The National Hockey League has suspended Montreal forward Brandon Prust two games for his hit on New York’s Derek Stepan during Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final.
“Approaching laterally from the middle of the ice, Prust drives his left shoulder up and into Stepan’s chest and jaw, well after Stepan releases the puck and well after the time he is eligible to be checked,” the NHL’s Department of Player Safety explained. “What elevates this hit to merit supplemental discipline is its extreme lateness and the significant head contact that results from the way it is delivered.”
Here’s the video:
Further explaining the suspension, the Department of Player Safety noted that Stepan did suffer an injury on the play — a broken jaw — and that Prust had been suspended once before, for elbowing Devils defenseman Anton Volchenkov during the Eastern Conference Final two years ago.
Prust will now be ineligible to play in Games 4 and 5 of this series, able to return for Game 6.
Update: Interesting insight here from Fox Sports…
Just spoke with NHL’s Stephane Quintal, says he originally had 1 game for hit b/c late (.9 seconds), but 2 games including injury. #MTL
— Julie Stewart-Binks (@JSB_FOX) May 23, 2014