NHL suspends Jets D Brenden Dillon for 3 games without pay

The NHL suspended Winnipeg Jets defenseman Brenden Dillon for three games without pay on Wednesday evening for an illegal check to the head of Pittsburgh Penguins forward Noel Acciari during Tuesday’s game.

Dillon, 33, had a hearing with the NHL Department of Player Safety on Wednesday. Based on his average annual salary, he will forfeit $60,937.50 under the terms of the collective bargaining agreement. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

Dillon received a match penalty after he used his shoulder to deliver a check to the head of Acciari at 4:15 of the second period in the Jets’ 3-0 loss to the Penguins on Tuesday. Acciari left the game with an upper-body injury.

“Obviously, our major concern is Noel. He’s doing OK, but he’s being evaluated right now,” Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan said after the game. “We’ll allow the league to go through their process, like they always do. We can all have opinions on it, but at the end of the day, our opinions don’t really matter. Our major concern is Noel and his health, and he seems to be doing OK.”

The Penguins scored a pair of power-play goals on Dillon’s penalty.

Dillon previously was suspended one game on Dec. 5, 2017, for slashing Washington Capitals defenseman Madison Bowey in a game.

Dillon has recorded 15 points (six goals, nine assists) and a plus-16 rating in 48 games this season.

He has totaled 191 points (35 goals, 156 assists) and a plus-62 rating in 863 career games with the Dallas Stars, San Jose Sharks, Capitals and Jets.