Raffi Torres Suspension: League Not In Rush To Hand Down Appeal Decision

The NHL suspended Phoenix Coyotes defenseman Raffi Torres during the NHL Playoffs after a brutal hit on Chicago Blackhawks' Marian Hossa. The hit was dangerous and crossed the line, which contributed to the suspension being for 25 games and spilling over into the regular season. Naturally, Torres has appealed the decision, but the NHL isn't looking to rule on the appeal quickly

"I think the appeal process works quite well because most of you don't know this, while Brendan Shanahan administers commissioner discipline, as it's called, the fact is, I don't get involved in the decisions that he makes, in large part because that's what we require under our system and our procedures because any appeal will come to me, and I hear it on a de novo basis without deference to the original decision," NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said at a press conference on Wednesday.

"Mr. Torres sent us a notice of appeal about two weeks after the original decision was rendered. We promptly scheduled an in-person hearing, which he requested," Bettman said. "I now have to write an opinion, which I will do, am doing, but there are a couple of other things going on. Since Phoenix's season is over, the timing of this isn't quite as imperative as if the Coyotes were still playing. But in the not-too-distant future, I'll issue an opinion. "

For more on Torres, head over to Phoenix Coyotes blog Five For Howling and SB Nation Arizona. For more on the entire league, check out SB Nation's NHL hub.

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