The Phoenix Coyotes winger learned Saturday that he will be suspended 25 games for his check on Hossa in Tuesday's Game 3. Brendan Shanahan, the NHL's senior vice president of player safety, announced the decision after a hearing with Torres in New York City on Friday.
With 8:20 remaining in the first period of Tuesday's game, Hossa gained control of the puck near the teams' benches. After flipping the puck to a teammate, Hossa started to skate toward the center of the rink before being crushed by Torres, who appeared to jump and lower a shoulder into Hossa's head. The hit can be seen in the video below.
Hossa, blindsided by the hit, was sent sprawling to the ice and after a few seconds, play was stopped as medical staff attended to the fallen Blackhawks player. Some of Hossa's teammates attacked Torres, livid with the perceived dirty play.
As trainers worked to stabilize Hossa's head and neck, a stretcher was brought onto the ice and Hossa was carted off. Surprisingly, referees neglected to give Torres a penalty for the punishing hit. Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville was fined $10,000 for his comments after the game in which he called the four referees a "disgrace."
Torres avoided a penalty, but his luck wasn't as strong with the NHL higher-ups. And Torres' history no doubt played a role in his lengthy 25-game suspension.
Last season, Torres earned a four-game suspension for a high hit to Edmonton Oilers forward Jordan Eberle. In January of this season, Torres again drew the ire of the NHL, landing a two-game suspension for a leaping hit to Minnesota Wild defenseman Nate Prosser.
Torres also has a history with the Blackhawks. Last season as a member of the Vancouver Canucks, Torres cleaned out Blackhawks defender Brent Seabrook behind the net during the playoffs, giving Seabrook a concussion and forcing him to miss two playoff games.
Hossa, who led Chicago with 77 points during the regular season, did not suit up for Game 4 and will not play in Saturday's Game 5. The Blackhawks have their backs against the wall, trailing the Coyotes 3-1 in the best-of-seven series.
Torres, a 10-year veteran who has played for six NHL teams, will miss the remainder of this season's playoffs due to the suspension. Any games remaining on the banishment will carry over to the 2012-13 season.
Image Source: Wikimedia Commons
Video Source: YouTube (Fred Murtz)