BUFFALO (AP) -Islanders defenseman Sean Hill was hit with a 20-game suspension by the NHL on Friday - just hours before New York faced elimination from the playoffs - for violating the league's performance-enhancing substances program.
Hill's ban began Friday night when the Islanders faced the Buffalo Sabres in Game 5 of the first round Eastern Conference playoff series. The earliest Hill could return to the lineup would be the Stanley Cup finals.
Islanders' spokesman Chris Botta said Hill did not travel with the team to the arena for Friday night's game. He said he did not know whether Hill had traveled back to Long Island.
New York started the day in a 3-1 hole to top-seeded Buffalo in the best-of-seven matchup.
The 37-year-old Hill signed a one-year deal worth $600,000 last summer and is eligible to be a free agent again in the upcoming offseason. If the Islanders don't play 20 playoff games this year, Hill's suspension will continue next season.
Hill had one goal and 24 assists in 81 games this season, his first with the Islanders.
He did not record a point in the Islanders' first four playoff games against Buffalo.
The 37-year-old from Duluth, Minn., was drafted by the Montreal Canadiens in the eighth round of the 1988 NHL entry draft. In 841 career regular-season games, Hill has recorded 60 goals and 229 assists for 289 points.
Advertisement
Advertisement

Top NHL Public Bets

NHL Top Stories

Thumbnail Crosby focused on resuscitating Pens Riding a nine-game winning streak, Washington is the hottest team in hockey right now. But will the league’s third-leading scorer throw a wrench into the Caps’...
Thumbnail Western Conference titans clash shortly John Gibson is acclimating quite nicely to his new role as the Ducks’ workhorse in net. Still, can the 23-year-old cool off the Blues tonight?
Thumbnail Elite netminders lock horns in Montreal Two of the NHL’s most explosive offenses are preparing to collide in Quebec. With Carey Price and Henrik Lundqvist on the scene, however, will stellar...
Thumbnail Note goalie wades into hostile territory So far, Jake Allen's first season as the Blues' undisputed No. 1 netminder has not gone according to plan. But can he reverse the...
Thumbnail Ovechkin targets another major milestone It’s always a treat to see Eastern Conference powerhouses Pittsburgh and Washington do battle. Tonight’s meeting in the nation’s capital, however, should have...
Advertisement

NHL Team Pages