Trevor Zegras wants to apologize to Matt Benning.
On Tuesday night, Zegras took a whack at Benning’s groin. Zegras got two minutes for slashing, but the San Jose Sharks defensemen was hot after the game.
“He’s miked up out there. Yapping a little bit,” Benning shared. “If he wants to play tough, I can play tough too. He went for a cheap shot. It is what it is.”
The NHL saw it from Benning’s perspective, fining Zegras $1,500 the next day.
For his part, Zegras addressed the incident this morning, and seemed genuinely contrite.
“I feel pretty bad about that. Obviously, I didn’t mean to catch him between the legs. When I watched the replay, it sucks, man. Hopefully, I get a chance to say something today,” the 21-year-old star acknowledged. “Definitely worth a fine. One of those things, you’re battling, you’re kind of going at each other all game, and just [got] my stick in a bad spot.”
We’ll see how the San Jose Sharks respond. Head coach David Quinn, who recruited Zegras for Boston University, called him a “world-class talent” and “great personality.”
Quinn, however, added that hockey as a sport polices itself, joking not joking, “The great thing about our game is everybody is held accountable.
“One of my good friends who was a baseball coach at Trinity in San Antonio asked me a long time ago, why do you think hockey players are the best guys? He grew up in Massachusetts. He knows all sorts of athletes, but he always thought the hockey guys were the best guys.
“I said, well, there may be something to the fact that if you’re a phony, or you’re an ass, you get punched in the face.
“There’s an accountability level in our sport that is unlike any other.
“I’m not condoning it. I’m not saying that’s how our society should handle any of those situations. But that is our sport.”
It’s worth noting that the San Jose Sharks bench boss said this before Ducks’ availability, so maybe Zegras’s contrition will go a long way.
“We were pretty much out there for most of the game together. I saw him almost every shift. He played played awesome, didn’t give me a ton. Just one of those things, in the heat of the moment,” Zegras said about the lead-up to the incident with Benning. “If I could go back and do it again, I definitely wouldn’t do that.”
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