Blue Jackets defenseman Dalton Prout suspended one game for sucker-punch

The NHL Tuesday suspended Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Dalton Prout one game for a sucker-punch against Tampa Bay Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov.

The incident took place in Sunday's 4-0 Lightning win.

In the second period, Blue Jackets' captain Nick Foligno collided with Lightning goalie Ben Bishop, knocking him to the ground. A scrum ensued behind the goal, with Kucherov restraining Foligno. Prout then skated in and issued a blindside hit to Kucherov's head. In a video describing the suspension, NHL Player Safety labeled Prout's hit as a "punch to an unsuspecting opponent."

Kucherov left the game and did not return. Prout was assessed a two-minute minor for roughing and was given a game misconduct. Kucherov also received a two-minute roughing minor for grabbing Foligno.

The Blue Jackets said Prout will miss Thursday's game against the Detroit Red Wings in Columbus and is eligible to return Saturday at home against the New Jersey Devils.