Brendan Shanahan’s 25-game suspension of Phoenix forward Raffi Torres represents one of the harshest punishments in NHL history.
Here’s a look at some of the other most notorious incidents (and suspensions) of the modern era:
Dec. 2007: Chris Simon stomps Jarkko Ruutu (30 games)
A repeat offender — he’d been suspended 25 games in March of 2007 for slashing Ryan Hollweg in the head — Simon was handed one of the stiffest penalties in league history.
“In addition, while the act itself was extremely dangerous, the fact that this is the eighth incident requiring the imposition of supplementary discipline on Simon compelled me to impose a very severe penalty in this case.
When a player repeatedly evidences the lack of ability to control his actions and conducts himself in total disregard of the rules, as well the health and safety of other players on the ice, each subsequent incident is deserving of enhanced scrutiny and more severe discipline.”
Oct. 2007: Jesse Boulerice cross-checks Ryan Kesler (25 games)
“You hope there’s a point where a player says: this is where I draw the line and I’m not going any farther.
“When they do go farther, they get a penalty. When they go farther than that, they get a suspension. When they take it to the point where Mr. Boulerice did, it’s well above a normal suspension.”
Feb 2000: Marty McSorley slash on Donald Brashear (remainder of season — 23 games)
This hit basically ended McSorley’s career, as he’d never play another NHL game after the Brashear incident. McSorley was later found guilty of assault and sentenced to 18 months probation in what was the first trial for an on-ice attack since Dino Ciccarelli in 1988.
Apr. 1993: Dale Hunter deliberate hit/injury on Pierre Turgeon (21 games)
In one of his first major rulings as commissioner, Gary Bettman handed down what was, at the time, the longest suspension in league history for an on-ice incident.
“Under my watch, this is the way I’m going to deal with these incidents,” Bettman said. “If this is not a deterrent, I’m going to find something that is. Everyone will be held accountable for their conduct.”
Mar. 2004: Todd Bertuzzi punches Steve Moore (remainder of season — 20 games)
Bertuzzi was suspended for the remainder of the regular season and playoffs and, because of the 2004-05 NHL lockout, banned from playing in any IIHF league as well. Moore’s career was essentially over after the hit; his civil suit against Bertuzzi is set to begin on Sept. 24, 2012.