Nazem Kadri suspended three games for hitting Niklas Backstrom
Toronto Maple Leafs center Nazem Kadri was given a three-game suspension Thursday for hitting Wild goalie Niklas Backstrom in the head.
In the first period of the Wild's 2-1, shootout win, Kadri was crashing the net when he bowled right into Backstrom. Brendan Shanahan said the league accepted Kadri's claim that it was unintentional but the fact remains that he should have been in more control -- by Kadri's own admission -- and he bowled right into Backstrom with force, hitting him square in the head. He wasn't pushed or steered into the goaltender.
Backstrom was down for a bit but he did stay in the game, only for a short time though. Not long after he was pulled from the game and replaced by Josh Harding.
With Kadri out three games, it puts the Leafs in a real bind at center for the next few games. They are already without Tyler Bozak and Dave Bolland because of injuries. Kadri being suspended makes a thin position look annorexic.
Kadri had another hit in the game, a hit high to Mikael Granlund that earned him a major penalty and a game misconduct. That hit was not deemed to be suspension-worthy, however.
Kadri will give up $44,615.37 in salary for the three-game suspension.
Our Latest Stories
A stunning final three minutes of regulation in Game 2 gave the hosts the title
The new Habs forward will miss three of the team's five remaining preseason games
Maple Leafs, Coyotes have a lot of prospects to keep a close eye on as camps progress
It may sound strange, but some of the toughest guys on the ice are the linesmen
It's only the preseason, but this save by Nathan Lieuwen might not be topped this year
The World Cup hosts are one win away from reclaiming the title