The offseason is already starting on the wrong foot for a veteran National Hockey League player... Arizona Coyotes forward Richard Panick was arrested in Scottsdale earlier this month.
Scottsdale police said the 27-year-old forward was arrested for trespassing. Panik reportedly refused to leave the entrance of Bevvy, a restaurant in Scottsdale, on April 8 at 8:50 p.m. He reportedly refused to leave the entrance of Bevvy in Old Town. According to police and sources, Panik appeared to be intoxicated during his contact with officers.
Panik was booked into Scottsdale City Jail for criminal trespass and later released with a criminal citation.
The veteran forward played 37 games during the 2017-2018 season with the Chicago Blackhawks before being traded with Laurent Dauphin to Arizona Coyotes for Adam Clendening and Anthony Duclair. He played 35 games with Arizona following the transaction.
The Arizona Coyotes released the following statement to ABC15:
“We are aware of the incident and are still gathering information as it pertains to the situation. We will have no further comment at the present time.”
Panik was selected in the second round, 52nd overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning during the 2009 NHL Entry draft. He took part in 75 games with the Bolts, before he was claimed off waivers by Toronto Maple Leafs from Tampa Bay. He spent most of the 2014-15 season with the Leafs, but ended up in the American Hockey League with the Toronto Marlies the following season, where he recorded nine goals and 25 points in 33 contests with the team. He was then traded to Chicago from the Maple Leafs for Jeremy Morin.
The Coyotes had a disappointing season despite many moves and transactions they had made throughout the course of the summer, and during the campaign. They tallied the third-worst record in the NHL at 29-41-12.
Panik still has a year left on his current deal, in which he will earn $2,8 millions next season. He is set to become an unrestricted free agent next summer, but this new twist in his career might have a monumental impact on what happens next...
In 335 career NHL games over six seasons with the Tampa Bay Lightning, Toronto Maple Leafs, Blackhawks and Coyotes, Panik has 61 goals and 65 assists.
More details to come...