Wings' Smith suspended for hit

MIKE ZEISBERGER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 1:23 PM ET

DETROIT - Brendan Smith claims he did not mean to hurt anyone.

And that’s exactly what he told the Blackhawks’ Ben Smith, the player he nailed in the head during a Chicago-Detroit preseason game on Wednesday night.

Brendan Smith, a blueline prospect for the Red Wings, was suspended for the remainder of the pre-season and five regular season games on Friday by NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan.

“I got in touch with (Ben Smith) and told him I would never intentionally try to hurt anyone,” Brendan Smith said on Friday afternoon.

As for the suspension, Brendan Smith thought “it was a little steep.

“Having said, you never want to see a guy hurt,” he added. “Obviously they are trying to cut down on head shots. I’m going to learn from this.”

Both Red Wings general manager Ken Holland and coach Mike Babcock agreed the punishment was a bit excessive. At the same time, Holland figured there would be some sort of suspension on the play.

In an interesting twist, Brendan Smith was assigned to the Wings’ AHL affiliate in Grand Rapids on Friday. Whenever he does get called back up to the NHL, he’ll have to sit out the next five games.

“(Ken Holland) and I talked about it,” Smith said. “He said they very much like me and have me in their future plans. So, you just have to go with it.”

mike.zeisberger@sunmedia.ca

twitter.com/zeisberger


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