Bay Area

Sharks’ Raffi Torres suspended 41 games

Monday, San Jose Sharks forward Raffi Torres was handed a 41-game suspension for his illegal hit on Jakob Silfverberg during Saturday night’s preseason game against the Anaheim Ducks.

Torres was given a match penalty for the hit and immediately ejected from the game. Perhaps knowing what was in store for him, Torres reportedly waived his right to an in-person hearing, and instead conducted a phone hearing with the NHL’s Department of Player Safety.

As he was offered an in-person hearing, Torres knew the league was looking at a suspension of more than five games. Now he knows he’s on the shelf for half the season, although he does have the right to appeal to NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman. If the suspension is upheld, Torres will lose over $400,000 in salary.

Torries hit was out of line, and in light of his history – four suspensions, three fines and two warnings – the length of suspension is probably appropriate. The hit was clearly late and would have been interference at the very least. But, with Torres extending upward and driving his shoulder into Silfverberg’s head, it’s difficult to make an argument for a more lenient discipline.

Torres missed the entire season last season and most of the season before with a recurring knee injury. Now, for the first half of the season, the Sharks will once again be looking for another player to add Torres catalytic blend of grit and hustle.

Photo Credit: Tom Mihalek/AP Photo

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Ray Hartjen

A Public Relations pro by day, by night @RayHartjen follows parallel - yet somehow still often conflicting - paths searching for hair metal guitar legend status, a career as a journeyman 4th line center in the NHL, and the treasured laminates to be a hanger-on in the circus that is Formula 1.
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