Flames’ Wideman suspended indefinitely, pending hearing

Watch as Calgary Flames defenceman Dennis Wideman runs over a referee after a taking a scary hit against the Nashville Predators. Dennis Wideman's 20-game suspension was upheld by the NHL after an appeal.

Calgary Flames defenceman Dennis Wideman has been suspended indefinitely, Sportsnet confirmed Thursday.

Wideman made contact with an official in the Flames’ 2-1 loss to the Nashville Predators Wednesday night.

Linesman Don Henderson had his back to Wideman as the Flames blue-liner made his way to the bench following a hit from Predators forward Miikka Salomaki. Wideman sent Henderson to the ice with a cross-checking motion.

Wideman will have a hearing following the NHL All-Star break.

The NHL rulebook lists three possible suspension scenarios stemming from abuse of officials.

40.2 Automatic Suspension – Category I - Any player who deliberately strikes an official and causes injury or who deliberately applies physical force in any manner against an official with intent to injure, or who in any manner attempts to injure an official shall be automatically suspended for not less than twenty (20) games. (For the purpose of the rule, “intent to injure” shall mean any physical force which a player knew or should have known could reasonably be expected to cause injury.)

40.3 Automatic Suspension – Category II - Any player who deliberately applies physical force to an official in any manner (excluding actions as set out in Category I), which physical force is applied without intent to injure, or who spits on an official, shall be automatically suspended for not less than ten (10) games.

40.4 Automatic Suspension – Category III - Any player who, by his actions, physically demeans an official or physically threatens an official by (but not limited to) throwing a stick or any other piece of equipment or object at or in the general direction of an official, shooting the puck at or in the general direction of an official, spitting at or in the general direction of an official, or who deliberately applies physical force to an official solely for the purpose of getting free of such an official during or immediately following an altercation shall be suspended for not less than three (3) games.

The 32-year-old defenceman said he apologized to Henderson following the incident and called the collision "completely unintentional."

Wideman has two goals and 19 points in 48 games this season.