The NHL Department of Player Safety has announced that Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov will be suspended one game for high-sticking Vancouver Canucks defenseman Kyle Burroughs.
During the second period of the Capitals' 6-4 win over the Canucks on Monday night, Kuznetsov and Burroughs were battling in the corner when Kuznetsov swung his stick and hit Burroughs in the face. Kuznetsov At the time, Kuznetsov was called for high-sticking, but he finished the game.
In addition to the suspension, the NHL has fined Kuznetsov $42,162.16.
Kuznetsov will serve his suspension on Thursday night, when Washington goes on the road to play the Ottawa Senators. Through four games this season, Kuznetsov has recorded four assists.
This is a tough loss for the Capitals forward group because Kuznetsov has become one of the best distributors in the NHL, and he's formed a strong connection with Alex Ovechkin over the years. Dylan Strome and Lars Eller will be expected to pick up the slack down the middle in Kuznetsov's absence.
A first-round pick by the Capitals in the 2010 NHL Draft, Kuznetsov has flourished with the franchise. In his 10 seasons with Washington, Kuznetsov has recorded 153 goals and 347 assists. Currently, Kuznetsov ranks 10th on the Capitals all-time assists leaderboard, just six behind the legendary Peter Bondra.