VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — The Vancouver Canucks have granted forward Rick Rypien an indefinite leave of absence.
It’s the second time in three years the 26-year-old has left the team to deal with undisclosed personal matters. Earlier in the season, Rypien got a six-game suspension from the NHL after grabbing a fan on his way to the dressing room in Minnesota.
“Rick is a valued member of the organization and the club will continue to support Rick in every way possible,” the team said in a release.
Rypien has been a healthy scratch the last three games, and has one assist and 31 penalty minutes in nine games this season.
Rypien, the cousin of former NFL quarterback Mark Rypien, also took a extended unexplained personal leave after a rash of injuries two years ago, missing 70 games during the 2008-09 season.
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