NEW YORK, N.Y. – Philadelphia Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo was suspended by the NHL for two games on Monday for charging Detroit Red Wings defenceman Jonathan Ericsson.
Rinaldo jumped into a body check that sent Ericsson sprawling to the ice behind the net at 13:25 of the first period in Detroit’s 4-3 win over the Flyers on Sunday.
“Although Ericsson should’ve been more aware and prepared to face an oncoming check after reversing the puck, that still doesn’t allow Rinaldo to launch himself to deliver such a high hit,” said NHL disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan in a video statement. “By doing so, Rinaldo turned what might have been a hard, legal body check into an illegal charge.”
Shanahan noted in his statement that Rinaldo had been fined US$5,000 for a late hit and a slew foot in a 6-4 loss to the New Jersey Devils on Feb. 4.
Ericsson was uninjured on the play and stayed in the game.
Rinaldo was given a two-minute minor penalty for charging by in-game officials at the time of the incident.
Rinaldo will forfeit $5,885.88 in salary. The money goes to the Players’ Emergency Assistance Fund.