Philadelphia Flyers left winger Zac Rinaldo suspended for remainder of season
During the 3rd period of the match against Buffalo Sabres, Rinaldo was penalized for illegal check at 4:29. He hit Sabres defenseman Chad Ruhwedel with elbow on the head. The Flyers won the match 5-2.
Ruhwedel on the other hand was hit pretty badly and ended up going off the ice. He didn’t return for the rest of the game and was later diagnosed by the medical staff and said to be concussed.
The NHL department of player safety said in their verdict that unnecessary aggressiveness and crude approach to check the player was implemented by Rinaldo so he was penalized.
"After Ruhwedel snaps a shot towards the net, Rinaldo launches into him, clipping his head, and causing an injury. Rinaldo takes a poor angle of approach and does not make full body contact,” they said. “Instead, he launches into Ruhwedel with force taking his head and making it the principal point of contact.”
They added that the posture in which Ruhwedel was did not make the hit something which happened because there was no other way but could have easily been averted by Rinaldo.
“It is important to note, that although Ruhwedel is bent over to shoot the puck, his posture does not make head contact unavoidable on what otherwise would have been a legal body check."
Rinaldo will have to shell a sum of $15,384.60 from his pay that will be transferred to Players' Emergency Assistance Fund, which is something ironic. He is out for the remainder of regular season games and will be back only to participate in the playoffs, if the club chooses to play him.