clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Zac Rinaldo suspended four games for hit to head of Sabres' Chad Ruhwedel

New, comments

The dangerous headshot by the Flyers forward leaves him suspended for the second time in his career, as he'll sit for the remainder of the regular season.

Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

The announcement regarding Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo's punishment for his brutal headshot on Sunday came in today, and the Department of Player Safety has decided to suspend Rinaldo for four games.

The summary of the NHL's decision can be seen in the video below.

The video makes note of the fact that Rinaldo "takes a poor angle of approach", and that Ruhwedel's position does not prevent Rinaldo from making a legal hit and that it's his responsibility to do so (which, of course, he does not). It does mention that Ruhwedel's injury and Rinaldo's history factor into the decision.

The suspension will cost Rinaldo $15,384.60 in salary, which goes towards the Players' Emergency Assistance Fund. Rinaldo will sit out the team's final four regular-season games, though he will be eligible to return for the team's first playoff game (if/when that takes place).

Given the dangerous nature of the hit, and given that Rinaldo does have a bit of a history, the punishment here seems about right, if maybe even a bit light (though because it was a phone hearing he could only have been given up to five games). Since it's his second suspension with the NHL (and taking into account that he already takes more penalties than anyone else in the league), the onus will be on him to be that much more careful in placing his hits right when he makes his way back into the lineup.