Nazem Kadri Suspended 3 Games for Boarding Bruins' Tommy Wingels

Alec Nathan@@AlecBNathanFeatured ColumnistApril 14, 2018

BOSTON, MA - APRIL 12: Nazem Kadri #43 of the Toronto Maple Leafs reacts after being called for boarding during the third period of Game One of the Eastern Conference First Round against the Boston Bruins during the 2018 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on April 12, 2018 in Boston, Massachusetts. The Bruins defeat the Leafs 5-1. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)
Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The NHL suspended Toronto Maple Leafs forward Nazem Kadri for three playoff games Friday after he boarded Boston Bruins forward Tommy Wingels in Boston's 5-1 Game 1 win Thursday evening. 

The infraction came midway through the third period with the Bruins up 4-1. Kadri was assessed a five-minute major and game misconduct. 

The NHL, in its player safety video, deemed the hit "forceful and illegal" and stated that it was "delivered on a defenseless opponent for the purpose of retribution and message-sending."

"I certainly wasn't trying to hit him while he was down like that. I was already committed to the hit. If he's still standing up, there isn't anything wrong on that, but he fell," Kadri said Thursday night, according to ESPN.com's Greg Wyshynski

"Initially I thought he just made contact with [Mitch Marner's] head to start and I didn't see a call there," Kadri added. "He was turning up the wall, so I was committed to the hit. He ended up falling. It happened pretty quick, and I think he was reaching for the puck. I don't think I stuck my leg out or my arm out, or whatever the case is, but it's in the hands of the NHL at this point."

Kadri, 27, tied a career high this season with 32 goals. The only Maple Leafs players with more were James van Riemsdyk (36) and Auston Matthews (34). 

Game 2 between the Bruins and Maple Leafs is scheduled for 8 p.m. ET Saturday night at TD Garden. 

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