The WHL has suspended Pavel Novak for eight games

Rocket Novak gone for 8

The Kelowna Rockets will be without import rookie forward Pavel Novak for the next eight games.

The 17-year-old Czech was handed an eight-game suspension by the Western Hockey League for a checking-from-behind major and game misconduct he received during Monday's game in Kamloops.

The incident occurred late in the second period.

It's a heavy suspension for a player who had received only three minor penalties in 18 previous games.

The suspension in the longest handed out by the league this season.

Novak won't be eligible to return until Tuesday, Dec. 10 when the Rockets play in Brandon.

It's the second time in a week a Rocket has been suspended. Nolan Foote received a one-game suspension for a check to the head in a game last Friday against Medicine Hat.

At the time of the incident, Novak led all WHL rookies with 10 goals and 21 points.

The Rockets are not commenting on the suspension.

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