BostonBruins.com -- Less than 90 minutes before the Boston Bruins contest with the Philadelphia Flyers, Head Coach Claude Julien informed the press that defenseman Andrew Ference had been suspended for his hit on Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh.
The NHL later indicated that Ference would serve three games.
“I mean you never want to see a player suspended, but at the same time there’s rules in place,” Julien said before Sunday’s 3 p.m. matinee.
“It’s a game that’s played on the edge. It’s a lot about what comes out of those kinds of hits – the injuries and everything else the league seems to be looking at – so you respect what the league is trying to do and move on.”
As McDonagh chased a loose puck with 3:50 left in overtime in Boston's 3-2 overtime loss to New York, Ference hit him into the boards, and was given a five-minute major for charging and a game misconduct.
The suspension is the first of Ference’s career.
“What’s pretty clear is Ference isn’t a dirty player,” Julien said. “Ference is one of those guys that supports what the league’s trying to do in regards to that.
"Not every time a player is suspended or those kinds of things happen, it’s meant intentionally.”
Without Ference in the lineup against the Flyers, defenseman Steve Kampfer will play for the first time since Dec. 14 against the Ottawa Senators.
Kampfer, who was sent down to Providence Friday morning to play in Friday night’s game against Worcester, was recalled Saturday morning before the Rangers game and joined the team for the flight to Philadelphia.
“Yeah he got a chance to play, and I don’t know if you want to call that good timing – a suspension is never good timing,” Julien said. “But for him absolutely, he needed to play and that doesn’t mean he’s gotten all the rust.
"But we need him today and he has to come up and help us out.”