NHL

Sharks' Torres suspended for series

Share This Story

   
 

NEW YORK (AP)

Sharks forward Raffi Torres was suspended for the rest of San Jose's second-round playoff series against Los Angeles on Thursday for an illegal check to the head of Kings forward Jarret Stoll during the opener.

The NHL announced the suspension a few hours before the Kings hosted the Sharks in Game 2. Stoll wasn't expected to play for the defending Stanley Cup champions.

Stoll didn't return to Game 1 after Torres hit him late in the second period of the Kings' 2-0 victory. Torres got only a minor penalty for charging on the hit, and coach Todd McLellan and captain Joe Thornton echoed Torres' belief that the hit was completely legal.

The NHL's Department of Player Safety sharply disagreed while handing down a fourth suspension for Torres, considered a repeat offender in dangerous hits under the league's collective bargaining agreement. Torres flew to New York for an in-person hearing Thursday.

While playing for Phoenix last season, Torres received a 21-game suspension - initially 25 games - for a high hit on Chicago star Marian Hossa in the first round of the playoffs. Torres was suspended for two games in January 2012 for charging Minnesota defenseman Nate Prosser, and he sat out four games in April 2011 for a hit to the head of Edmonton's Jordan Eberle while playing for Vancouver.

Stoll was bent forward while trying to play a bouncing puck when Torres approached him from the side for a violent hit. Stoll's head snapped back violently before he fell forward onto the ice.

In an explanatory video released by Brendan Shanahan, the NHL's senior vice president of player safety, he said Stoll's head was ''the principal point of contact'' in the hit, creating grounds for suspension. Although Torres initially made contact with Stoll's right shoulder, Shanahan ruled that the shoulder hit was only a glancing blow, as evidenced by the direction both players traveled after the contact.

Torres claimed he had changed his ways during a largely incident-free season with Phoenix and San Jose, his sixth team in six seasons. He has been a dependable depth forward this season for the Sharks and Coyotes, scoring 18 points with just 17 penalty minutes in 39 games.

The Kings lose much more in the absence of Stoll, their veteran third-line center. Stoll is a faceoff specialist and a top penalty-killer with a strong two-way game.

Brad Richardson, who played 13 playoff games during the Kings' championship run last year, is expected to take Stoll's spot in the lineup.

Los Angeles hasn't disclosed the nature of Stoll's injury or a timetable for his recovery.

Torres, Thornton and McLellan all claimed the hit was completely legal, while Kings coach Darryl Sutter called it ''careless.'' Torres and Stoll are friends after three seasons as teammates in Edmonton from 2005-08.

''We were kind of shocked to hear he has to fly to New York for the hearing, because we didn't see anything wrong on the play,'' Thornton said Wednesday. ''It's unfortunate that Raffi has to go through this again.''

McLellan prepared for Torres' likely absence by moving Joe Pavelski onto the Sharks' second line on the left wing with Logan Couture and Patrick Marleau. Scott Gomez moved into Pavelski's spot on the third line, and Tim Kennedy is likely to suit up on the fourth line.

Tagged: Joe Thornton, Jarret Stoll, Joe Pavelski, Kings, Sharks, Raffi Torres

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



Play Hockey Simulation Game on WhatIfSports

NHL Videos

Toews, Kane: Easy decision to resign with Blackhawks Posted: Jul 17, 2014
Jonathan Toews and Patrick Kane say their decision to sign matching 8-year, $84M...

LA mayor 'F-bombs' Kings rally Posted: Jun 17, 2014
Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti toasts the Stanley Cup champion Kings in front o...

Kings, fans celebrate Stanley Cup Posted: Jun 16, 2014
Kings players celebrate winning the Stanley Cup with a parade through downtown L...

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Reebok Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh Penguins Premier Hockey Jersey - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Pittsburgh_Penguins/browse/featuredproduct/175178/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_175000/FF_175178_xl.jpg&w=100 159.95 Reebok Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh Penguins Premier Hockey Jersey - Black
    Reebok Dallas Stars White Premier Hockey Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Dallas_Stars/browse/featuredproduct/243363/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_243000/FF_243363_xl.jpg&w=100 124.95 Reebok Dallas Stars White Premier Hockey Jersey
    Reebok Tampa Bay Lightning Primary Logo T-Shirt - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Tampa_Bay_Lightning/browse/featuredproduct/301017/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_301000/ff_301017_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 Reebok Tampa Bay Lightning Primary Logo T-Shirt - Royal Blue
    Majestic Anaheim Ducks Black Official Logo Full Zip Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Anaheim_Ducks/browse/featuredproduct/398322/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_398000/FF_398322_xl.jpg&w=100 43.99 Majestic Anaheim Ducks Black Official Logo Full Zip Hoodie Sweatshirt
    Detroit Red Wings Youth Black Southpaw Backpack http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Detroit_Red_Wings/browse/featuredproduct/403205/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_403000/FF_403205_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Detroit Red Wings Youth Black Southpaw Backpack
    Reebok Chicago Blackhawks #88 Patrick Kane Red Premier Hockey Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Chicago_Blackhawks/browse/featuredproduct/408123/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_408000/FF_408123_xl.jpg&w=100 159.95 Reebok Chicago Blackhawks #88 Patrick Kane Red Premier Hockey Jersey
    Majestic New Jersey Devils Red Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_Jersey_Devils/browse/featuredproduct/456774/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_456000/ff_456774_xl.jpg&w=100 47.99 Majestic New Jersey Devils Red Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt
    Vancouver Canucks 2011 NHL Western Conference Champions Hockey Stick http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Vancouver_Canucks/browse/featuredproduct/665779/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_665000/ff_665779_xl.jpg&w=100 11.95 Vancouver Canucks 2011 NHL Western Conference Champions Hockey Stick
    Majestic New York Islanders Royal Blue Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Islanders/browse/featuredproduct/752594/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_752000/ff_752594_xl.jpg&w=100 47.99 Majestic New York Islanders Royal Blue Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt