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Is Torres’ elbow on Ference suspension-worthy?

Dec 29, 2011, 4:13 PM EST

That’s the big question coming out of Boston today after Phoenix Coyotes forward Raffi Torres drilled B’s defenseman Andrew Ference last night. Here’s the hit (and subsequent response from Adam McQuaid):

Over at NESN.com, John Beattie posted a compelling frame-by-frame breakdown of the incident. It provides some pretty damning evidence — Torres appears to abandon possession/pursuit of the puck and makes Ference’s head the principal point of contact.

And while he appears to lead with his shoulder, Torres’ follow-through involves an awful lot of elbow.

The aftermath of the play was a two-minute elbowing minor and five-minute fighting major for Torres (negated by McQuaid’s two-minute instigator and five-minute fighting major). There’s no word yet if the hit is being reviewed by NHL discipline czar Brendan Shanahan, but Torres’ history would seemingly warrant a second look.

He was suspended four games (two regular season, two playoff) last year for hitting Edmonton’s Jordan Eberle in the head and found himself embroiled in controversy after laying this hit on Chicago’s Brent Seabrook:

Torres received a two-minute interference penalty on the Seabrook hit, but wasn’t fined or suspended.

  1. pastabelly - Dec 29, 2011 at 5:50 PM

    You won’t hear the Bruins complain like Ruff/Miller. That asskicking by McQuaid was the right response.

  2. hockeyfan2010 - Dec 29, 2011 at 6:03 PM

    Torres should absolutely be suspended for this hit. It’s a clear violation of Rule 48 as principal contact of the hit was made to the head of Ference. Ference didn’t make any sudden motions prior to the hit to put himself in that vulnerable position. Not to mention, Torres seems to have had position on Ference to get to the puck first, but decided to give Ference a check before playing the puck. The check was unnecessary.

    If this wasn’t Raffi Torres, I could see a slap on the wrist from Brendan Shanahan, but with Torres’ history of headhunting, I can’t see how this hit wouldn’t warrant a suspension.

  3. neelyisgod - Dec 29, 2011 at 10:34 PM

    Anyone named Raffi and either a member of or former member of the Canucks is automatically guilty. What have they been teaching in Canada lately? We cannot match size, speed, strength or skill so let’s dive, cheap shot and cry wolf in order to try and win. Phoenix is still Winnipeg’s bitch….

  4. bruins72 - Dec 30, 2011 at 6:54 PM

    If Shannahan did’nt deem the elbow to the head of Ferrence suspension worthy, perhaps his elbow to the head of Av’s D-man and of former teammate Jan Hejda in the very next game will be. Obviously the beatdown at the hands of McQuaide did’nt beat enough sense into his thick skull. I find it hard to believe that any one of his teamates or peers would disagree that Torres is dangerously attempting to injure, one peek into his past does more than confirm any suspicions!! It’s time to ban this bum.

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