April 28, 2015
TORONTO – The Toronto Marlies will be forced to make a lineup change for Game 3 against the Grand Rapids Griffins.
The American Hockey League announced on Tuesday that Marlies defenceman Viktor Loov has been handed a two-game suspension for an incident in Game 2.
Loov, 21, flattened Griffins forward Zach Nastasiuk in Sunday’s 5-2 win and was given a major and game misconduct for checking to the head on the play.
“Take that five-minute penalty — back in the day Scott Stevens was laying out those kind of hits left and right and they were great hockey hits,” Marlies head coach Gord Dineen said after Game 2. (But) that’s the type of game it is now a days, they’re protecting players.”
Nastasiuk left the game and did not return.
Loov, who dressed in 74 games this season, has never faced league discipline prior to this incident.
Toronto will have to replace Loov for Game’s 3 and 4 (if necessary).
Stuart Percy is the likely option, however it’s unclear how close he is to being 100 per cent after sitting out Game 2.
Prospect Rinat Valiev is another option that Dineen says he is confident to insert into the lineup, too.
“I wouldn’t count him out,” said Dineen. “He’s a strong option for us if needed.”
Game 3 goes Wednesday in Grand Rapids.