Barbashev suspended for Game 6 for illegal hit to the head

St. Louis center Ivan Barbashev will have hearing for hit on Marcus Johansson

St. Louis center Ivan Barbashev will have hearing for hit on Marcus Johansson

St. Louis Blues forward Ivan Barbashev has been suspended for Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final after delivering an illegal check to the head of Boston's Marcus Johansson during Thursday's Game 5 victory.

Barbashev was not penalized on the play. Barbashev and the rest of the fourth line have played a key role in keeping Boston's top line, centered by Patrice Bergeron, in check this series.

In the league's explanation for suspending Barbashev, they emphasized that the head was the principal point of contact and that "such head contact was avoidable".

"A little bit, but it is what is", Johansson, who has a lengthy concussion history, said when asked if he was surprised that there was not a penalty call.

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"Those are the hits they want to get out of the game, correct?"

After the game, Johansson was pretty blunt in response to questions about the hit.

"No lingering effects that I'm aware of", coach Bruce Cassidy said Friday at Warrior Ice Arena. "I thought the officials were close enough to call it".

Ivan Barbashev #49 of the St Louis Blues in action against the Calgary Flames during an National Hockey League game at Scotiabank Saddledome on December 22, 2018 in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.

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