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Canadiens forward Lapierre suspended four games for hit on Sharks' Nichol

TORONTO - Montreal Canadiens forward Maxim Lapierre has been suspended for four games, the NHL announced Friday.

The suspension stems from Lapierre's late hit on Sharks forward Scott Nichol in Montreal's 3-2 loss Thursday night in San Jose. Early in the third period, Nichol hit the post for San Jose before being driven to the boards by Lapierre. Nichol was down for a few moments before getting up and yelling at the officials and Lapierre, while holding his right shoulder.

Nichol did not return to the game and no penalty was assessed on the play.

Lapierre will forfeit US$14,248.72, with money going to the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund. He will be eligible to return March 13 against Boston.

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