Avalanche's Valeri Nichushkin suspended at least six month

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Burst with Arrow

DETROIT -- The NHL announced on Monday—just hours before the Colorado Avalanche's  

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Burst with Arrow

playoff game against the Dallas Stars—that forward Valeri Nichushkin had been placed in Stage 3 of the player assistance program.  

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Burst with Arrow

The player aid program has decided to suspend Nichushkin for at least six months without pay  

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Burst with Arrow

In a joint statement, the NHL and the NHLPA said that once that happens, he will be able to request for reinstatement.  

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There was a lack of clarification over the admissions process for Nichushkin, who participated in morning skate with the team.  

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Burst with Arrow

After a long hiatus, forward Jonathan Drouin was re-inducted to the lineup for Colorado, who, with Nichushkin out, found themselves down 2-1 in the series against Dallas.   

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After sustaining a lower-body injury in the regular-season finale on April 18, Drouin missed all of Colorado's postseason games prior to Monday.  

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Burst with Arrow

After that, the Avalanche had a rough start in Game 4, losing 5-1 thanks to goals from Wyatt Johnston and the Stars.  

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Burst with Arrow

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