NHL fines Predators’ James Neal for diving

Nashville Predators' James Neal (18) scores a goal against the Mike Smith, left, as Coyotes' Connor Murphy (5) looks on. (Ross D. Franklin/AP)

Nashville Predators forward James Neal has been fined $2,000 for diving by the NHL Department of Player Safety on Wednesday.

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The fine is the first of its kind after the rule was modified in the summer by the NHL Board of Governors and the National Hockey League Players’ Association.

Neal was called for embellishment in the third period in Saturday night’s game against the San Jose Sharks. It was not the first time Neal has been noticed for diving – he received a warning after a Nov. 13 game against the St. Louis Blues.

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In 30 games this season, the 27-year-old has 19 points and a plus-10 rating.