NHL suspends Jordin Tootoo for 5 games

Nashville Predators forward Jordin Tootoo was suspended for five games by the NHL on Monday.

Nashville Predators forward Jordin Tootoo was suspended Monday for five games by the NHL.

Tootoo, 24, was punished for punching Stephane Robidas in the face during the third period of Saturday's 3-2 victory over the Dallas Stars.

Robidas stepped into the fray after Stars teammate Mike Modano was checked brusquely against the boards by Tootoo, only to be knocked unconscious by a roundhouse right.

Robidas was taken off the ice on a stretcher with a suspected concussion, and Tootoo was penalized four minutes for roughing.

"In reviewing this incident, Stephane Robidas appeared to be initiating a confrontation by approaching Jordin Tootoo," NHL disciplinarian Colin Campbell said in a statement.

"While a player is entitled to defend himself, Mr. Tootoo's forceful blow to Robidas's head was an overly aggressive and inappropriate response. The fact that Mr. Tootoo's actions resulted in an injury to his opponent also was a factor in this decision."

Tootoo, who will forfeit approximately $16,000 US in salary, has posted three goals and seven points with 104 penalty minutes in 61 games for the Predators this season.

The Churchill, Man., native has totalled 11 goals and 25 points with 296 penalty minutes in 165 NHL games since being drafted in the fourth round (98th overall) by Nashville in 2001.

With files from the Canadian Press