Arbitrator upholds eight-game suspension for Nazem Kadri

May 19, 2021; Denver, Colorado, USA; St. Louis Blues defenseman Justin Faulk (72) falls to the ice after being hit in the third period by Colorado Avalanche center Nazem Kadri (91) in game two of the first round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Ball Arena. Kadri would be ejected from the game for an illegal hit to the head. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports

Colorado Avalanche forward Nazem Kadri’s eight-game suspension for an illegal check to the head of St. Louis Blues defenseman Justin Faulk has been upheld by independent arbitrator Shyam Das, the NHL and NHL Players Association announced Tuesday.

Kadri appealed his suspension to Das after his initial appeal to NHL commissioner Gary Bettman was unsuccessful on May 31.

Kadri has served six games of the suspension since his hit on Faulk in Game 2 of the first-round series on May 19. The initial suspension was announced two days later by the NHL Department of Player Safety, and the league’s players’ association filed the appeal on May 23.

Kadri is eligible to return to the ice for the Avalanche in a potential Game 7 of the second-round series versus the Vegas Golden Knights on Saturday. That series is tied at two wins apiece heading into Game 5 on Tuesday.

Should the Avalanche be eliminated in six games, Kadri will miss the team’s opening contest of the 2021-22 season.

Kadri, 30, posted 32 points (11 goals, 21 assists) in 56 games during the 2020-21 season and has 425 points (191 goals, 234 assists) in 668 career games with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Avalanche.

–Field Level Media