LOS ANGELES -- However long their series with the Los Angeles Kings lasts, Raffi Torres won't be in the Sharks lineup.

The NHL suspended Torres for the duration of the series before Thursday's 4-3 Sharks Game 2 loss, saying that when the San Jose left wing hit Kings center Jarret Stoll late in the second period of Game 1, the head was the principal point of contact even though a "glancing blow" to the shoulder preceded it.

In his ruling, NHL chief disciplinarian Brendan Shanahan also cited the fact Stoll was injured on the play and that Torres has been suspended three previous times. Both Torres and Sharks general manager had flown to New York City for an in-person hearing to plead San Jose's case.

Both Torres and Wilson flew directly to San Jose where the series continues Saturday at HP Pavilion and were not available for comment. There is an appeal process established in the league's collective bargaining agreement, but the time frame could put off any ruling until after the series concludes.

Sharks Coach Todd McLellan offered a measured response after Thursday's loss.

"It really doesn't matter what Todd McLellan thinks or anybody else thinks now because it's been dealt with and we have Game 3 we now move ahead and prepare for without Raffi," the coach said. "But Raffi has our full support as a player that's worked hard to change his game. Do I think that was anywhere near any of the other hits that he's had in his career? Absolutely not."

The Sharks acquired Torres from the Phoenix Coyotes at the trade deadline and his arrival coincided with the team's turnaround late in the season that secured a playoff spot and first-round sweep of Vancouver.

After being suspended for what amounted to 21 games a year ago for a vicious elbow to the head of Chicago Blackhawks forward Marian Hossa, Torres had made a strong effort to change his style of play while with the Coyotes. He had avoided any supplemental discipline all season, spending only 13 minutes in the penalty box.

But at 19:02 of the second period Tuesday night, he hit Stoll as the Kings center lowered his body to place the puck on the ice. Stoll did not return and sat out Game 2 as well. The Kings have not disclosed any specific information, but the Los Angeles Times has reported it as a likely concussion that will cause Stoll to miss at least four games.

Shanahan acknowledged that Torres neither leapt into the hit or raised his elbow. Still, the former player had a problem with the contact.

"Torres approaches from the high slot as Stoll is heading up ice and tries to play a bouncing puck," Shanahan said in a video released by the league. "Rather than hit Stoll through the core of his body, Torres takes a route that makes Stoll's head the principal point of contact.

"If he chooses to attempt a hit such as that," Shanahan continued, "Torres must take a route that ensures he hits through the core of the body and does not make the head the principal point of contact."

  • Patrick Marleau's goal in the second period ended a goal drought of 89:47 against the Kings and goalie Jonathan Quick. Including carryover time from his previous series against the St. Louis Blues, it had been 125:8 since Quick was scored on.

    For more on the Sharks, see David Pollak's Working the Corners blog at blogs.mercurynews.com/sharks. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/PollakOnSharks.