Phoenix general manager Don Maloney admitted to the Arizona Republic that Raffi Torres' hit on Marian Hossa in Game 3 was an "error in judgment," but thinks the flack Torres has caught since has been a little much.
"You would think Raffi murdered a bus load of children the way he's portrayed here in Chicago," Maloney said. "It's like, well hold it now. This is a hard-played game.
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"To me, it was part of a hockey play, and I'm not defending. Obviously an offense occurred, but it was not a situation where he took his stick and hit someone in the head.
"We're talking probably two-hundreths of a second it went from being a regular hit to being a little late hit."
Quenneville pays the price:
You had to guess this one was coming.
After blasting officials for not calling a penalty on Raffi Torres following his hit on Marian Hossa in Game 3, Hawks coach Joel Quenneville was fined $10,000 by the league.
Quenneville called Torres' blast on Hossa "a brutal hit," and followed that with "how four guys missed it was hard. The refereeing tonight was a disgrace."
Hossa still hurting:
From purely unscientific deduction, it doesn't sound like the Blackhawks are counting on injured forward Marian Hossa to return to the lineup anytime soon.
"There's no change," Joel Quenneville said Thursday. "I spoke to him Wednesday and he's probably felt the same way over the last few days."
Rookie Brandon Saad was surprisingly calm Thursday morning, despite knowing that he would be in the lineup for Game 4.
"Just knowing that I've played in the league a little bit, that definitely helps," said Saad, who opened the game on the top line with Jonathan Toews and Andrew Brunette. "I was definitely nervous at the start of the season, but since I've been a part of it, it's more exciting this time."
Join the club:
While the Hawks were without Marian Hossa for Game 4, the Coyotes for the second straight game were sans forwards Lauri Korpikoski and Martin Hanzal.
"You hope you have that depth," Phoenix coach Dave Tippett said. "You don't know what you have until it gets thrown in there. We're certainly getting tested right now."
He said it:
"I think (Jonathan) Toews took a late shot there after the whistle, so I just protected my goalie and stood up for myself and my team. That's playoff hockey right there."
-- Phoenix defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson on the scrum at the end of the second period in Game 3