NHL suspends Ducks' Horcoff 20 games for PED use


Anaheim Ducks forward Shawn Horcoff has been suspended for 20 games by the NHL for violating the terms of the league's performance enhancing substances program.

Horcoff, who joined the Ducks this past offseason, says he fell foul of the rules because of a treatment he tried to aid his rehabilitation from an injury.

"While recovering from an injury I suffered this past fall, I tried a treatment that I believed would help speed up the healing process," Horcoff said in a statement. 

"Although I was unaware that this treatment was not permitted under NHL rules, that is no excuse whatsoever.

"I should have done my research and I should have checked with the NHL/NHLPA performance enhancing substances program's doctors. I accept full responsibility for my actions, and I am sorry.

"Throughout my entire career, I have felt genuinely blessed and honoured to play the great game of hockey, and I regret the impact that this may have on my team and our fans. I look forward to the day I return to the ice for the playoff push."

Ducks general manager Bob Murray said: "This morning, we were made aware of the situation regarding Shawn Horcoff. The Anaheim Ducks organisation fully supports the NHL/NHLPA performance enhancing substances program.

"We will also continue to support Shawn as a player and person throughout this process. We will have no further comment at this time."

Horcoff's lengthy ban is accompanied by mandatory referral to the NHL/NHLPA program for substance abuse and behavioural health for evaluation and possibly treatment.

Furthermore, he will forfeit $357,526.88 based on his average annual salary.

Before joining the Ducks, the 37-year-old Horcoff played the previous two seasons with the Dallas Stars. Prior to his stint in Dallas, Horcoff spent 12 seasons with the Edmonton Oilers, who drafted him 99th overall in the 1998 NHL Entry Draft.

He served as team captain for three of those campaigns and logged 447 of his 506 career points with the Oilers.

Horcoff, who is just six games short of reaching 1,000 over his 15-season NHL career, has only 10 points in 45 games this season.