Ivan Barbashev of the St. Louis Blues will miss Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final after he was suspended for delivering an illegal check to the head of Boston Bruins forward Marcus Johansson Thursday night.
There was no penalty on the play and Johansson did not miss any time during the Blues’ 2-1 Game 5 victory.
“It’s physical hockey, it’s heavy hockey out there both ways, and they’re going to look at some stuff once in a while, so that’s the way it goes,” said Blues head coach Craig Berube.
Here’s how the NHL Department of Player Safety came to their conclusion:
As the video shows, Barbashev had time to change the angle of his hit so that he did not connect with Johansson’s head.
The Blues will miss Barbashev’s presence on the fourth line and penalty kill. Berube did not say on Friday who would take his place in the lineup. This could open the door for Robby Fabbri to re-enter the picture and go to the third line while Sammy Blais joins Sundqvist and Alex Steen.
“Somebody is going to have to step in and go do the job, a lot like Sundqvist with the suspension there,” said Berube. “Somebody will come in and do the job.”
Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final will take place Sunday, 8 p.m. ET on NBC (live stream here)
MORE BLUES – BRUINS COVERAGE:
• Both teams have seen officiating controversies even before Game 5.
• Blues hope to keep emotions in check.
• Cassidy rips officiating
• Missed opportunities haunt Bruins.