St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington admitted Tuesday that he threw a water bottle toward Colorado Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri after Game 3 of their Western Conference playoff series.
Binnington had suffered a lower-body injury in that May 21 game when Kadri and Blues defenseman Calle Rosen barreled into him while going for a loose puck in front of the net. Binnington was unable to return to the series, which the Blues lost to the Avalanche in six games.
Kadri was doing a postgame interview on TNT after Game 3 when he looked to his left and said, “I’m not sure if he just threw a water bottle at me or not.”
During the Blues’ end-of-season press availability, Binnington didn’t deny it.
“I went to get my knee checked out, midgame. I was coming back to the rink,” Binnington said. “The game just ended. Walking down the hallway, I couldn’t find a recycling bin on my way down the hallway. Right before I walked into the locker room, I see him kind of doing an interview there. Smiling, laughing there, and I’m there in a knee brace limping down the hallway.
“I just felt like it was a God-given opportunity. I don’t know, I could just stay silent and go in the room or I could say something and just have him look me in the eye and understand what’s going on. Something to think about. Yeah, I just threw the water bottle. An empty water bottle. It landed like 2 feet from him.”
Kadri was not disciplined by the league for the hit and Binnington said Tuesday that he didn’t feel Kadri intended to injure him.
Kadri, a Muslim of Lebanese descent, faced racist social media posts from St. Louis fans in the wake of the incident, leading local law enforcement to increase security following death threats. Kadri responded in Game 4 by scoring a hat trick on the Blues’ ice.
The NHL investigated the water bottle incident but has not punished Binnington for it.
–Field Level Media