Rinaldo's 'stupid' penalty throws off Flyers in loss

Rinaldo's 'stupid' penalty throws off Flyers in loss

Flyers on what went wrong against Stars

December 7, 2013, 6:30 pm
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Zac Rinaldo accumulated 27 penalty minutes in four seconds of action in Saturday's 5-1 loss to the Stars. (AP)


DALLAS – The game began with the Stars getting a seven-minute power play thanks to what coach Craig Berube called a “stupid” penalty from Zac Rinaldo.

When the period ended, the Flyers led 1-0, but their PK units were pretty much spent (nine minutes on the ice by then) and their entire lineup chemistry was a mess.

They ended up losing, 5-1, to Dallas on Saturday (see Instant Replay).

“He went out there and punched him in the head a few times and [it was] stupid,” Berube said. “I didn’t say anything to him. I haven’t seen him.”

Rinaldo came onto the ice and made a beeline toward Antoine Rossel, then began pounding on him. Roussel covered up.

The result was only Rinaldo getting the fighting major, but he also picked up a minor for instigation, a 10-minute misconduct and a game misconduct. Roussel was not penalized.

In all, his shift and entire game lasted four seconds in which he accumulated 27 penalty minutes. And he left his team with a seven-minute power play to kill.

What happened?

“Go ask him,” Berube challenged.

Rinaldo would not talk to any reporters after the game.

Usually a PK like that picks a team up but it ruined the Flyers, who seemed flat-footed and were badly outskated the rest of the game while their defense up the middle was atrocious.

“Our penalty kill was excellent and held us in the game and we didn’t take advantage of it,” Berube said. “Those guys killed off seven minutes and did a great job and we never picked up off it.”

Goalie Steve Mason called it “a great kill all-around” but it had no aftereffects in the Flyers' favor.

“At the same time, seven minutes, then we take another one at the end of the period,” he said. “Nine minutes of penalty killing in one period really taxed our penalty killers and just doesn’t put you in great position moving forward.”

Kimmo Timonen logged 4:53 ice time on the kill before getting hurt (upper body) late in the second period and not returning (see story).

“Obviously,” he said when asked if it impacted all-around.

“I don’t think I’ve ever seen seven minutes [at the start], at least for a long time,” he said. “That’s a lot of minutes to kill right away. We did a good job there. Usually, what happens, you get the momentum after that.

“But some of the guys had to play more. I thought we would have come out of there better. I haven’t seen a seven-minute power play in many years.”

In Peter Laviolette’s first game as Flyers coach on Dec. 5, 2009, against Washington, the Caps got a nine-minute power play but that did not occur 1:15 into the game like this one did. That happened 14:33 into the first period and Washington scored three power-play goals.

This one, the Flyers killed entirely, but the Stars have the 29th-worst power play in hockey. They do their damage at even strength, not on the power play.

“Seven minutes is a lot of minutes and a lot of minutes for guys staying on the bench,” team captain Claude Giroux said. “You don’t get your legs going and some of our guys ended up playing too much. Obviously, it’s not a way we wanted to start.”

Although the Flyers scored the game’s first goal at the end of that first period, the game got out of hand late in the second period with the Stars scoring three goals in 62 seconds to blow it open.