SAN JOSE -- The NHL has fined the Sharks $100,000 for general manager Doug Wilson's statement that criticized the series-long suspension of forward Raffi Torres for a hit that injured Los Angeles Kings center Jarret Stoll in Game 1.
The league said Saturday that $25,000 of that fine is for violating rules that ban any comment on a disciplinary decision during the 48-hour period in which it can be appealed. The other $75,000 is for the "inappropriate nature of the comments."
A Sharks spokesman said the team would not comment on the fine.
The 48-hour ban was spelled out in a memorandum issued to all clubs at the start of the lockout-delayed 2013 season, according to an NHL news release. In his statement, Wilson said Torres would not be appealing the decision, but apparently that was not enough to escape the penalty.
NHL director of public safety Brendan Shanahan ruled Thursday that the Torres hit violated the league rule that prohibits targeting the head. Factoring in Torres' previous three suspensions, Shanahan ruled Torres could not play this the rest of this second-round series.
On Friday, Wilson issued a statement detailing his objections to Shanahan's interpretation of Rule 48.1 that addresses head shots and assessment of the Torres hit.
"The Sharks organization fully supports the NHL in its efforts to remove illegal and dangerous hits from the game," Wilson said, "but we strongly disagree with the NHL's decision to suspend Raffi Torres."
Later in the statement, Wilson added: "Although it's unfortunate that Jarret was injured on the play, we feel this decision is grossly unfair to Raffi, his teammates and our fans."
Kearns, who turned 32 on May 12, played in the Sharks' first two games against the Kings and averaged 12 shifts and 6:21 of ice time.
"I have to be smart and get pucks out and get pucks in, get some hits," Kearns said Saturday morning. "I feel I can be a difference maker if given the opportunity. That's what I want to focus on."
The retired Thornton was in town to attend a wedding in addition to taking in a playoff game. Now 42, he played his final two seasons with the Kings but let his loyalties be known as far as the game he was returning to see later.
"Hope to see a big home victory tonight," he said.