TORONTO – The Bruins won’t have to worry about the antics of Nazem Kadri for the rest of the first round series against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
The greasy Maple Leafs forward was suspended “for the rest of the playoff series against the Boston Bruins” by the NHL Department of Player Safety for his cross-check to the face of Jake DeBrusk in Boston’s 4-1 win in Game 2 on Saturday night. Kadri and DeBrusk were taking runs at each other for the balance of the chippy, rough playoff contest, but Kadri clearly lost control after watching DeBrusk check Patrick Marleau into the corner stanchion by the B’s bench.
The NHL Department of Player Safety made it clear in the accompanying video that they didn’t like what Kadri did away from the puck, and using his stick as a weapon aimed at the head of an opposing player: “This is not a hockey play. Instead this is a player retaliating against an opponent by using his stick as a weapon to make forceful and direct head contact. Players are simply not permitted to flagrantly violate league playing rules because they feel retribution is justified.”
The NHL Department of Player Safety also mentioned Kadri’s status as a repeat offender having been suspended a year ago in the playoffs, and that he’s also been suspended for a retaliatory cross-check to the head in the past having done something similar to Detroit’s Luke Glendening.
It marks the second straight postseason that the hot-headed Kadri has taken himself out of a playoff series against the Bruins after he was suspended for three games last spring for checking Tommy Wingels’ head into the boards. It also depletes Toronto’s center depth that was expected to be a big advantage for them in the first round playoff series, and leaves the Leafs without one of their best two-way players in a series where they could have really used him.
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