Not all NHL players are created equal. Some players finesse their way onto rosters, and some play a shutdown brand of hockey, neutralizing opposition. In contrast, others must play with truculence to assure themselves of a roster spot. Wherever players land on the spectrum, penalties are an unavoidable part of the game. Inevitably, certain players accumulate more penalty minutes just by the nature of their role on their teams, but they all feel the same amount of shame, no matter who ends up in the box.
We’re tracking which players have the most PIMs across the NHL.
Who Leads the NHL in Penalty Minutes This Year?
Tampa Bay Lightning
Columbus Blue Jackets
Toronto Maple Leafs
New Jersey Devils
New York Islanders
There must be something in the water in St. Paul. For the second straight week, a Minnesota Wild player emerged out of nowhere to crack the top ten most penalized players. Matt Dumba accumulated 12 minutes over the past week, thanks mainly to a ten-minute misconduct assessed near the end of a 4-1 loss to the Dallas Stars. Jacob Middleton suffered the exact same fate in the next contest, bolstering his penalty minute total. With Mason Shaw’s showing last week and Marcus Foligno’s constant shenanigans, the Wild now have four of the 15 most penalized players in the league.
The Florida Panthers are giving the Wild a run for their money. The Panthers also have four players on the top 25 list. Matthew Tkachuk leads the quartet, but Brandon Montour made up a lot of ground over the past couple of weeks. The rearguard added 17 PIMs to his total this week, most of which came against the Montreal Canadiens. Montour threw fists with Brendan Gallagher, resulting in a fighting major and misconduct. That was the third straight game in which Montour had at least ten penalty minutes, shooting him to the top of the list. They are joined by Radko Gudas and Ryan Lomberg, who reside closer to the bottom of the list.
Lastly, Pat Maroon is fighting for his spot in the lineup. Literally. The Tampa Bay Lightning forward added another tilt to his 2022-23 resume, making him the seventh-most penalized player. Maroon had a go with Josh Brown on New Year’s Eve, his sixth fighting major of the season. Scoring has come less naturally for Big Rig as he plays a more truculent role with the Lightning. It’s another example of players doing what it takes to maintain their roster spot.
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