League suspends Ruutu for 2 games for elbow to Lapierre's head

TORONTO -- Ottawa Senators forward Jarkko Ruutu was suspended for two games without pay by the NHL on Wednesday for catching Montreal's Maxim Lapierre with an elbow.

Ruutu received a two-minute penalty for charging in the third period of the Canadiens' 4-0 win Tuesday night. He will forfeit almost $14,000 in salary and will sit out a home-and-home series against the New York Islanders.

"[We're] disappointed that it is two games, but obviously the NHL has set a very high standard for a hit like this, that I felt deflected off the shoulder to the head. Especially for a player with no history of suspensions, no history of even being called in front of the league," Senators general manager Bryan Murray said in a statement.

"But we do have to abide by what is called. And obviously going forward we know now that this is the standard for anybody that gets hit in the head area."

Ruutu will be eligible to return Nov. 17, when the Senators play the New York Rangers.

"Well obviously, it is what it is, and I have to live with it," Ruutu said in a release. "Like I said, I had no intention to do it, but accidents will happen and I'll have to deal with the consequences."

On Monday, the NHL suspended Canadiens forward Tom Kostopolous three games without pay for hitting Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Mike Van Ryn from behind during a game last weekend.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.