Habs suspend S. Kostitsyn

MIKE ZEISBERGER, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 3:12 PM ET

CALEDON -- Sergei Kostitsyn has been suspended indefinitely by the Montreal Canadiens, general manager Bob Gainey announced Wednesday.

The Habs took action against the young forward when he failed to report to the team's American Hockey League affiliate in Hamilton after being reassigned earlier this week. Kostitsyn, according to many observers, was not in prime shape when he reported to training camp, a significant reason why he was sent down.

Gainey said Kostitsyn has asked for a trade, but quickly added that nothing is imminent.

"He didn't meet a performance level and therefore we still hold his rights to move him without waivers," Gainey said.

Andrei Kostitsyn, Sergei's brother, remains with the Habs and will be in the lineup tomorrow for the 2009 season opener against the Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

"It's tough for me that he left," Andrei Kostitsyn said. "But I want to focus on my season. I am happy in Montreal."

Sergei Kostitsyn is probably best remembered in Toronto because of his feud with fellow Belarusian Mikhail Grabovski, a Leaf forward.

After a pair of skirmishes between the two last season, Grabovski didn't mince his words concerning Sergei.

"I think he is not Belarussian now, he is French because I never fight with Belarussian guys," Grabovski said. "I don't know why he wants to fight with me. If he wants to fight, we'll go in the street and every minute of every day I'll wait for him and we'll fight."


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