The NHL Department of Player Safety announced today that Rasmus Ristolainen has been suspended for three games after hitting Pittsburgh’s Jake Guentzel without the puck.
Buffalo’s Rasmus Ristolainen suspended three games for interference on Pittsburgh’s Jake Guentzel.— NHL Player Safety (@NHLPlayerSafety) March 23, 2017
Ristolainen hit Guentzel after a pass heading for the Pittsburgh forward was stolen by Zemgus Girgensons, which caused Guentzel to have his head twisted as he came through the neutral zone. He collided with Ristolainen and would leave the game following the hit.
While personally I think the hit was more of an unfortunate series of events on a bang-bang play, the fact that Guentzel left the game and that Risto (I believe unintentionally) hit him in the head has earned the Sabres best defenseman three games off, and a $90,000 fine.
With only eight games to go this season, Buffalo’s blue line now looks worse than ever. Give us your comments on the suspension below.
UPDATE: Here’s the explanation video from the Department of Player Safety.