Stanley Cup Final: Blues' Ivan Barbashev suspended for Game 6 after check to the head of Bruins' Marcus Johansson

St. Louis Blues forward Ivan Barbashev was not penalized for a high check on Boston Bruins forward Marcus Johansson in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final, but he'll miss Game 6 of the series because of the hit.

A pivotal piece of the Blues' fourth line with three goals in the Final, Barbashev went high on Johansson in the first period of Thursday night's 2-1 St. Louis win at TD Garden. And while he was not disciplined for the apparently illegal check during the game, an NHL Department of Player Safety review deemed the blow a "high, forceful hit that makes Johansson's head the main point of contact on a hit where such head contact was avoidable," with the league issuing a one-game suspension as a result.

Blues coach Craig Berube alluded to a potential suspension for Barbashev following the game, according to ESPN, saying "it's heavy hockey out there both ways, and they're going to look at some stuff once in a while." But St. Louis general manager Doug Armstrong has since called the one-game ban "excessive," while also telling the St. Louis Post-Dispatch he respects the officials' integrity.

Officiating has been a hot topic during the Final even outside of Barbashev's hit. Many Boston fans were irate over an uncalled tripping penalty during the Blues' game-winning goal in Game 5, even littering the Bruins' home ice in protest. And the Blues have now received two suspensions during the series, the first in a Final since 2011, after Oskar Sundqvist's Game 3 ban for boarding the Bruins' Matt Grzelcyk.

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