NEW YORK (AP) -Maple Leafs forward Mark Bell was suspended for 15 games without pay Wednesday by the NHL after his plea last month of no contest to drunken driving and hit-and-run charges.
``Playing in the National Hockey League is a privilege, and with that privilege comes a corresponding responsibility for exemplary conduct off the ice as well as on it,'' commissioner Gary Bettman said.
Bell is in Stage 2 of the NHL's substance abuse program.
Toronto opens training camp Thursday.
Bell was arrested in September 2006 after his sedan rear-ended a pickup truck in Milpitas, Calif., in the San Jose foothills.
The Maple Leafs acquired Bell in June along with goaltender Vesa Toskala in a trade with the San Jose Sharks.
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