Zac Rinaldo

Rinaldo to have phone hearing for Ruhwedel hit


Flyers tough forward Zac Rinaldo will have to answer to the NHL for his hit on Sabres defenseman Chad Ruhwedel.

The NHL Department of Player Safety announced Rinaldo will have a hearing on Monday with Rinaldo for an illegal check to the head. It will be a phone hearing and that means the most he can be sat down for is five games. With the regular season winding down and playoffs on the horizon for the Flyers, a long enough suspension could eat into the postseason.

Rinaldo was assessed a match penalty for his high hit on the rookie Sabres defenseman and has a history. He was fined $5,000 on Feb. 4, 2012 for two separate incidents and then received a two-game suspension for charging nine days later. None of that will be considered by the league in his suspension, however, since it was over two years ago at this point.

Here’s video of the play from from last night in case you missed it.

Jason Demers tweets #FreeTorres, gets mocked

Los Angeles Kings v San Jose Sharks - Game One

Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.

We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.

It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”

Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)

Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.

So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”

… You get the idea.

The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.

The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.

Bruins list Chara on IR, for now

Zdeno Chara

Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.

It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.

The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.

As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.

Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?

The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.

This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.