Last night the Philadelphia Flyers played the last place Buffalo Sabres. One player should not set skates on the ice again this season. Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo took a run at Buffalo Sabres defenseman Chad Ruhwedel, and it looks like he wanted to hurt him. There is no other explanation the hit.
It happened at 4:29 of the third period, with the Flyer comfortably in control of the game. In the video you can see that Rinalso turned his shoulders in to a head seeking missile. Taking aim at Rubwhedel’s head, and nothing else. You can watch the video from Pro Hockey Talk below.
For his despicable choice, Rinaldo will have a hearing with The Department of Player Safety today. There is no indication that this is a phone hearing, at least not on the NHL’s web site. Hits like this by any player in the NHL are one of the main reasons the league finds it self in the cross-hairs of negative publicity.
Zac Rinaldo does have a history, this quote from USA Today gives some details of that history.
He was fined $5,000 for a late hit and a slew-footing infraction during a February 2012 game against the New Jersey Devils. Eight days later, he was suspended for two games for charging Detroit Red Wings defenseman Jonathan Ericsson.
Rinaldo’s history will most likely earn him an extra game onto what ever suspension he receives. As I said earlier he doesn’t deserve to play again this season, but the NHL is not likely do be that hard on him. I’d guess 4 games is all he gets. As for Ruhwedel, Ted Nolan said after the game he has a concussion.