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Maxim Lapierre suspended five games for hit on Dan Boyle

By Chris Peters | Hockey Writer

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The NHL Department of Player Safety has suspended St. Louis Blues forward Maxim Lapierre five games for his hit on San Jose Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle.

Lapierre had an in-person hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety Friday in New York, which allowed for a suspension of more than five games.

The department considers Lapierre's infraction boarding. The fact that Boyle, who left the game on a stretcher, was seriously injured on the play, as always was also taken into account.

Additonally, the fact that Boyle was in a vulnerable position was also considered by the department, but the fact that Boyle's numbers were visible to Lapierre for some time prior to contact put more onus on Lapierre to avoid or minimize the contact.

Though Lapierre is not considered a repeat offender in the eys of the collective bargaining agreement, he was suspended for a similar infraction in 2010, as Shanahan explained in the video.

A five-game suspension is a stong statement from the Department of Player Safety and could be bad news for Cody McLeod, who has been offered an in-person hearing for his hit on Niklas Kronwall, which had a similar end-result.

Shanahan and his disciplinary staff really haven't been messing around with punishments this year, with heavy-handed rulings of late. Checking from behind or boarding, as well as checks to the head seem to be squarely in Shanahan's cross-hairs and the rest of the league should be on notice.

 
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