The National Hockey League suspended Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse one game for instigating a fight in the final five minutes of regulation in Edmonton’s 4-1 win over the Vegas Golden Knights on Wednesday.

Nurse received a minor for abetting, a major fighting and a 10-minute misconduct for abetting after a fight with Knights defenseman Nicolas Hague at 7:10 p.m. of the third period.

Nurse will be forced to sit out Game 5 in Las Vegas, with the best-of-seven series tied 2-2.

“I was surprised,” Nurse said of the sanctions. “You go through the entire sequence of events, and he asks you to fight several times, including several times before the puck dropped during the play sequence.

“It’s a fight that takes place between two people who I think were willing to fight. I didn’t go in there and jump him in any way. He took his gloves off first. I didn’t throw the first punch, I think.” he threw the first eight punches.”

CLOCK | The nurse begins to fight with Hague:

Nurse suspended 1 game for instigating fight in Game 4

The Oilers’ Darnell Nurse received a one-game suspension after instigating a fight against Gold Knights defenseman Nicolas Hague in game four.

Nurse added that Hague was looking for a fight.

“For 40 minutes, he was challenging and trying to pick a fight,” Nurse said. “For me, you play 24 minutes a game and you don’t want to go out at the wrong time.

“With 30 seconds to go in a 4-1 match, do it fairly, have [a] fair fight where both people want to fight and are willing to participate, I think that’s what happened last night.”

Edmonton head coach Jay Woodcroft was also fined US$10,000.

Meanwhile, Knights defenseman Alex Pietrangelo will have a hearing Thursday with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety for waiving Edmonton’s Leon Draisaitl in Game 4 of their Western Conference semifinal.

The 33-year-old blueliner received a major five-minute penalty for cutting and in-game misconduct. Draisaitl was on the ice for a few seconds, but did not appear to be seriously injured.

“That was a very, very dangerous cut,” Draisaitl said. “I think those are things that have nothing to do with hockey or the game. You can seriously hurt someone with a cut like that.”

“They’d like to see him checked out for sure and I’d like to see him suspended,” added Oilers captain Connor McDavid. “It’s as much intent to hurt as you can get. Time, the score clock, everything plays a factor.

“He comes over his own head and puts it right under Leon’s chin. You’d like to see something like that suspended, it’s not a hockey play, but at the end of the day it’s out of our hands.”

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