Tag: suspension debates

Marian Hossa, Raffi Torres

Raffi Torres releases statement regarding suspension, might still appeal


The one guy we hadn’t heard from regarding Raffi Torres’ 25-game suspension for hitting Marian Hossa was Torres himself. This afternoon through the NHLPA, however, Torres did release a brief statement on his playoff-ending ban from hockey.

“My main concern is for the healthy recovery of Marian Hossa, and I hope that he will be able to get back on the ice to compete again soon. I sincerely regret injuring Marian. 

Regarding the severity of the suspension issued, I will take the next few days to decide whether or not to appeal the decision.”

Torres does have the right to appeal his suspension, but should he do that his appeal won’t be heard by the man who suspended him today, Brendan Shanahan, but instead by NHL commissioner Gary Bettman. The chances that Bettman would go against a ruling handed down by another member of the NHL offices would seem slim.

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On the ruling, Shanahan pointed out Torres broke three separate rules during his hit on Hossa, a play that went without a penalty called during the game.

Arron Asham receives a four-game suspension

Pittsburgh Penguins v New Jersey Devils

It took a curious amount of time, but the NHL rolled out suspensions for two controversial figures in the penalty-filled Game 3 between the Philadelphia Flyers and Pittsburgh Penguins. While star sniper James Neal will sit out Game 4, tough winger Arron Asham will miss the rest of the first round – no matter what. The league handed Asham a four-game suspension for a cross-check on Flyers youngster Brayden Schenn.

Here is the explanation video:

So, how do you feel? Is that punishment too light, just right or too harsh? Do tell.

Jonathan Toews isn’t happy with how suspensions have been handled

Jonathan Toews

We’ve heard from plenty of people who aren’t too happy with how Brendan Shanahan and the NHL have handled league discipline during the playoffs and now you can add Jonathan Toews’ name to the list.

Toews tells David Haugh of the Chicago Tribune that players are confused as to what is and isn’t dirty and which plays will lead to suspensions. The instance Toews focuses on most is Shea Weber’s wrestling-like move on Henrik Zetterberg.

“In a situation like that with Weber, more than anything you should make an example of it, regardless of whether he’s a star player,” said Toews, who missed 22 games due to a concussion. “They have been trying to make an example of things like that so they don’t happen again and all of a sudden you let one slide like that. Everyone must feel like they’re back to square one. So it is frustrating.”

Whether you believe they’re back to square one or if players feel like it’s open season to do as you will, daring the league to do something about it, that’s up for debate. This is a situation the league created for itself either way and upsetting the players during the league’s most important time of year doesn’t do anyone any favors.

You’ll have to wonder if Toews will feel the same way should his teammate, Andrew Shaw, wind up getting suspended for running into Coyotes goalie Mike Smith in Game 2.

Hunter thinks Backstrom’s cross-check “wasn’t that bad”

Dale Hunter

Longer-term history would indicate that Nicklas Backstrom won’t be suspended for a late cross-check that generated a match penalty in Game 3, although Craig Adams’ one-game suspension makes it a more interesting question. Washington Capitals coach Dale Hunter appears confident that he’ll have the talented Swede in the lineup, as he told media members such as Sky Kerstein.

Hunter said that he expects the league to review the situation – a requirement to avoid an automatic suspension – and for the NHL to rescind the match penalty. Hunter opined that “it wasn’t that bad.”

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Not too surprisingly, Boston Bruins coach Claude Julien was less-than-thrilled. Stephen Whyno reports that Julien claims this was “the third time in three games” that a Capitals player delivered a cross-check to a Bruins player’s face.

Whether Backstrom plays in Game 4 or not, it seems like there will be quite a bit more tension in the air in DC and then Boston as this series goes along.

Nicklas Backstrom’s late cross-check could bring suspension

Nicklas Backstrom

The Boston Bruins’ increasingly tense and remarkably tight 4-3 win against the Washington Capitals got awfully chippy as the game went along. One of the surprising parties involved in the violence was Capitals star Nicklas Backstrom, who might just be in line for a suspension for this:

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Mike Vogel has the details:

“In addition to match penalty, player shall be automatically suspended from further competition until Commissioner has ruled on the issue.”

There are a few interesting things to consider. The NHL likely has the right to rescind the penalty, thus stripping the automatic suspension from the situation. Of course, the league had a similar (in some ways) opportunity in regard to Craig Adams, who received a one-game suspension.

Will Adams’ suspension serve as a precedent-setter? Could Backstrom’s star status get him out of it? More importantly, do you think Backstrom deserves to get off the hook?

The Swedish center already has an overtime game-winner in this series, so this could be another big loss for Washington after they fell in Game 3.

More on the incident

Dale Hunter doesn’t think it is suspension-worthy.

Rich Peverley tells his side of the story.