The KHL was forced to hand out an eight-game suspension toAk-Bars Kazan defenseman Stepan Zakharchuk for his hit to the head of Magnitogorsk defenseman Alexander Budkin.
The league released a statement on the hit:
In the 31st minute of the match between Metallurg Magnitogorsk and Ak Bars Kazan, visiting defenseman Stepan Zakharchuk was sent to the locker room after being called for charging. After reviewing the incident, the KHL Disciplinary Committee ruled that the foul was one of injuring an opponent by checking to the head and neck area. As a result, the major plus game misconduct penalty (5+20 minutes) remains in force, but Zakharchuk has also been fined and suspended for eight games.
Check out the video of the hit:
There’s no doubt about it, Zakharchuk is going for the head the whole way. Things happen fast on the ice, but that just looked like a player attempting to injure an opponent.
TSN hockey insider Darren Dreger sees it the same way:
(h/t: Yahoo! Sports)