NEW YORK/TORONTO -- The National Hockey League Players' Association and National Hockey League announced today that Arbitrator Shyam Das has issued his decision with respect to the appeal of defenseman Vyacheslav Voynov's one-season suspension issued pursuant to Article 18-A of the NHL/NHLPA Collective Bargaining Agreement. Arbitrator Das upheld the Commissioner's determination that Voynov be suspended for the equivalent of one NHL season, but found that he is to be credited with having already served 41 games of such suspension during the 2018-19 regular season. Accordingly, the suspension will remain in effect until the mid-point of the 2019-20 regular season.
NHL statement on arbitrator's decision regarding Voynov suspension appeal:
"We have reviewed Arbitrator Das' opinion in the NHLPA's appeal of Vyacheslav Voynov's suspension for domestic assault, which upheld the Commissioner's imposition of a one-season (one-year) suspension for Voynov's off-ice conduct in October 2014. In his decision, Arbitrator Das confirmed that there was substantial evidence to support each of the Commissioner's material factual findings as well as the quantum of discipline imposed. Arbitrator Das described his decision to grant Mr. Voynov some 'credit for time served' for a portion of the 2018/19 season as being due to various 'highly unusual facts and circumstances [which] were not contemplated by the drafters of [the CBA] and do not easily fit into its procedures.' While we do not believe Mr. Voynov was entitled to any 'credit' for time missed during 2018/19 season, we accept Arbitrator Das' conclusion that the precise factual context here was unusual - including the fact Voynov has not played in the NHL since October 2014, and that he did not play professional hockey at all during the 2018/19 season.
"Taken in its totality, we are satisfied that Arbitrator Das' decision supports our strongly held views that the conduct engaged in by Mr. Voynov in this case was completely unacceptable and worthy of significant League-imposed discipline. The decision also confirms and reaffirms the Commissioner's broad authority under the CBA and applicable League Rules to establish -- and to enforce -- appropriate standards of conduct for individuals involved in the National Hockey League."
Los Angeles Kings statement on arbitrator's decision regarding Voynov suspension appeal:
"Today the NHL arbitrator rendered a final decision on further discipline to Slava Voynov. From our perspective, the player will not be playing for the Kings. We will now determine the impact of the arbitrator's decision on our rights to the player and consider our options going forward."