Flyers’ Radko Gudas to have telephone hearing over Czarnik hit

Radko Gudas is causing trouble once again in preseason, this time in a game against the Boston Bruins on Saturday with a high-looking hit along the boards on Boston Bruins prospect Austin Czarnik, knocking the kid out of the game.

Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Radko Gudas has once again come under fire for a dangerous hit after knocking Boston Bruins prospect Austin Czarnik out of Saturday’s pre-season game.

Gudas was given a minor penalty for boarding after driving Czarnik into the boards with a hard check that might have been late, less than a week after being ejected for boarding New York Rangers forward Jimmy Vesey.

The Czech defenceman escaped discipline for the Vesey hit, but the NHL department of player safety will be conducting a hearing on Monday over the hit on Czarnik and a suspension could be forthcoming.

Bruins coach Claude Julien was unhappy with the play and alluded to Gudas’ checkered history after Saturday’s game.

“We saw the shoulder to the head. Somehow he seems to have a knack of getting himself in trouble every game. I didn’t like the hit personally,” he said. “I thought it was a little bit late, and a shoulder to the head. It’s disappointing.”

Czarnik has been diagnosed with a concussion and will be out for seven to ten days.

Gudas has been suspended before, for a hit on Mika Zibanejad last December, but has otherwise escaped supplemental discipline.

Last February, Gudas managed to enrage the Montreal Canadiens, Buffalo Sabres, and New Jersey Devils in a span of two weeks.

First, the 26-year-old was given a five-minute major for clipping then-Canadiens winger Lucas Lessio.

“I don’t know the player personally but it seems like when you’re on the ice with him he’s the type of guy who will do stuff like that,” said P.K. Subban after the game.

Then on Feb. 11 he caught Sabres rookie Daniel Catenacci in the neutral zone with a vicious check, leading Marcus Foligno calling Gudas “an idiot” for his predatory play.

Five days later, Gudas was ejected after blindsiding Devils forward Bobby Farnham, who was nowhere near the puck. Again, the Czech defender escaped suspension.

Flyers general manager Ron Hextall and head coach Dave Hakstol have both spoken to Gudas about his reckless play in the past, to seemingly no avail.

When not getting himself caught in controversy, Gudas can be an effective defender. He was drafted 66th overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning in 2010 and has had positive possession statistics for much of his career.

He was one of just eight defencemen to score four points in a game last season, and he signed a four-year extension worth $13.4 million this June that should keep him in Philadelphia through 2019-20.

It’s up to Gudas now to ensure that much of his paycheque isn’t forfeited to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

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