19 and eight goals in 2019-20, Reaves’ scoring touch has vanished, so he’s had to rely exclusively on his big-hitting ability (4.1 hits per game the last three seasons) to provide on-ice value for the Golden Knights.
But evidently, Kane’s comments indicate that he doesn’t think Reaves provides much value either way.
Reaves has previously been suspended by the NHL, so he figures to be slapped with a longer suspension for his hit this time since he’s a repeat offender. And Colorado wasn’t surprised that he went after one of their players at this early stage in the series with the Golden Knights losing big.
“Reaves, he’s on a mission to go out there and hurt someone in the third,” Avalanche captain Gabriel Landeskog said. “That’s what he does.”
But if the NHL comes down hard on him, Reaves may not do that any longer during the 2021 Stanley Cup playoffs.