Torres: I still feel like Stoll hit was clean


The San Jose Sharks emptied their lockers on Thursday and spoke with media the final time this season.

For one Shark, it was time to reiterate what he’s thought all along.

“I still feel like it was a clean hit,” Raffi Torres said of his check on Jarret Stoll, one that knocked both players out of the Western Conference semifinals. “I didn’t do anything that I don’t think I’ll do again.

“Obviously, it’s tough when he’s kind of in a vulnerable position, but I feel like I did my best to stay within the guidelines.”

Torres told David Pollak of the San Jose Mercury News he and Stoll talked face-to-face about the hit, and that Stoll said he didn’t see it as a dirty play.

That revelation comes just a few days after Stoll told the L.A. Times the hit “was a hockey play.”

The incident occurred in Game 1, and Torres was suspended for the duration of the series — meaning his suspension was a six-gamer.

He’s already said he’s not going to appeal the decision (under the terms of the new CBA, suspensions six games or longer can be appealed to a neutral arbitrator) and was grateful that San Jose stood up for him (GM Doug Wilson incurred a $100k fine for slamming the decision).

“It’s not going to be hard to make a decision to stay here,” Torres said. “They know I want to.”

Stoll: Torres hit was a ‘hockey play’

Torres hit

Jarret Stoll harbors no ill will towards Raffi Torres, or the hit that put him on the shelf.

Stoll, the Kings center that’s been out of action Game 1 of the L.A.-San Jose series, says the Torres hit was a “hockey play” — interesting, given that Torres was suspended for the remainder of the series because of it.

“It was a hockey play and a hit that did what it did,” Stoll told the LA Times on Sunday. “It’s over now.

“It’s a game. You play the game, there’s hitting and physical play involved. You take that chance.”

Stoll — who, it should be mentioned, is good friends with Torres and was in Torres’ wedding party — said it took a week to get rid of the headaches that plagued him after the hit, and noted that his former Oilers teammate reached out to him following the incident.

(He did not get into what was said, though.)

Stoll skated for the first time since the injury on Friday, and has done so since without setback.

“It’s fine. Obviously, I’m skating so there’s no setbacks,” he said. “I’m taking it slow. I’ve done this before, earlier on in my career, so I know how it feels and what’s right and what’s not, if I’m off or back to normal or not.

“So just day by day.”

Stoll’s comments will likely draw a lot of response, given not only the severity of Torres’ suspension but the equally severe punishment handed to Sharks GM Doug Wilson for challenging the ruling.

The Sharks were fined $100,000 by the league after Wilson called the Torres suspension “grossly unfair,” adding that the organization “strongly disagreed” with the decision.

NHL fines Sharks $100K for Torres suspension critique


The NHL fined the San Jose Sharks organization $100K after GM Doug Wilson called the Raffi Torres suspension “grossly unfair.”

(You can read the full Sharks’ statement here.)

The league explains that the Sharks received an automatic $25K fine for discussing the suspension within a 48-hour window, while the extra $75K stems from the “inappropriate nature of the comments.”

The press release related to the fine points to this rule about “prohibited communications.”

“… In addition to the foregoing, the League also has imposed a prohibition on Club employees and representatives communicating with the Department of Player Safety (or with the Commissioner in the case of an appeal of a decision) in order to attempt to influence its (or his) determination regarding whether or not to impose Supplemental Discipline.

Specifically, such communications are prohibited beginning with warm-up preceding a game, and continuing until forty-eight (48) hours after the later of: (i) the conclusion of such game, or (ii) in the event the Department of Player Safety holds a hearing, within forty-eight (48) hours following a disciplinary decision.

In the event of an appeal to the Commissioner, Club employees and representatives are also prohibited from discussing the merits of the Supplemental Discipline determination that is the subject of the appeal with the Commissioner or the Department of Player Safety until forty eight (48) hours after the Commissioner’s decision.

The foregoing prohibition extends to include formal team statements to the media and press releases issued during such period…”

Considering the games and money lost from the suspension, Torres’ hit on Jarret Stoll ranks as one of the costliest in recent history.

Read this post for the league’s explanation for the series-long suspension.

Related: Sharks will stay silent.

Don Cherry disagrees with Torres suspension

Stanley Cup Finals - Chicago Blackhawks v Philadelphia Flyers - Game Six

Don Cherry has voiced his opinion, this time on the Raffi Torres suspension.

Torres, the San Jose Sharks’ imposing forward, was suspended for the remainder of the Western Conference semifinal against the L.A. Kings, following his hit on Jarret Stoll in Game 1 of that best-of-seven series.

Torres, who has a rap sheet of incidents and supplemental discipline throughout his NHL career, has chosen not to appeal the suspension.

“I like Stoll [but] I don’t think he [Torres] should have got [as severe a suspension],” Cherry said in his Coach’s Corner segment during the Pittsburgh Penguins-Ottawa Senators Game 2 on Friday.

“If it hadn’t have been Raffi Torres, it would have been maybe a game.

“Twenty years ago, you would’ve got a medal for doing something like this.”

Torres won’t appeal suspension, Sharks call punishment ‘grossly unfair’


San Jose Sharks forward Raffi Torres won’t appeal the suspension banning him from the remainder of the Western Conference semifinals.

Torres’ decision was addressed through a terse statement by Sharks GM Doug Wilson:

We are proud of the work Raffi has put in to successfully adjust his game. Although it’s unfortunate that Jarret was injured on the play, we feel this decision is grossly unfair to the Raffi, his teammates and our fans.

However, Raffi does not want to be a distraction to his teammates and has decided not to appeal this suspension and we respect that decision.

Wilson added the organization “strongly disagreed” with the suspension decision.

The full statement is definitely worth reading, as Wilson provides a lengthy explanation as to why the club feels Torres should’ve escaped supplemental discipline, saying “it is abundantly clear that this was a clean hockey hit.”

Torres, 31, was suspended a minimum of three and maximum of six games for his hit on Los Angeles’ Jarret Stoll during Game 1 of the Sharks-Kings series.

Under terms of the CBA, players are able to appeal suspensions to commissioner Gary Bettman.

Suspensions of six games in length or more are to be handled by an independent arbitrator, as explained here by the Globe and Mail:

Procedurally under the new CBA, a player’s appeal first goes to the commissioner. Contrary to what has been widely reported, there is no a games limit on appeals to the commissioner.

Players have 48 hours to make that appeal in writing.

According to the CBA, the commissioner must “endeavor to hear all appeals on an expedited basis.” If the commissioner’s ruling is for six or more games, the player then has seven days to file an appeal with the neutral discipline arbitrator “who shall have full remedial authority in respect of the matter.”

Currently, as the two sides continue to hammer out the language of the new CBA, there is no neutral discipline arbitrator in place.

Last playoffs, Torres was suspended for 25 games for hitting Chicago’s Marian Hossa. He successfully appealed that decision and had his sentence reduced to 21 games.