With first points still not on the board, but both teams having early opportunities, it was a right side raid which had young Eels' centre Will Penisini looking dangerous for the blue and gold.
He was ultimately stopped in a tackle by Taylan May, appearing to drop the ball and get up stumbling.
Play was stopped shortly afterwards with Penisini sent for a head injury assessment to ascertain whether he would be able to continue in the game.
Replays, however, showed May making direct contact with his arm to the jaw of Penisni as he went into the tackle, and once play had been stopped, referee Gerard Sutton and bunker official Adam Gee elected to place May in the sin bin for ten minutes.
Penisini would be able to return to the game after passing his concussion test.
May's place in the game was called into question during the week after he was found guilty in a Queensland court for assault occasioning actual bodily harm during the week. No conviction was recorded, and he was fined $1000, as well as being ordered to pay $1000 to the victim.
The NRL elected to defer a two-game suspension handed down to May until the opening two rounds of next year, with the young winger instead able to play in this year's finals series.
Being reduced to 12 didn't impact Penrith however, with the home side crossing for the opening try just minutes later. Winger Brian To'o would ultimately be the man to be first on the scoreboard following expansive play from the minor premiers.
Marata Niukore could also find himself in trouble for a dangerous cannonball style tackle just minutes after the opening points on Stephen Crichton, who seemed to be injured immediately, but was able to continue.
Niukore was placed on report for the tackle.
The score was six points to nil in favour of the Panthers approaching the 20-minute mark.