Team Canada's Joe Veleno suspended 5 games for stomping on opponent

The Red Wings forward will miss the rest of the World Championships despite not being penalized for the dangerous play.

RIGA, LATVIA - MAY 20: Joe Veleno of Canada controll the pucket during the 2023 IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship Finland - Latvia game between Canada and Switzerland at Arena Riga on May 20, 2023 in Riga, Latvia. (Photo by Pasi Suokko/Apollo Photo/DeFodi Images via Getty Images)

Detroit Red Wings and Team Canada forward Joe Veleno has been suspended five games by the IIHF after a dangerous play Saturday afternoon.

Veleno will miss the remainder of the World Championships.

With Canada and Switzerland meeting up in a toe-to-toe showdown of undefeated squads at the IIHF World Hockey Championship, Veleno appeared to stomp on the leg of Swiss forward Nino Niederreiter during a second-period board battle.

Veleno was not penalized on the play, however, Niederreiter would receive a two-minute minor for roughing after retaliating as the two exited the corner.

The 23-year-old has a history of supplemental discipline on the international stage, having previously been suspended during the 2019 World Juniors for a headbutt. Veleno has never been suspended in 152 career NHL games.

“It does not belong in our sport. You can't do it. It's too dangerous, the blades are extremely sharp,” Niederreiter said postgame to Swiss reporters. “He tried to go into the battle to hurt me and almost broke my ankle.”

The rest of the hockey world had nothing but condemnation for the potentially vicious play, including Edmonton Oilers forward Evander Kane, who dealt with a dangerous injury via a skate blade earlier this season.

Veleno has collected a pair of goals and three assists in five games for Canada during this year's World Championship. He also tallied nine goals and 20 points in 81 games with Detroit this season.

While Canada ultimately wound up with the man advantage following the sequence, it mattered little in the end as the Swiss moved to a perfect 5-0-0 on the tournament with a 3-2 win.

Buoyed by a 27-save effort by netminder Leonardo Genoni, the Swiss’ strong tournament has put them in a unique position to potentially capture their first medal since earning silver in 2018, and possibly the country's first-ever gold.