The best-case officiating scenario in the Stanley Cup playoffs has the referees reserving their whistles strictly for egregious infractions that threaten a player’s safety or draws an unfair advantage for the offending team.
But due to the escalated intensity of a postseason game, that approach cannot be guaranteed. Rougher play and more kinetic emotion render the more intense players prone to penalty time, particularly when a competitive opponent is clicking and spinning their heads in the attacking zone.
The fact that there are four Northeast Division teams in the opening round, facing each other in two different matchups of Boston-Toronto and Montreal-Ottawa, is one way to give some individuals a “jump-start,” as it were.
Since there is no foolproof way to foretell whose team will reach the final round, it is impossible to project who will have the most swollen penalty-minute count in the 2013 playoffs. But at least in terms of the prime suspects to chalk up a notable number of penalty minutes per game played, here are five competitors to watch for.
Unless otherwise indicated, all statistics for this report were found via nhl.com.