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No suspension for Flyers’ Rinaldo for hit on Caps’ Grabovski

Sep 28, 2013, 9:53 AM EDT

The NHL has decided that Philadelphia Flyers tough guy Zac Rinaldo won’t receive a fine or suspension for his hit on Washington Capitals forward Mikhail Grabovski from Friday.

League discipline rep Brendan Shanahan posted an explanation for the lack of supplementary discipline on Twitter, asserting that Grabovski put himself in a vulnerable position while Rinaldo “stayed low” with his elbow. Shanahan also believes that Rinaldo, 23, didn’t charge Grabovski, 29.

Shanahan posted a screenshot to clarify his explanation:


Here’s video of the hit for your own perusal, though:

Grabovski told last night that he wasn’t happy with the check, but at least he seems OK.

“Chara? No, not Chara,” Grabovski said. “Not a smart play. It wasn’t the first time. I remember what he do. It was a pretty hard hit but I’m OK right now and ready to play next game.”

(Zdeno Chara delivered these two checks on Grabovski in 2011.)

Overall, the Capitals might not be pleased with how this turned out, but the bright side is that it seems like their newly minted second-line center should make it to the season-opener in one piece.

  1. killerpgh - Sep 28, 2013 at 10:08 AM

    Seems like the right decision to me.

    • joey4id - Sep 28, 2013 at 10:44 AM

      Yep! We dish on Shanahan way too much. Lets give credit where credit is due. Excellent decision.

    • dueman - Sep 28, 2013 at 1:19 PM

      I think that this decision comes as a result of the new wording on the head shot rule. I think that last year this hit would have been suspendable, only because Rinaldo’s first contact is with Grabo’s head. It seems that with the new wording they are putting more onus on players to keep their head up, and to not put themselves in a vulnerable position, which is a good thing! Maybe now players will stop turning their backs when they know someone is bearing down on them. If this is how they are going to go, I think that we’re going to see some good checks this year as players won’t be so worried about being suspended every time they throw a good body check. This is good!

  2. broadstreetsbaddest88 - Sep 28, 2013 at 10:46 AM

    It was comical seeing all these people last night on here saying that it was such a dirty hit and that Rinaldo is a dirty player. Next time people should stop seeing his name and judging him and start watchin the video. It was obviously a clean enough hit that even Shanahan agreed which who we all know likes to hand out his punishment based on last names alone. Anyone that thinks that was a dirty hit is either hating on him cause his name or team or they should not be watchin hockey cause they have not a clue what there watchin

    • joey4id - Sep 28, 2013 at 10:50 AM

      So! Can we put to rest the notion that Shanahan hands out suspensions based on the name on the players jersey? Unless he’s a repeat offender of course.

      • broadstreetsbaddest88 - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:22 AM

        This one was so obvious There was no way around it. Shanahan didn’t have a choice but to say it was clean. I’m sure it took everything in him to type the words clean hit and rinaldo in the same sentence. If he had the slightest chance to say it was dirty he woulda cause of who it was. People gotta get the notion outta there head he’s a dirty player. His job is to check people and draw penalties and fight when need be. Anyone would love to have him on there team

      • joey4id - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:25 AM

        Hmm! Do you think he’s the best “enforcer” in the league? I would take Chris Neil from Ottawa before Rinaldo because he’s a better hockey player. Not saying Rinaldo doesn’t do his jiob well in Philly,.

      • broadstreetsbaddest88 - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:52 AM

        He’s not an enforcer he’s on the checkin line to check people and draw penalties and when need be he fights. He’s not here to strictly fight that’s why we got jay rosehill. But when rinaldo does fight he’s one of the best fighters pound for pound in the league. Chris Neil is definitely a great fighter I won’t argue that but they both have different roles so ya can’t compare them two

      • joey4id - Sep 28, 2013 at 12:11 PM

        Ok. But! Here’s the way I see it. Goon = just there to fight and can’t play a regular shift. Ex: John Scott. Enforcer = a player who can play a regular shift and fight when needed. Ex: Chris Neil, Brandon Brust etc..

      • broadstreetsbaddest88 - Sep 28, 2013 at 12:30 PM

        Majority of enforcers aren’t good at putting points up to. Rinaldo actually is a decent hockey player when put in the position but he’s not givin much chance cause he’s better at what he does now. In a perfect world enforcers would be good offensively too but it’s rare to find enforcers that are good offensively as they are at fighting. I can definitely appreciate ones that are good at both though

      • joey4id - Sep 28, 2013 at 12:53 PM

        I don’t disagree with you. I see enforcers not so much being gifted offensively, but rather not being a defensive liability. Your top six forwards will get the majority of the team’s offensive production, and the odd points from the bottom six are bonus points.

  3. curioustraveler13 - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:14 AM

    It’s only preseason but I think that the no suspension is the right call. Rinaldo is like a young matt Cooke only less productive offensively. I know it’s only preseason but the flyers look the exact same to me. Their real good on special teams, terrible on defense, shaky in net, and first line aside just awful on 5 on 5. With Detroit now in the east I don’t think the flyers are post season material as it stands.

  4. imnotyourbuddyguy - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:17 AM

    You guys patting Shanny on the back make me laugh. If you haven’t figured out that the only reason there is no suspension is because Grabo is ok, then I don’t know what to tell yas. Shanny is a buffoon, if Grabo was hurt, then Shanny would have suspended him.

    • curioustraveler13 - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:20 AM

      Explain how he handed about 5 suspension out last year and the victim finished the game. On the flip side he’s not handed out suspensions and a player has been hurt enough to not return to the game. Your logic is flawed.

      • imnotyourbuddyguy - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:59 AM

        You want me to explain Shanny in a way that follows logic?

        Ya right

  5. broadstreetbeatdown - Sep 28, 2013 at 11:38 AM

    Translation from Shanny: The refs got it wrong. No elbow, no charge, no dirty hit. Clean, hard body check.

  6. phillyphanatic77 - Sep 28, 2013 at 1:32 PM

    What bothers me most about this is that Rinaldo gets a five minute major (which led to a Caps goal) and a game misconduct for a clean hit.. and yet Rechlicz clearly targets Grossmann’s head (a guy with concussion issues) a few minutes later AND leads with his elbow and he gets what? I think maybe a minor. It’s ridiculous the way Rinaldo is essentially blacklisted just because his hits are so violent. Yeah he was a dirty player his rookie season but he’s totally cleaned his game up and become a valuable contributor. I’d just like to see non-reactionary calls from officials working Flyers games.

    • jcantwell82 - Sep 28, 2013 at 3:25 PM

      Rinaldo is working on the reactionary call issue. He’s trying to talk to refs more. They showed a lot of it last year, joking with the refs, asking then questions on hits, etc.

  7. philly4lyfe - Sep 28, 2013 at 7:15 PM

    I wish the refs woulda got the call right. 5 min major and game misconduct for being zac ranaldo.

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