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Zac Rinaldo voted dirtiest, Brad Marchand and Zdeno Chara voted biggest pains in National Post NHL player poll 03.29.16 at 1:54 pm ET
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Brad Marchand

Brad Marchand

The National Post polled both NHL players and fans on a number of NHL-related topics recently, ranging from who they felt would win the Stanley Cup to which Canadian cities in the league they liked and disliked.

The Bruins were well-represented in the responses from players. On the subject of who was the “biggest pain in the ass to play against,” Zdeno Chara and Brad Marchand tied for the most votes, as Chara, Marchand, Corey Perrt and Ryan Kesler each received 11 percent of the votes. Three-time Selke winner Patrice Bergeron got nine percent of the votes.

As one might have expected, the Bruins were also popular in the dirtiest player vote, as nearly half of the votes cast went to players in the Boston organization. Zac Rinaldo, who is currently playing in Providence but will serve a five-game suspension when he returns to the NHL, got 25 percent of the votes. Just behind him was Marchand at 22 percent. Marchand and Rinaldo tied for the most votes in last year’s poll.

Former Bruin Phil Kessel was voted the most overrated player in the NHL, getting 29 percent of the votes. To see the complete results as well as the fan vote, click here.

National Post graphic

National Post graphic

Read More: Brad Marchand, Zac Rinaldo, Zdeno Chara,
Update: Zac Rinaldo suspended 5 games in AHL 03.07.16 at 1:24 am ET
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If and when Zac Rinaldo makes it back up to the NHL, he will begin by serving his five games due to his hit on Cedric Paquette. In the meantime, he’s still in the AHL.

And also suspended.

Playing in his first game for Providence on Friday, Rinaldo was given a match penalty for intent to injure on a hit on Bridgeport defenseman Kane Lafranchise in a P-Bruins’ 4-3 loss. That carries with it an automatic indefinite suspension pending league review, and the league announced Monday that Rinaldo would be given a five-game ban. Joe McDonald of ESPN was the first to report Rinaldo’s AHL suspension.

It has not been a good week-plus for Rinaldo, who was placed on waivers last Sunday, committed his suspendable hit against the Lightning later that night and was sent to Providence Monday, the same day that his five-game ban was given by the league.

It is unclear whether Rinaldo will regain his spot on Boston’s roster this season. For the time being, it appears the Bruins are set on a fourth line of Noel Acciari between Landon Ferraro and Brett Connolly. Tyler Randell is the team’s extra forward.

The Bruins sent a 2017 third-round pick to Philadelphia this summer in what was considered a head-scratcher of a deal at the time. In 52 games for Boston this season, Rinaldo has one goal and two assists for three points and 83 penalty minutes.

Here is video of the hit on Lafranchise, per Weekend at Bergy’s:

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Loui Eriksson practices; Zac Rinaldo has hearing for hit, assigned to Providence 02.29.16 at 11:06 am ET
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Loui Eriksson

Loui Eriksson

WILMINGTON — With hours to go until the 3 p.m. trade deadline, Bruins forward Loui Eriksson participated in Monday’s practice at Ristuccia Arena.

The Bruins are still determining whether to trade Eriksson, make a last-ditch effort to sign him to a contract extension or potentially keep him past the deadline without a new contract inked. Both sides have indicated that the possibility of the B’s keeping Eriksson unsigned is real, though the guess here is that it’s a situation Boston would like to avoid.

After sending him to Providence for a two-game conditioning loan, the B’s brought Tyler Randell back up for Monday’s practice. Zac Rinaldo, who remains on waivers until noon, did not practice and was the only absence. Should he go unclaimed, the Bruins can either keep him on their roster or send him to Providence. (Update: Rinaldo has been sent to Providence, according to the AHL transactions page.)

The NHL Department of Player Safety announced Monday that Rinaldo would have a hearing for his illegal check to the head of Cedric Paquette in Sunday’s loss to the Lightning. Rinaldo has not been suspended as a member of the Bruins, though he came to Boston this summer having been suspended a total of 14 games over the course of his Flyers career.

Max Talbot, who cleared waivers Saturday, remains on the NHL roster and was on for the start of Monday’s skate, though he left the ice just a few minutes into the practice.

Read More: Loui Eriksson, Max Talbot, Zac Rinaldo,
Bruins place Zac Rinaldo on waivers 02.28.16 at 1:32 pm ET
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Zac Rinaldo

Zac Rinaldo

According to TSN’s Bob McKenzie, the Bruins placed forward Zac Rinaldo on waivers Sunday. Max Talbot, who was waived Saturday, has cleared.

Rinaldo is in his first season with the Bruins, as it was just this summer that the B’s traded a 2017 third-round pick to the Flyers for his services. In 51 games this season, Rinaldo has one goal and two assists for Boston. The 25-year-old is second on the B’s in penalty minutes with 81, which is one behind Brad Marchand.

If Rinaldo clears waivers on Monday, he can be sent to Providence in order to open up another spot on Boston’s NHL roster. The Bruins currently have 14 forwards on their NHL roster, though Tyler Randell is currently in Providence on a conditioning loan. That leaves the B’s with 13 forwards available for Sunday’s game against the Lightning, a group that includes both Talbot and Rinaldo.

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Zac Rinaldo says referee injured him 12.21.15 at 12:50 pm ET
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WILMINGTON — Zac Rinaldo says that he is “ready to play” after practicing with the Bruins Monday. Rinaldo, who has been on injured reserve and missed the last three games with an upper-body injury suffered against the Oilers last Monday, also revealed the interesting nature in which the injury occurred.

Though it appeared he might have tweaked something during a first-period fight with Oilers forward Matt Hendricks, Rinaldo said that he was actually injured by a referee after the fight.

“It was after the fight against Hendricks,” Rinaldo said. “The ref jumped on me as I was coming up and he put me down a little too rough, to be honest. That was that.”

Video of the fight did not capture which ref was responsible, but Rinaldo said that the official was trying to hold Rinaldo down to prevent him from getting back up. Rinaldo said that as he tried to get up, the official “cranked” him down “pretty hard.”

Rinaldo was matter-of-fact about the ordeal, but clearly wasn’€™t happy with the result.

“It’€™s unfortunate,” he said. “It was after the fight, too, so there was no need to use that much force like the ref did. I don’€™t know. You can’€™t really give the ref [guff].”

Added Rinaldo: “When the refs use their force after you just fought for 30 seconds, a minute, it’€™s the last thing you want to deal with, is a ref using all his strength and all of his — I don’€™t know what you want to call it — just to stop you from doing anything.”

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Zac Rinaldo not suspended for hit on Sean Couturier 10.22.15 at 4:37 pm ET
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Bruins forward Zac Rinaldo will not be given any supplemental discipline for his hit on Flyers forward Sean Couturier, the Department of Player Safety announced Thursday.

Rinaldo was given a charging major and game misconduct for the hit, which occurred late in the first period of Philadelphia’€™s 5-4 overtime win over the B’€™s. Though Rinaldo is considered a repeat offender because he’€™s been suspended within the last 18 months, such status is only applied to plays deemed to be suspendable in a vacuum. Had Rinaldo’€™s hit been suspendable in the league’€™s eyes, his punishment would have been steeper than that of a first-time offender.

The video explaining the league’€™s decision outlines that Rinaldo does not elbow Couturier, commit interference or target the head. The video also says that Rinaldo did not launch into the hit or leave his feet.

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Pierre McGuire on OM&F: Zac Rinaldo hit on Sean Couturier was dirty at 1:53 pm ET
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Pierre McGuire

Pierre McGuire

NBC Sports NHL analyst Pierre McGuire made his weekly appearance on Ordway, Merloni and Fauria on Thursday to look back at the Bruins’ overtime loss to the Flyers Wednesday night. To hear the interview, go to the OM&F audio on demand page.

During the game Bruins forward Zac Rinaldo hit Flyers forward Sean Couturier from behind against the boards at the end of the first period. He was given a game misconduct for the hit. McGuire said it was a dirty play.

“It’s against a defenseless player,” McGuire said. “It’s against a guy who isn’t making a play on the puck. I didn’t like the play at all. I didn’t like it at all.”

“I like Zac Rinaldo as a guy, I really do,” he added. “I’ve gotten to know him over time watching him play junior hockey up in the Toronto area and he’s had to scratch and claw to make it to the professional level, especially at the NHL level. He always plays to the line and I didn’t like that last night. He went over the line last night. He really did.”

Although the Bruins blew a two-goal third period lead and lost 5-4 in overtime, McGuire said it wasn’t all bad for the home team.

“There were some very good things in that game last night for Boston, too. It wasn’t all doom and gloom,” McGuire said. “But, this is a much different team. This is a much different team that Bruins fans have become used to since about 2010.”

Tuukka Rask is 1-3-1 this season and McGuire noted how important it is to get the Bruins’ goaltender back on track.

“You need goaltending. There’s no question,” he said. “It is a very important part of the game and confidence is an issue. I know it was a great shot from Wayne Simmonds, that was Wayne Simmonds’ 101st goal in 290 games as a member of the Flyers last night. I can tell you this right now, if Tuukka is on the angle, that is high glove side from a right-hand shot coming down the left-hand side of the ice, that is a stoppable puck for a guy that is on the angle. He was off the angle. He was cheating short side and he got beat long side. He’s got to be more square and I think he would be the first person to tell you that.”

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