FanPost

The Raffi Torres Hit: Sorry, I Don't See It


You know, I've looked and looked and looked at this play and it doesn't look like a dirty play to me.

A) Was it late? No. Torres hits him less than a second after the puck is gone. If that is no longer acceptable you might as well just legislate checking out of the game.

B) Did Torres leave his feet? Not really. Torres does have a skate come off the ice after the hit because he loses his balance, but he in no way jumped into Hossa.

C) Did Torres charge into Hossa? No. Torres glides into that check. The force of the check is so violent in part because Hossa starts skating towards his own net (and into Torres check.)

D) Did Torres lead with an elbow or target the head of Hossa? No and no. Hossa seems to have been hurt with a whiplash effect when he fell.

When Torterella last night compared this hit by Chris Neil on Brian Boyle to the Torres on Hossa hit, he has a point. In fact the Neil hit is LATER than the Torres hit, otherwise they are pretty similar... Neil doesnt leave his feet, doesnt charge, doesnt lead with an elbow, doesnt target the head, and injures his opponent anyway. And none of the on ice officials, in either game, thought they were even penalties.

"Well," some have said, "Torres is a repeat offender," which would be fine if there was an actual offense here. There isn't.

The NHL has never been a model of consistency in these matters, but they have somehow managed to make things worse. Based upon the precedent of the Torres suspension, Neil should get five games (same type of hit, same injurous outcome, different disciplinary history), for a play that is a borderline penalty call at best. (I could see calling Interference on Neil.... it was a later hit than Torres.)

What is gonna suck is when a same type of play is called against Backes or Oshie. Given the way things are going, that will be a matter of "when" not "if."

Please make sure that any content you post is appropriate to Game Time, which means that it pertains to hockey, the Blues, frosty adult beverages, or puppies.

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