Flames' Letourneau-Leblond banned five games for hit

(Reuters) - Calgary Flames forward Pierre-Luc Letourneau-Leblond has been suspended five games, including the season opener, for delivering a hit from behind in a preseason game, the National Hockey League said on Thursday.

Letourneau-Leblond received a two-minute penalty for boarding and a 10-minute misconduct for his hit on Vancouver Canucks forward Matt Clackson late in the third period of Calgary's 4-3 loss on September 20.

The Flames forward, who is considered a repeat offender due to a one-game suspension he received in 2010, will miss his team's remaining four preseason games and the season opener on October 8 against the Pittsburgh Penguins,

"Letourneau-Leblond took a direct route toward Clackson, hit him squarely from behind into the boards and drove through the check high and hard," Brendan Shanahan, the NHL's Senior Vice President of Player Safety, said in a statement.

"Clackson's back was turned toward Letourneau-Leblond well before the contact, requiring that Letourneau-Leblond avoid or minimize the check. He did neither."

(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Steve Keating)