NHL suspends Ducks center Nate Thompson for three games

Ducks center Nate Thompson missed the season’s first 25 games after undergoing off-season shoulder surgery. He rejoined the lineup and recorded two assists in four games. Now he’ll be forced to sit out three more contests after the NHL banned him Monday for an illegal check.

Thompson was given a five-minute elbowing major and a game misconduct for a hit to the head of Justin Faulk of the Carolina Hurricanes during the first period of the Ducks’ 5-1 loss Friday at the Honda Center. Faulk was uninjured on the play and returned to the game.

Here’s the video explanation from the NHL: http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=60&id=900508&lang=en

“I’m disappointed,” said Thompson, who will be eligible to return to the lineup for the Ducks’ game Dec. 22 against the New York Rangers, the final contest on a four-game trip that begins Thursday in Buffalo. “I get it. I understand the league has a job to do to try to protect the players.

“It’s unfortunate I have to sit out three games, but the league has to make their call and it’s a job they have to do. … I’m not going to judge the call they made. It’s a call they have to make. … They made the call and I have to serve the time.”