Chicago Sun-Times

No suspension for Raffi Torres for hit on Brent Seabrook

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The Blackhawks are still irate. Their views of Raffi Torres' hit to the head of Brent Seabrook didn't change overnight.

"If you look at the tape, [Seabrook] is going for the puck, but he doesn't have possession of the puck yet and he just gets a blatant hit right to the head," defenseman Duncan Keith said Monday at the United Center. "Yeah, do guys need to have their heads up? Absolutely, but at the same time you could say that about any hit."

Torres will not receive supplementary discipline for his hit on Seabrook, which occurred at 12:14 in the second period behind the Hawks goal. (Click here for the video.)

Here is the NHL's official ruling in a statement from league disciplinarian Colin Campbell: "When Rule 48 (Illegal Check to the Head) was unanimously adopted by the general managers in March 2010, there was no intention to make this type of shoulder hit to the head illegal. In fact, at that time, we distributed a video to all players and teams that showed a similar hit on a defenseman by an attacking forward coming from the opposite direction behind the net and stated that this is a 'legal play'.

"This hit meets none of the criteria that would subject Torres to supplemental discipline, including an application of Rule 48: he did not charge his opponent or leave his feet to deliver this check. He did not deliver an elbow or extended forearm and this hit was not 'late'."

Seabrook said he definitely felt a hit to the head.

"I think he kept his elbow in, but he hit the head first," said Seabrook, who will play in Game 4. "As far as I'm concerned, that's the first thing I felt. It was the only thing I felt. The rest of my body is feeling the rest of it today. Last night, all I could really feel [was it] in my ear. The way it looked to me, the head was hit first. Whether he was targeting it or not, he made contact with the head first."

Torres doesn't have the best reputation in the league, and it was thought that his history would warrant a suspension.

Torres was playing in his first game Sunday since getting suspended four games for elbowing the Edmonton Oilers' Jordan Eberle late in the regular season. Earlier in Game 3, Torres was assessed a roughing penalty for a high hit on Brian Campbell in the corner.

Was Seabrook surprised that Torres didn't receive a suspension?

"Yep," he said. "I think with his history that hit deserves a suspension. I'm not going to sit up here and complain about that. It's a fast game. Things happen quick. You have a split second to make a decision. I don't think he was trying to hit me in the head, but at the same time, if the league is not going to suspend somebody for that, I just don't really understand that.

"I think the league is suspending based on the injury of the hit and whether or not the guy missed some games or whether he's lying there, getting carried off on a stretcher. I think that's wrong. They're trying to change the game and they're trying to take head hits out of the game. You've got to make the same suspension [and] the same judgment, whether or not he was lying there and taken off on a stretcher or he played the next shift."

Coach Joel Quenneville had a different view. He's mainly upset Torres only received a two-minute interference penalty for the hit.

"I have no problem with that as far as how the league views it," Quenneville said. "They know the standards. They know the criteria. I think the call on the ice is probably where we got hurt the most. It was a major penalty because he didn't touch the puck. An impact hit like that you can be exposed to severe injuries."

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27 Comments

"I'm not going to complain, but...." I thought the Canucks were supposed to be the whiners. And what was he doing out on the ice for his next shift? They can talk about player safety all they want but to put a guy on the ice after getting hit that hard in the head is pure hypocrisy. There should be some fine leveled at the coaching staff for that.

Wah wah wah, keep crying you bunch of sissies and clean up the Cup for the next Stanley Cup Champ. The first thing you learn when playing hockey is do not skate with your head down. Seabrook is a wuss and whining to the press is d-bag move.

Watched the video,Case dismissed

Finally the NHL gets it right. You cant call it a blind-side hit b/c Torres hit Seabrook head-on. Seabrook needs to be more aware of where he is if he's going to skate with his head down.

soyy, sour grapes. your coach said they could score 4 goals on a major penalty??? HA!!!! against the Canucks??? crazy.

Hahahaha stop crying like babies

While I think the Torres hit was nasty, the hit is not technically illegal.

Check out this video from the NHL website that discusses what is and is not legal.

http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=618&id=63737&loc=interstitialskip

Check out about 4 minutes in – it’s a near duplicate of the Torres hit, and it’s called legal.

Abdelkader's hit on Seabrook was WAY worse, and didn't draw a penalty.

It's clear Seabrook has not learned his lesson. He needs to be more aware of where he is, where other players are, and what is coming. I think Queneville has to take some responsibility here, because Seabrook is playing too many minutes, and is tired. Frankly, I'm betting he is still concussed from the Abdelkader hit and the Hawks are playing him even though he is not fit to play.

Hey Mas.. it doesnt matter if Seabs came right back out.. the rule states its a major penalty for blind side hits. THAT WAS A BLINDSIDE HIT!!!! Seabs is lucky he wasnt knocked the *^*^#(@ out. The rule doesnt say.. "If only injured".. jesus... Bottom line... this series shows how that the Canucks are pos's.. They are gonna win the series.. ok fine. But BS like that is not needed. Then.. at the end of the game.. Frolik gets hammered from behind and flattened. Laugh it up Nucks... Given a summer off to re-group and time to think about this series... look out. This may be your year.. but Toews and crew will be back.. no doubt with a slightly re-built/bigger roster... All things considered... a 4 game sweep is perfect.. it will stew in their guts all summer... The hangover will be over... they will be ready.. Cant wait... Just cannot wait...

stop whining hawks!!! This series is OVER!! Go Canucks Go!

The league is a joke. Bolland has been out for a month because a thug on Tampa gave him a cheap shot to the head and this thug Torres is out there trying to hurt people and they do nothing.

I am from Vancovuer and can somewhat understand why this hit is suspendable. But, like Bob Mackenzie said on TSN, the GM's specifically made the zone behind the net a hitting zone. What does that mean? The hit is the same as if a defenseman made a suicide pass and the forward had the puck right beside him and gets clocked by the opposing defenceman before he touches it (that type of hit is not suspendable because it's not a lateral hit, rule 48 specifically calls for lateral hits only). Anywhere else on the ice it would be viewed as a lateral blindside hit, but the NHL specifically allows D man to be clocked coming around from the behind the net as they deem it a hitting zone.

Vancouver fans don't have an issue. Chicago fans do. What a surprise? Detroit's gonna win, anyways.

I am in no way biased towards either one of these teams. Actually I hate them both, but this has to be one of the dumbest calls by the nhl this season. There is getting to be such an inconsistency on these calls for hits to the head that no one takes it seriously. I mean Torres just got off a suspension for a hit to the head and he had plenty time to think about this hit before he actually laid it on. I feel that he needs at least a slight suspension just for making a poor decision to hit somebody in that position.

Look at the video, he cruises in, hits with his shoulder, does not leave his skates, Seabrook is "casually" taking the puck, head down, almost like slow motion, it is a hockey hit. Legal. If Seabrook continues to skate around at half speed he is going to have a short career. He was hurt enough to be smiling on the bench? Hurt enough to play next shift? Hurt enough not to yack off to the press? You got beat big guy. Period.

Wow...you seriously believe that this hit was not cause for a suspension..unreal..I would love to see the reaction of you Canuck pukes if it were one of the Tampon twins who got hit like that... because that hit would have put them out for a couple of years...but then again you guys are pretty tough rolling out neanderthals like this on your team..

I am in no way biased towards either one of these teams. Actually I hate them both, but this has to be one of the dumbest calls by the nhl this season. There is getting to be such an inconsistency on these calls for hits to the head that no one takes it seriously. I mean Torres just got off a suspension for a hit to the head and he had plenty time to think about this hit before he actually laid it on. I feel that he needs at least a slight suspension just for making a poor decision to hit somebody in that position.

Welcome to the big leagues boys... Your team has been playing dirty and hitting for years. Now that you get one little hit you dont like you start whining like the world has ended.
Seabrook needs to look where he is going. Period. Simple. If you arent looking where you are going and crash into the boards... should the boards get a penalty too?
This is play off season. Wimps need not apply

I am a Hawks fan and when I saw the hit I didn't think it was illegal. The announcers kept saying that he hit him with his elbow, when he clearly did not. Now today I hear he left his feet. Well, I have watched it about 7 times, and I don't see that either. The Hawks don't have enough manpower to play with the physical teams. They were the best team last year. Not this year.

Ive been a blackhawks season ticketholder for the last 5 years and I sit in row three. I was at the game yesterday and I have never seen anyone like this Torres thug on the ice blatantly trying to injure people. The league's lame response will now encourage him to keep doing it and someone is going to get seriously hurt. If Bolland plays you know this guy will go right after his head first chance he gets. The blackhawks have to retaliate against the Sedin's or Kesler. Its street justice now.

Hi girls, don't forget your tutu's for game 4.

Torres sucks. There's quite a few players who will have him lined up good next season...

Middle of the third period while short handed Vancouver had the breakaway which was saved and the play continued into the corner. At that time Campbell elbowed Kesler in the back of the head and got called for the elbow; where is the suspension/dirty play talk for that?
Tallon ruined this team with his "mail mistake" and we are stuck with a bunch of Ice Hogs which are not ready to play playoff hockey.
Jumping ahead to next year, don't be surprised when bar hopping Kaner is dealt away. Think his careless attitude will be dumped.

Really??? Do you watch the games while sitting so close or does the glass obstruct your view?
Probert, Marchment, Avery, Grimson, Domi, Brown to name a few. four of these guys are formor Hawks....

RALPHIE TORREZ wrote "Wah wah wah, keep crying you bunch of sissies and clean up the Cup for the next Stanley Cup Champ. The first thing you learn when playing hockey is do not skate with your head down. Seabrook is a wuss and whining to the press is d-bag move."

C'mon cuz! I mean, did you see me play Sunday? I was just out there to pound the living dogcrap out of the other guys. I mean, I don't think I ever even touched the puck the whole time I was on the ice! You gotta understand one main thing about NHL hockey. The ratings go up every time thugs like me bring the hammer down. People like to think that hockey is a sport and perhaps it still is at the junior level. But the big money wants violence on the ice to gather viewers. I mean, why do you think The Sopranos was on top for so long? And you figure, will the ratings be higher Tuesday night with me on the Nucks bench or sitting out another suspension? Ask Colin boy, he'll fill you in on the true dope.

Was not needed! That hit was terrible!

Raffi ur a goon! You need to be taught a huge lesson! Hawks won the Cup but nucks won't. Sounds like a lot of jealousy against the Hawks.Wow!! To the others wanting the nuckleheads to win by knocking players out, u will be disappointed. I agree with the comments if it was on your Sedin Sistas, Kesler or fell on LuLu, u would have been crying esp ur hypocrite coach Vyn. He's the biggest whining, weenie of all. Nucks are not going to win. I am goin for the Pens, Caps, Preds, or even the stupid Deadwings first. They deserve it more cuz have more class & hate u whining Canadian teams. eh, get ready to golf, soon!!! hahahaha Luv my Hawks & Kane isn't going anywhere. Brings in too much money & kids, people luv him! lol

let's hope that the Hawks show more class and grace in losing toninght than they did last year when they won.

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Adam L. Jahns is a native Chicagoan hailing from the Far Northwest Side. Jahns has been with the Sun-Times for more than four years, covering the Hawks, Bears, Cubs, Sox and high schools.

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This page contains a single entry by Adam L. Jahns published on April 18, 2011 12:44 PM.

Video: Raffi Torres takes out Brent Seabrook was the previous entry in this blog.

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