Toronto Maple Leafs forward Nazem Kadri has been suspended three games for a dangerous hit to the head of the Boston Bruins’ Tommy Wingels, the NHL Department of Player Safety announced on Friday.
During the third period of the Bruins’ 5-1 win over the Leafs in Game 1 of their opening round playoff series, Kadri charged at Wingels and left his feet to deliver a check from behind and slam Wingels’ head into the boards.
Kadri received a five-minute match penalty and game misconduct on the play. Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy described the penalty as the “appropriate call” after the game.
When asked if he sees supplemental discipline in his future, Kadri attempted to explain what happened.
“I don’t think I can rap myself too, too much,” said Kadri. “Like I said, it’s out of my control at this point. I certainly wasn’t trying to hit him when he was down like that.
“I was already committed to the hit. I knew he was thrown off the half wall. Obviously, if he’s still standing up there’s nothing wrong with that. But he ended up falling and reaching for the puck, and I’m not sure what happened after that.”
Kadri has now been suspended for a total of 14 games in his nine-year career. This is the first time he’ll miss postseason action. It’s his first suspension since April 2016, when he got hit with a four-game ban for a cross-check on the Detroit Red Wings’ Luke Glendening.
The Bruins and Leafs square off in Game 2 on Saturday at 8:00pm. You can hear the game live on 98.5 The Sports Hub starting with pre-game coverage at 7:30.
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