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Breaking: NHL Handing Red Wings Rasmussen Two-Game Suspension

Rasmussen, Sundqvist both out for Detroit’s Satuirday home against the Minnesota Wild

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Michael Rasmussen, Detroit Red Wings
Red Wings Michael Rasmussen will sit out a two-game NHL suspension.

The Detroit Red Wings will be down two-thirds of their big line as they tangle with the Minnesota Wild on Saturday at Little Caesars Arena.

The NHL is handing center Michael Rasmussen a two-game suspension for high-sticking Boston Bruins forward David Krejci in Thursday’s 5-1 loss at Boston. Krejci did not return to action after the high stick and isn’t scheduled to play for Boston Friday against the Columbus Blue Jackets. Rasmussen was penalized on the play. It was among three infractions he incurred on the night.

“At first I didn’t think there was much to it,” Red Wings coach Derek Lalonde said of Rasmussen’s high stick. “Seeing it live, it was a follow-through. And then you watch it back in slow, slow, slow motion and you can see coming down on that head area, direct contact to the head.

“The league, and rightfully so, they’re trying to take care of plays like that.”

Rasmussen had a hearing on Friday with the NHL Department of Player Safety.

As he was checking Krejci into the boards, Rasmussen came around with his stick and struck Krejci forcefully in the head.

“It is important to note that this is not an off-balance player flailing to steady himself after a collision,” the NHL noted in its ruling. “Rather, Rasmussen’s use of the stick is reckless.”

The fact that Krejci wound up suffering an injury during the collision also was a factor in the suspension ruling. It’s the fine or suspension issued by the league to Rasmussen durng his 189-game NHL career.

Sundqvist Also Unlikely For Saturday

The Red Wings are expecting that winger Oskar Sundqvist, who skates alongside Rasmussen and rookie Elmer Soderblom on Detroit’s so-called Big Line, will also be unavailable for Saturday’s game. He’s already sat out one game with an undisclosed injury.

Sundqvist didn’t practice on Friday. “Sunny is day to day,” Lalonde said. “The fact he didn’t practice today, I would not expect him tomorrow.”

Lalonde was still uncertain as to whether the Red Wings would be recalling a player from the AHL Grand Rapids Griffins. Grand Rapids is currently in the midst of a Texas road trip.

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Lalonde could be opting to insert defenseman Jordan Oesterle and go with 11 forwards and seven defenseman. Oesterle is also capable of playing forward in needed.

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