Justin Abdelkader, Reto Berra

IIHF suspends Justin Abdelkader for one game at World Championship

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The IIHF decided to suspend Justin Abdelkader for one game at the 2014 World Hockey Championship for a knee-to-knee hit on Kazakhstan’s Konstantin Pushkaryovbegan.

Abdelkader (pictured on the left) won’t be able to play for the United States against Finland because of this bit of supplemental discipline.

Here’s a portion of the IIHF’s explanation for the suspension:

Based on all of the evidence presented, the Disciplinary Panel determined that Abdelkader had sufficient time to choose the manner in which he was going to check Pushkaryov and that at no point did Abdelkader make any attempt to play the puck. Pushkaryov turned to avoid the hit as he has a right to evade his opponent, so the responsibility lies with Abdelkader to take a different route to avoid the knee-to-knee contact

The Panel believes that Abdelkader’s actions were unintentional but his check caused a serious injury to Pushkaryov and for this he must be held accountable. Therefore the Panel determined that a one-game suspension would be appropriate.

The rugged Detroit Red Wings forward has two points and a -3 rating in five games during this tournament. The 27-year-old’s $1.8 million cap hit expires after the 2015-16 season.

Watch the Blackhawks’ Patrick Sharp tribute video

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Over the years, the Chicago Blackhawks have been forced to let some important players leave to keep their core together, which ultimately meant parting ways with Patrick Sharp.

The talented winger now wears a Dallas Stars jersey, so Blackhawks fans must face the reality of watching Sharp ply his trade for a formidable Central Division opponent.

Even if that might feel awkward, Blackhawks fans gave Sharp (and Johnny Oduya) a warm reception in Chicago on Thursday.

CSNChicago.com provides video of that ovation, which you can see in the clip above.

The Stars currently lead the Blackhawks 4-2, thanks in large part to Patrick … Eaves.

Wild must overcome Alex Ovechkin’s 14th career hat trick

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Death, taxes and Alex Ovechkin winning the Maurice Richard Trophy.

OK, the third thing on that list isn’t technically inevitable. It just feels that way lately in the NHL.

It’s unclear if the Washington Capitals can hold on against the Minnesota Wild, but we know for certain that Ovechkin already has a hat trick, the 14th of his high-scoring career.

This propels Ovechkin to the goals lead as of this writing, as he already has 34. As impressive as Patrick Kane has been, No. 8 is heating up, and may just edge No. 88 if Ovechkin can remain healthy.

One has to feel a little sympathy for the struggling Wild. They played well but lost against the Dallas Stars earlier this week and now must deal with Ovechkin and the just-as-hot Capitals.

Bylsma believes league will look at Gudas’ hit on Catenacci

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Rugged Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Radko Gudas may get in trouble with the league once again.

At least, it will be that way if Buffalo Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma has his way regarding Gudas’ five-minute charging major hit on Daniel Catenacci.

“I think there’s no question it’s head hit,” Bylsma said, according to the Buffalo News’ John Vogl. ” … I know the league will look at that hit and deal with it.”

As far as the injury portion of possible suspension considerations go:

Marcus Foligno‘s analysis of Gudas was … well just check it out.

The Flyers ended up winning 5-1. Gudas was a busy man overall, racking up 17 penalty minutes.

Fight video: Patrice Bergeron vs. Blake Wheeler (seriously)

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Regular Selke winner Patrice Bergeron can do it all on the ice, it seems. Apparently that means he’ll even drop the gloves.

That was the unlikely scene during Thursday’s Boston Bruins – Winnipeg Jets skirmish, as Bergeron fought fellow finesse forward Blake Wheeler.

Perhaps unusual feisty behavior was just in the air, as Tyler Myers squared off with Matt Beleskey.

(Not as unlikely, but still.)