Devils Draft Pick Patrice Cormier Suspended for ‘Dangerous’ Hit

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New Jersey Devils draft
choice Patrice Cormier was suspended Monday for the remainder of the
Quebec Major Junior Hockey League playoffs for a violent hit on an
opposing player.

Cormier, a 19-year-old forward the
Devils selected in the second round of the 2008 draft, was suspended by
the QMJHL for elbowing Mikael Tam, sending the Quebec defenseman into
convulsions.

QMJHL disciplinarian Raymond Bolduc
took more than a week investigating the Jan. 17 incident and called the
hit “dangerous and intolerable.”

The 18-year-old Tam spent two days in the hospital because of brain trauma.

Cormier, who was captain of the
Canadian world junior team, signed a three-year, entry-level contract
with the Devils last summer.

Cormier would not be allowed to play
for the Devils — or their AHL affiliate — until his team,
Rouyn-Noranda, is eliminated from the QMJHL playoffs. There was a
chance he could surface in a lower-tier professional league, but New
Jersey general manager Lou Lamoriello closed the door on that option.

“We will honor the league’s
suspension, have not considered, and will not explore other avenues for
his return this season,” Lamoriello said in a statement. “We are
pleased to hear Mikael Tam is doing well. Our thoughts are with him for
a full recovery.”

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