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Published March 10 2011

Police open investigation of on-ice hit by Boston Bruins hockey player

QUEBEC CITY — Montreal police say they have started a criminal investigation into the on-ice hit by Boston's Zdeno Chara that left the Canadiens' Max Pacioretty with a severe concussion and cracked verterbra.

Police say Thursday they're acting on a request by Quebec's director of criminal and penal prosecutions. Police add that after evidence is collected it will be determined if there are grounds for prosecution.

The NHL said a day earlier it would not suspend Chara for Tuesday night's hit, when he slammed Pacioretty into a glass partition.

There has been strong debate this season over injuries from hits to the head. Pittsburgh star Sidney Crosby is among those sidelined with such an injury.