Red Wings’ Michael Rasmussen suspended two games for high-sticking

Detroit News

Detroit — The Red Wings’ already thinning forward group is going to lose Michael Rasmussen for a little bit.

Rasmussen was suspended for two games, without pay, for high-sticking Bruins forward David Krejciduring Thursday’s game, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced.

The incident occurred at the 8-minute mark of the second period. Rasmussen was assessed a minor penalty for high-sticking.

Under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement and based on his average annual salary, Rasmussen will forfeit $15,783.78. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

Krejci left the game, didn’t return and was not in Boston’s lineup Friday against Columbus.

The Wings will likely recall a player from Grand Rapids in time for Saturday’s game against Minnesota. Coach Derek Lalonde seemed resigned to the fact, before the suspension came down, that Rasmussen would miss some games.

“At first I didn’t think there was much to it, seeing it live, maybe it was on the follow through. Then you watch it back and in slow, slow motion and you can see it coming down on that head area and direct contact to the head,” Lalonde said. “They’re trying to take care of plays like that. It doesn’t surprise me.

“He’ll (Rasmussen) have the approach of take what is given and move forward.”

Already without Tyler Bertuzzi (upper body), Jakub Vrana (NHL/NHLPA assistance program), Robby Fabbri (knee) and Oskar Sundqvist (day-to-day, upper body), not having Rasmussen will further test the Wings’ forward depth.

Lalonde is confident the Wings can handle it.

“You’re talking about five of your top forwards, that’s a handful,” Lalonde said. “With that said, you trust your depth and I believe we have a winnable lineup. You saw last night (Thursday) how competitive we were five-on-five against Boston. We can win this game (Saturday) and that’s a huge positive.

“I know this team went through the same type of injuries last year and had no chance (to win). That’s not the case this year. We’ll have a winnable lineup and the next person up from Grand Rapids will also be a reliable player.”

Twitter: @tkulfan

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