The IIHF have announced that Swiss captain Yannick Rathgeb will be suspended for the next two World Junior games after delivering a check to the head on Swedish forward Anton Blidh on Wednesday.

Rathgeb is the fourth offender to receive a suspension for a head-shot during the tournament, but the only one to get an extra game other than the one game ban that’s automatically applied for earning a game misconduct.

Midway through the game that already saw Rathgeb score a goal, the defenseman charged at a fast pace and knocked out Blidh, taking him out of the game. Rathgeb was given a game misconduct as a result, but just in time for Phil Baltisberger, who was injured from a hit to the head earlier in the tournament, to return to the lineup and give them six defensemen.

According to the IIHF, it was ruled that Rathgeb made eye contact with Blidh and kept looking at him before delivering his check, giving the impression that he knew what he was doing and could have stopped before the hit. Because of that, Rathgeb will miss the two next two relegation games against Germany, with a chance to return in the third and final game if it comes to that on January 5th.

Follow me on twitter, @StevenEllisNHL.

About The Author

Steven took a different route towards his hockey interests. Starting out as a big Habs fan, he started to gravitate towards the more obscure levels of hockey, such as the low level tournaments in Asia, strange club matches between teams most people in North America can’t pronounce, and even some 3am contests between Bulgaria and New Zealand. Aside from his love for strange hockey events, Steven occasionally acts as a mediocre ball hockey goalie following a failed attempt at making it to the NHL as a fourth line house league grinder. Beyond hockey, Steven is an avid racing fan and loves to chat about NASCAR, F1, Indycar, you name it. Oh, and don’t get him started on music. That is, unless you want the whole history of metal and a guitar lesson. Currently, Steven is a credentialed media member with the Mississauga Steelheads of the OHL, as well as with the Oakville Blades of the OJHL. Steven has also hosted the television show "The Hockey House" on TVCogeco in Ontario, as well as a segment under the same with on LeafsTV in Toronto. Home page: http://www.thehockeyhouse.net

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