The NHL’s department of player safety gave Montreal forward Brandon Prust a two-game suspension for interfering with New York forward Derek Stepan in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals, the league announced in a statement Friday.
Although Prust was not penalized during the game, the safety department explained in a video that the "extreme lateness and the significant head contact that results from the way it is delivered" made the hit worthy of discipline. Stepan suffered a broken jaw and needed surgery as a result. Prust delivered the hit at 2:45 of the opening period.
Prust, who played for New York from 2010 to 2012, was suspended once before when he received one game after he elbowed New Jersey Devils defenseman Anton Volchenkov in the head during the 2012 Eastern Conference finals. The current ruling took into account the incident from two years ago.
Game 4 between the Canadiens and Rangers is Sunday at 8 p.m. ET in New York at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers lead the series 2-1.