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Randy's Ramblings - 4/19/2012

Thursday, 04.19.2012 / 2:30 PM
By Randy Hahn - Sharks Broadcaster / The Daily Chomp
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The Daily Chomp
Randy\'s Ramblings - 4\/19\/2012
So Raffi Torres is in trouble for a questionable hit in the playoffs. What a shocker!

The Phoenix Coyotes forward has an in person hearing scheduled Friday, with the Brendan Shanahan, the NHL’s head of player safety, to explain his predatory open ice hit on Chicago’s Marian Hossa in Tuesday night’s playoff game. Hossa left the ice on a stretcher and was briefly hospitalized. Hossa is likely out for the next game of the series and may not play again in the first round.

You can debate all day whether or not Torres’ hit was dirty or not but he’s already been indefinitely suspended, pending the hearing, and odds are he’ll get hit with a big suspension. Torres is a repeat offender, and if you’re a Sharks fan you know all about that.

In the 2006 playoffs the Sharks beat Nashville in 5 games in the opening round and moved onto Round 2 against Edmonton. The Sharks, a five seed, were favored over the eighth seeded Oilers. The Sharks won the opening game 2-1 and the second game by the same score. Two memorable things happened in game 2 of that series. The Sharks killed 101 seconds of a 5 on 3 penalty in that game (“greatest penalty kill in Sharks history”) and Raffi Torres blindsided Sharks rookie Milan Michalek with a shot to the head that knocked him out of the rest of the series. It’s no surprise that Torres went after Michalek. The now Ottawa Senator already had 3 assists in the series by the time Torres put him down for good. We know the rest of the story. The Oilers battled back from a 0-2 defecit, won the series in 6 games, and went on to game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final where they lost to Bred Hedican and the Carolina Hurricanes.

And how about last year against Vancouver in the third round. Torres targeted Joe Thornton with a big hit and Jumbo Joe was never the same again in the series.

Love him or not, Raffi Torres is a designated “hit man”. It’s one of the primary reasons teams go after him. They want somebody who’s willing to go after a top end player on the other side in the playoffs, and put a big hit on him, preferably knocking him out. The Phoenix Coyotes knew exactly what they were getting when they signed Torres last summer. They were getting a playoff hit man. In today’s NHL environment Torres hit on Hossa crossed the line and will probably cost him big. But if you look at his hit on Michalek back in 2006 it’s pretty much the same thing.



Yes, Raffi Torres will probably be out of the rest of the series against Chicago once the suspension comes down sometime Friday. But the bottom line is that Chicago’s best player is also probably out of the rest of the series as a result. Mission accomplished again by “The Hit Man”.


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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 ANA 66 42 17 7 196 179 91
2 NSH 66 41 18 7 196 162 89
3 STL 64 40 19 5 198 162 85
4 CHI 64 38 21 5 188 152 81
5 MIN 64 35 22 7 181 164 77
6 VAN 64 36 24 4 184 176 76
7 WPG 65 32 21 12 180 175 76
8 CGY 64 35 25 4 182 165 74
9 LAK 63 30 21 12 171 164 72
10 SJS 65 32 25 8 185 183 72
11 DAL 65 29 26 10 203 215 68
12 COL 64 28 25 11 170 183 67
13 ARI 65 21 37 7 142 220 49
14 EDM 64 18 36 10 145 213 46

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2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Pavelski 65 32 28 14 60
L. Couture 65 22 33 1 55
J. Thornton 61 12 43 1 55
B. Burns 65 16 32 -1 48
P. Marleau 65 15 33 -14 48
T. Wingels 58 13 16 -3 29
T. Hertl 65 10 15 -1 25
M. Vlasic 60 8 12 14 20
M. Nieto 55 6 14 -8 20
J. Braun 54 1 19 7 20
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Niemi 25 17 7 .913 2.61
A. Stalock 6 7 1 .904 2.66
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