Vancouver Canucks forward Zack Kassian has been suspended three games by the National Hockey League for boarding Stars defenseman Brenden Dillon Thursday night in Dallas. This is Kassian's second suspension this season.
It's an awful hit and something that Kassian is gaining a rather bad reputation for, though his history of injurious hits dates back to his junior days. He was suspended eight games for a high-sticking incident in the preseason that left Oilers forward Sam Gagner with a broken jaw. That caused him to miss the first five regular-season games this year.
In this latest instance, Kassian gets tagged for delivering a hit from behind despite having more than enough time to either avoid the hit or minimize the contact. This wasn't one of those instances where Dillon turned at the last second. Kassian absolutely drilled him, too.
The Vancouver Canucks are not having a great time right now and there's a chance frustrations boiled over in the buildup to the hit, but it remains unacceptable for Kassian to have delivered such a blow.
Dillon was not injured on the play, which is likely why this is merely a three-game suspension. Based on the visual evidence, it seems light, but Kassian will deservedly sit for multiple games.