It’s widely known that Detroit defenseman Niklas Kronwall is one of the hardest hitters in the game. We’ve seen the Top 10 videos, memes, and highlights. While he hasn’t been severely penalized for his play, it caught up with him the time when the Red Wings need him the most.
The NHL announced today that after a hearing, he will be suspended for Game 7 Wednesday against Tampa Bay following his hit on Nikita Kucherov in Monday’s Game 6.
The league cited the reason for the suspension is due to “the significant head contact that resulted from Kronwall launching into it.” The league went on to say that a legal hit can include “unavoidable head contact,” but the Swede elevated “unacceptably” due to the face that he was airborne at the time of contact.
Detroit will try to win for the third time in Tampa this series without its top defenseman, as he’s been on the ice for a team-high 23:35 this season. The only statement from the Red Wings today came from GM Ken Holland, who said that he disagrees with the decision.
This series, Kronwall has two points and a minus-one rating.
You can view the NHL Department of Player Safety explanation below: