Columbus Blue Jackets' defenseman Jack Johnson has been suspended three games for an illegal check to the head of Carolina Hurricanes forward Jiri Tlusty, the NHL Department of Player Safety announced on Wednesday.
Johnson was assessed a minor penalty for the hit during Tuesday's game. The suspension will cost him $70,276.50 in salary, with the money going to the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund. He will miss games against the Hurricanes, Tampa Bay Lightning and Washington Capitals.
Johnson has five assists in 12 games this season for Columbus and leads the team in playing time with nearly 24 minutes on the ice per game.
Center Ryan Johansen leads the Jackets with 14 points, and left wing Nick Foligno has a team-leading six goals.
The Blue Jackets have started the season 4-8-0 and are in last place in the Metropolitan Division. They play at the Hurricanes on Friday at 7 p.m.
- Andrew Melnick