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Randy's Ramblings - 4/19/2012

Thursday, 04.19.2012 / 2:30 PM
By Randy Hahn - Sharks TV, Play-by-Play Broadcaster / The Daily Chomp
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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 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Pavelski 82 41 38 23 79
J. Thornton 82 11 65 20 76
P. Marleau 82 33 37 0 70
L. Couture 65 23 31 21 54
B. Burns 69 22 26 26 48
T. Wingels 77 16 22 11 38
D. Boyle 75 12 24 -8 36
J. Demers 75 5 29 14 34
T. Hertl 37 15 10 11 25
M. Nieto 66 10 14 -4 24
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Stalock 12 5 2 .932 1.87
A. Niemi 39 17 7 .913 2.39
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