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James Neal

NHL teams balance risk and reward with injured All-Stars

A one-game, slap-on-the-wrist suspension isn't enough to stop NHL teams from keeping their banged-up players out of All-Star weekend.

The league said Thursday that Chicago captain Jonathan Toews won't participate in All-Star festivities in Nashville after he left a game this week with an illness. That came one day after the Capitals' Alex Ovechkin pulled out of All-Star weekend with a lower-body injury that the team said had been bothering him since November.

Ovechkin and Toews by rule are suspended for the first game after the All-Star break, the same punishment the Pittsburgh Penguins accepted last year with Sidney Crosby. The NHL's rule was first used in 2009 against...