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Zac Rinaldo Suspended For Two Games

NEW YORK (February 13, 2012)—Philadelphia Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo has been suspended for two games, without pay, for a charging incident in which he launched himself to hit Detroit Red Wings defenseman Jonathan Ericsson during NHL Game #829 in Detroit on Sunday, Feb. 12, the National Hockey League’s Department of Player Safety announced today.

Under the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, and based on his average annual salary, Rinaldo will forfeit $5,885.88. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Philadelphia Flyers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: zac+rinaldo

Comments

bezukov's avatar

Cue the pro-Detroit conspiracy talk.

Posted by bezukov from the kids are alright. on 02/13/12 at 10:16 PM ET

SK77's avatar

That’s insanity. The penalty was adequate & on top of that Big E shouldn’t be looking back to admire his passes in a situation like that anyway.

Posted by SK77 on 02/13/12 at 10:19 PM ET

Chet's avatar

yeah, did not seem suspension worthy to me.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 02/13/12 at 10:24 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

on top of that Big E shouldn’t be looking back to admire his passes in a situation like that anyway.

To quote Shanahan from the video:

Although Ericsson should have been more aware and prepared to face an oncoming check after reversing the puck, that still doesn’t allow Rinaldo to launch himself to deliver such a high hit.”

Shanahan mentioned about three times in the video that Rinaldo did everything right EXCEPT launch himself five inches into the air to deliver the check.  Whether or not Ericsson was paying attention had nothing to do with whether or not it’s ok to leap into the air to deliver a check on a guy.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 02/13/12 at 10:25 PM ET

Chet's avatar

it’s not clear to me where the contact is made. doesn’t look like a head shot.

i know the league also wants to crack down on these leaping hits, so this result is not surprising.

Posted by Chet from twitter: thegansen on 02/13/12 at 10:28 PM ET

SK77's avatar

In general—suspension or not—Ericcson needs to be more aware. The Wings don’t want to lose him to an injury in a situation like that because he’s not playing “heads up.”

Also understand the suspension from a “leaping hits” perspective, and trying to rid predatory hits on defensemen behind the net.

It anything E’s lucky he’s so tall. A smaller defenseman would have been absolutely murdered by that hit.

Posted by SK77 on 02/13/12 at 10:32 PM ET

SolidTG7's avatar

Incoming “What about Kronwall?” posts.

Posted by SolidTG7 on 02/13/12 at 10:34 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

Posted by some kid on 02/13/12 at 07:32 PM ET

Ah, ok.  Sorry I misunderstood your point.  I completely agree. He’s got to know that’s coming and protect himself.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 02/13/12 at 10:40 PM ET

Nate A's avatar

Sounds to me like the recent discipline played pretty heavily on this decision. Were it not for that, I’d bet it would’ve only been maybe a fine.

Posted by Nate A from Detroit-ish on 02/13/12 at 10:42 PM ET

RorSchach's avatar

Shanny also explained that 5 games earlier, Rinaldo was fined twice in one game. For a late hit and for slue footing.. Perhaps it’s to send a message to the 21 year old kid. Go look at several of his hits.. He leaps a lot.

Posted by RorSchach from Datsberg on 02/13/12 at 11:01 PM ET

Evilpens's avatar

He is a PUNK!!

Posted by Evilpens on 02/13/12 at 11:04 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

exactly, this is a reputation suspension.. he’s been skating possible suspensions and they can’t just keep fining him since it’s clearly not working.

Ericsson was admiring his pass, paid the price, that’ll happen, keep your head up.

Definitely lept to hit him, Ericsson’s height kept it from being a head hit, not for lack of trying.

Good call Shanny, I didn’t notice the leap before, guess I only look for them in Kronwall hits anymore

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 02/13/12 at 11:41 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

“Ericsson needs to be more aware” is the understatement of the season!

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 02/14/12 at 01:40 AM ET

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decent decision, you can’t launch. Don’t care if Ericsson was looking or not.

Posted by timbits on 02/14/12 at 02:05 AM ET

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The old “keep your head up” refrain is just more blame the victim blabber from the blood and guts crowd.

Posted by timbits on 02/14/12 at 02:09 AM ET

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I would have to agree this seems to be a reputation and previous history ruling more than the actual hit.
HOWEVER. He definitely left his feet to his E52. I definitely thought, during the replays, that if Ericsson were only 6’ instead of 6’5”, he would have ended up with a concussion instead.

Posted by teldar on 02/14/12 at 03:29 AM ET

SK77's avatar

Okay, next question.

How does this exact same situation/hit get handled in the playoffs this year??

Posted by SK77 on 02/14/12 at 04:19 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

you’re right tim, god forbid people actually watched out for themselves or had a responsibility to protect themselves.. nay sayers are just participation-trophy-getting, nothing-is-my-fault, somebody-please-protect me banner carriers who want to give the stanley cup to all 30 teams every year because they all tried so hard

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 02/14/12 at 04:27 AM ET

hdw's avatar

Shanny is kind of clear but still not clear enough.

He points out that Fabio was as valid target and a twerp for looking the wrong way when he should have been aware that he was open for a big hit.

He also points out that Rinaldo does everything right and by the book until the final leap.

Pro Rinaldo could claim that he had to jump to deliver a clean shoulder to shoulder.

Anti Rinaldo could claim that he aimed for a headshot but failed.

But from either side, Shanny hits 4 valid points:
1. Rinaldo did jump into the hit.
2. Fabio should have been aware of it and kept his head up.
3. Rinaldo has a recent history that isn’t pretty.
4. Fabio didn’t seem to be injured.

Those comes together as:
1: Burn him!
2: Nah, blame the target.
3: Burn him even more!
4. Nah, he failed to reach the target’s head.

Quick NHL calculus end up as 1-1+2-1=1

Ie, slap him a bit.

Posted by hdw on 02/14/12 at 05:07 AM ET

Rdwings28's avatar

“Ericsson needs to be more aware” is the understatement of the season!

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 02/13/12 at 10:40 PM ET

Word.

Posted by Rdwings28 on 02/14/12 at 11:10 AM ET

Nathan's avatar

Pro Rinaldo could claim that he had to jump to deliver a clean shoulder to shoulder.

Posted by hdw on 02/14/12 at 02:07 AM ET

Sure, they could claim it, but it would objectively dead wrong. The only clean hits in the game aren’t shoulder-to-shoulder, especially when you talk about players with this type of size difference.

Posted by Nathan from the scoresheet! on 02/14/12 at 11:53 AM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

There’s no rule saying you can jump into your hit if you’re not targeting the head.  So it doesn’t matter if it’s shoulder to shoulder if he jumped into his hit.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 02/14/12 at 12:08 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

Yeah - there is. It’s the charging rule. You can’t jump. That much is clear.

42.1 Charging - A minor or major penalty shall be imposed on a player who skates or jumps into, or charges an opponent in any manner.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 02/14/12 at 12:27 PM ET

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okay.. so if rinaldo was only guilty of a charging penalty then why are we even discussing a suspension? where will this end? will the league begin starting teams shorthanded for the next game because of penalties that were missed during the previous game? Maybe im from the blood and guts crowd but i believe that for the last atlaest 60 years there was always a part in the sport for someone who gets under your skin… an instigator or an enforcer to protect your more “star” players if you will… having said that i understand the game is more based on scoring now and “fans” want to see that but who decided to change that all of a sudden? what was the need for the change… I have watched many oh shanahans suspensions most i believe should be penalties at most while others deserve what they have gotten like marchand.. there was a basis for suspension….

Posted by ian from pennsylvania on 02/15/12 at 12:27 AM ET

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sorry i forgot to say if hes guilty of a penalty why wasnt it just settled in the box why is there a need for further action… does that mean all penalties should be reviewed? if so whats the point of having refs?

Posted by ian from pa on 02/15/12 at 12:28 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

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