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Paille Gets Four Games

by John Bishop / Boston Bruins
WILMINGTON, Mass. -- Boston Bruins forward Daniel Paille was fined and given a four game suspension as a result of delivering a check to Dallas' forward Raymond Sawada during the B's 6-3 victory over the Stars on Thursday night.

“Paille delivered a lateral hit where the principal point of contact was his opponent’s head,” said NHL Senior Vice President of Hockey Operations Mike Murphy in a statement. “Additionally, the injury suffered by the Dallas player was a factor in this decision.”

Paille spoke to the media on Friday afternoon.

"Obviously, it was a fast paced play and I just recognized that Sawada was going on a breakaway," said Paille after practice at Wilmington's Ristuccia Memorial Arena. "I just went over to back check and get the puck, but he cut back to the middle.

"And If you look at the play, I'm ahead of him when I hit him. I felt that I hit his shoulder and...looking at the replay I felt that he kind of turned towards me, so I went and finished my check.

"I felt that I hit him in the shoulder at first," he said.

The incident occurred at 8:39 of the second period and Paille was assessed a major penalty and game misconduct under Rule 48 for Illegal Check to the Head.

The Bruins winger will miss the Bruins next four games -- Feb. 5 vs. San Jose, Feb. 9 vs. Montreal, Feb. 11 vs. Detroit and Feb. 13 at Detroit and may return to action Feb. 15 vs. Toronto.

"Right now, although I don't agree with the amount of games, I accept it," added Paille. "I hope that Ray is alright.

"I heard that he does not have a concussion, which is something that I am glad [about].

"I haven't got a hold of him yet, but I hope that the injuries that he has now are all he gets and nothing more," he said.

Boston Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli sat in on the NHL hearing to decide Paille's fate and also spoke to the media post-practice.

"Obviously, we are right at the forefront of this whole concussion, head-shot thing and a big proponent of what the leage is trying to do," said Chiarelli. "I support that."

However, the Bruins general manager wasn't sure if the punishment fit the crime.

"I thought it was a little stiff," he said. "We felt that [Paille] tried to square up fact, if you look at the footage, he was two or three fee ahead of the player then circled back.

"Whether the hit was in that danger zone, that lateral blind spot -- it probably was.

"But I really felt that [Paille] tried to circle back and get square to [Sawada] and get in front of him," he said.

Bruins Head Coach Claude Julien found himself on the opposite side of queries about a questionable hit and, like Chiarelli, talked about the strides that the NHL has made in the realm of blindside hits or head-shots.

"Again, it's a very touchy question," said Julien. "I think we are all very supportive of the new rule that has come in and at the same time you want to support your player.

"At the end of the day you try to respect what the league is trying to do."

However, Julien also talked about the responsibilty of those players who are going to be hit.

"Whether it's playing with your head down or being by the board and seeing you are going to get hit and turning your back -- or whatever the case may be -- I think if the players start taking the responsibility it's going to minimize a lot of these things," said Julien. "I know if I was a player I wouldn't want to have a concussion and I would try to avoid putting myself in those situations."

Julien, however, reitterated his support of the NHL's efforts in the veign of dangerous hits.

"We are 100-percent behind the rule," said Julien. "The blindsided hits, there's no place for that."
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