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.”