This is not a prank. Nate Schmidt, he of the goofy grin and excellent knowledge of Taylor Swift lyrics, has been suspended 20 — yes, TWENTY — games for violating the terms of the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program.
We know. We can’t believe it either.
But before you go dragging his name through the Schmidt (<– see what we did there?), know that the Golden Knights are standing by their man:
We were notified that the NHL has suspended Nate Schmidt for violating the terms of the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program. While we respect the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program and are committed to its success, we strongly disagree with the suspension. We firmly believe that the presence of a trace of the banned substance was accidental and unintentional. Based on our conversations with Nate, analysis from independent medical experts and sworn testimony from the parties involved, we believe it is clear Nate was not able to reasonably ascertain how the substance entered his body.
Nate is an honest person with high moral character and great integrity. We will stand by him and support him during this time.” NHL.com
While normally we’d cheer about a formidable opponent being nullified before the season even starts (barring injuries, of course… we never cheer about those) this is not good for one of hockey’s most beloved characters. Here’s what he stands to lose:
Being his first violation of a performance enhancing substance, Schmidt will lose all of his NHL Salary from the effective date of suspension up until 10 days prior to its conclusion.
Then, during the final 10 days of the suspension, Schmidt will be paid 60% of his NHL Salary. pic.twitter.com/vWXfEhtsrL
— CapFriendly (@CapFriendly) September 2, 2018
As this is all breaking news, things continue to be in flux. We’ll keep you updated on our boy as we get new information! But just in case, everyone cross your fingers. And toes. And hell, it’s a Sunday, cross your eyes, too – it’s not like you have anything better to do.