Shawn Horcoff suspended 20 games for PED violation; takes 'full responsibility'

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ANAHEIM, CA - JANUARY 8: Shawn Horcoff #22 of the Anaheim Ducks handles the puck during the game against the St. Louis Blues on January 8, 2016 at Honda Center in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Debora Robinson/NHLI via Getty Images)

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ANAHEIM, CA - JANUARY 8: Shawn Horcoff #22 of the Anaheim Ducks handles the puck during the game against the St. Louis Blues on January 8, 2016 at Honda Center in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Debora Robinson/NHLI via Getty Images)

Anaheim Ducks forward Shawn Horcoff has been suspended 20 games without pay for violating the terms of the NHL/NHLPA’s Performance Enhancing Substances Program.

Horcoff will forfeit $357,526.88 of his salary for this year as part of the suspension. The 37-year-old Horcoff will be referred to the NHL/NHLPA Program for Substance Abuse and Behavioral Health for evaluation and potential treatment.

The Ducks signed the aging center in the offseason for one-year at $1.75 million. Horcoff accepted responsibility for violating the program, though did not explain the details of the substance. 

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“While recovering from an injury I suffered this past fall, I tried a treatment that I believed would help speed up the healing process. Although I was unaware that this treatment was not permitted under NHL rules, that is no excuse whatsoever," Horcoff said in a statement released by the NHLPA. "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 honored 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.”

Anaheim general manager Bob Murray released a statement on the matter, saying the team would support the program and Horcoff. 

“This morning we were made aware of the situation regarding Shawn Horcoff. The Anaheim Ducks organization 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.”

In May of 2014, former Buffalo Sabres forward Zenon Konopka was suspended 20 games for violation of the league’s Performance Enhancing Substances program. Konopka claimed the substance was a legal, ‘over-the-counter’ product, but one that was on the program’s banned list.

Former Toronto Maple Leafs forward Carter Ashton was suspended 20 games in Nov. 2014. He tested positive for, Clenbuterol, the same substance champion cyclist Alberto Contodor tested positive for. Ashton released a statement saying he used Clenbuterol as an asthma treatment.

In 2007 the NHL suspended then-New York Islanders defenseman Sean Hill for a PED violation. He did not dispute the claim.

A former Edmonton Oilers captain, Horcoff has played in 994 NHL games. He has 10 points in 45 games played this season with the Ducks while averaging 13:38 of ice-time per-contest. 

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Josh Cooper is an editor for Puck Daddy on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at puckdaddyblog@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

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