Brendan Perlini's OHL season has been a cavalcade of nightmares. First there was a rough training camp with the Arizona Coyotes, followed by a disappointing regular season. And now, when he finally seemed to hit his stride, he'll be sitting down again.
Perlini was suspended for three games after a violent cross-check to Barrie Colts defenseman Cameron Lizotte. Take a look here:
It's a little hard to see at full-speed, but Perlini (in red) takes a shot from the point and then immediately cross-checks Lizotte in the face/neck area after that. Perlini received a major penalty and a game misconduct for the play.
Obviously injuring other players - especially on an illegal play like this - is never acceptable. But the suspension comes as Perlini was having an excellent postseason, with six goals and three assists in 12 games. And with a 3-0 lead in the series over Barrie, Niagara is just one win away from playing for the right to go to the Memorial Cup.
Perlini's suspension likely means he will miss a game or two of the OHL finals. And with Christian Dvorak's London Knights pulverizing the Erie Otters, Niagara will need all the help they can get.
Although Perlini's season is not over, the suspension is yet another moment of frustration in what has been a very frustrating 2015-16 year for Arizona's 2014 first round selection. Hopefully Perlini is able to learn from this situation and avoid supplemental discipline in the future as he prepares to begin his professional career.