Torres’ Hit on Hossa: How does it live up to other big NHL Suspensions?

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Here is a video of Torres’ nasty shoulder hit on Hossa in the Coyotes vs. Blackhawks 4/17/12 playoff game . Torres got a 25 game suspension for this hit. Even though this is a injury-causing shoulder hit, 25 games is a long time. This ensures that Torres will not play until part of the way into next season (and he will definitely miss the rest of the playoffs this year).

I was left to wonder if I have ever seen such a long suspension in the NHL. I did some research and there were some (but not many) suspensions that were for 20+ games (only 5 in total that were for 25+ games). Needless to say, the video footage is hard to watch. I was surprised to see how much these suspension-causing penalties differed. Torres got in trouble for throwing his shoulder into an illegal hit, but some of these other suspensions were caused by punching, cross-checking, slashing to the face, and even an attack on a referee.

Check out the hit that ended Steve Moore’s career and got Todd Bertuzzi suspended from March 2004 until August 2005. 

30 games is the highest number of games a player has ever been suspended for. That record goes to Chris Simon of the NY Islanders for stomping on the leg of Jarkko Ruutu.  

Chris Simon also got a 25 game suspension for slashing Ryan Hollweg in the head. This might be the worst one to watch. Ouch. 

And lastly, the only player who was suspended from the NHL for life was Billy Coutu of the Boston Bruins in 1927. He started an all-out bench-clearing brawl in Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final when he attacked two of the referees (yes, tackling was involved). The NHL ban was dropped after a couple years, but Coutu never played again. Unfortunately for all of us hockey fans, there is no footage of this event (considering it was in 1927). And just to put that in perspective, that was 2 years before there were any rules about off-sides in the NHL.

Do you think the Torres suspension was fair? Should he have received 25 games? Now we just have to wait and hear if Torres is going to appeal his suspension.

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Penguins vs. Flyers, Game 3: Penalty Count Embarrassing

Not much to say about this other than it is embarrassing.

This wasn’t playoff hockey, it was a wrestling match.

Staged Fights, Should the NHLPA Allow It?

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Regardless of your stance on NHL fighting, this video is pretty shocking. I have a couple of quick points I would like to address regarding this multi-fight madness:

  1. There should be clear-cut line between fights to change the momentum of the game and staged fights to beat the living hell out of the other team (aka fights off the face-off). Isn’t player safety more important than a fight about starting lineups and angry coaches before the game has even started?
  2. If you are going to put a defenseman in the circle for the face-off, you are looking for trouble.
  3. Ryan Carter is quite the bleeder.
  4. Fights should not occur before anything in the game happens. Those coaches should be punished for that type of staged chaos. And Tortorella should be ashamed for yelling curses at DeBoer from the bench, real classy John.
  5. This is not the first time these two teams have gone at it within the first couple seconds of the hockey game. It has actually happened twice already in the past year (December 2011 and February 2012). Shouldn’t something be done to stop this trend?
  6. This kind of fighting is not ‘part of the game’. The NHL isn’t MMA fighting and there should not be mindless bashing-in of skulls without cause. Pierre Lebrun of ESPN said this about the fight: