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Report: Phoenix Coyotes suspend Gilbert Brule after he refuses AHL assignment

Phoenix Coyotes goalie Thomas Greiss, right, blocks a shot by Anaheim Ducks right wing Teemu Selanne, top left, with the help of Gilbert Brule during the first period of an NHL hockey game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Dec. 28, 2013. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)

The Phoenix Coyotes sent center Gilbert Brule, along with right wing Jordan Szwarz, to their American Hockey League affiliate Sunday, but NBC Sports reports Brule refused the assignment and has been suspended.

Brule, 26, only saw three games with the Coyotes after being signed on Nov. 30. The former first round draft pick did well with the Portland Pirates earlier this season -- 12 points in 11 games -- but was not eager to return to the juniors.

The center spent three years each with the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Edmonton Oilers before coming to Phoenix in the 2011-12 season, in which he saw action in 33 games and posted 14 points. Since that time, he's had trouble keeping his NHL career afloat.

The Coyotes haven't given any word on the length of his suspension.

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