NHL suspends Leafs' Jason Spezza 6 games for hit on Neal Pionk

·1 min read
After a lengthy hearing with the NHL, Leafs forward Jason Spezza has been suspended six games for his retaliatory hit on Jets defenceman Neal Pionk. (Getty)
After a lengthy hearing with the NHL, Leafs forward Jason Spezza has been suspended six games for his retaliatory hit on Jets defenceman Neal Pionk. (Getty)

The NHL's Department of Player Safety has handed Maple Leafs forward Jason Spezza a six-game suspension for his hit on Jets defenceman Neal Pionk . 

The hit occurred during the third period of Winnipeg's 6-3 victory over Toronto on Sunday Night, and was a retaliatory response from Spezza after Pionk laid a knee-on-knee hit to Maple Leafs' blueliner Rasmus Sandin.

Pionk was suspended two games for his actions, and was also placed into the NHL's concussion protocols as a result of Spezza's hit.

This marks the first time Spezza has been suspended in his 19-year, 1,203-game career. The versatile, veteran forward has moved up and down Toronto's the lineup all season, posting seven goals and 11 points in 26 games.

Spezza will be eligible to return on Dec. 19 when the Leafs travel to Seattle to face the Kraken.

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