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Kassian suspension now includes Friday's game vs. Sweden

The IIHF today gave Canadian forward and Sabres prospect Zack Kassian an additional game suspension for his hit Tuesday night on Czech Republic forward Petr Senkerik.

Kassian was by rule suspended for tonight's game against Norway after receiving a match penalty for a hit to the head but IIHF judge Dan Marouelli determined the hit warranted an additional game. That means Kassian will miss Friday's marquee showdown against Sweden.

"We all looked at the hit and thought it was a little bit cleaner than they portrayed but at the same time Zack's a big boy. When [he] hits someone, it's going to end up in a rough cause but we heard the other guy was OK and that's what mattered most," fellow Sabres prospect and Kassian linemate Marcus Foligno said after learning the news.

On did Kassian's past, last year's 20-game suspension by the OHL, play a role in the additional game:

"All I know is the IIHF comes down harder on head shots," Foligno said. "That's what I've learned in this tournament. ... Kassian's hit --- I don't really know what the difference was with some other head shots that they've had in earlier games. I know there were two head shots in the first game between Germany and Switzerland."

Below is audio of Foligno from this morning's pre-game session with the media at Team Canada's hotel. The Canadians canceled their morning skate before tonight's clash with Norway.

IIHF also announced Slovakia’s Marek Marincin will sit out a three-game suspension for his hit to the head and neck area on U.S.A. forward Jason Zucker with 7:51 left in the third period of Tuesday night's game. Slovakia’s Peter Hrasko was given two games for his hit to the head and neck area on American forward Jerry D’Amigo.

Marcus Foligno:

--Miguel Rodriguez

Audio: Canada's Kassian on hit, ejection

Team Canada's Zack Kassian, who was ejected with a five-minute match penalty for a hit to the head in today's Canada-Czech Republic matchup in HSBC Arena, addressed the play after the game:


Click here to download the audio and take it with you

Kassian, with his shoulder, hit Czech forward Petr Senkerik with 14:07 remaining in the second period of Canada's 7-2 victory. Senkerik dropped immediately to the ice, motionless and was wheeled off on a stretcher.

Senkerik remained in the Czech dressing room.

A few times zones away, Sabres coach Lindy Ruff said he saw "one quick replay" of the play and had no immediate comment.

Here is a link to TSN's video of the hit.

Video: World Juniors Come to Buffalo

The top young hockey players in the world come to Buffalo to compete in the 2011 IIHF World Junior Championship, which begins Dec. 26. Miguel Rodriguez and Mike Harrington break down the field of 10.

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