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Zdeno Chara Avoids Punishment From NHL For Hit On Max Pacioretty

The NHL has decided not to suspend or fine the Bruins' Zdeno Chara following Tuesday night's hit that left the Canadiens' Max Pacioretty with a serious concussion and a fracture of the fourth cervical vertebrae. The announcement from the league came Wednesday afternoon and was made by NHL Senior VP of Hockey Operations Mike Murphy:

"After a thorough review of the video I can find no basis to impose supplemental discipline. This hit resulted from a play that evolved and then happened very quickly -- with both players skating in the same direction and with Chara attempting to angle his opponent into the boards. I could not find any evidence to suggest that, beyond this being a correct call for interference, that Chara targeted the head of his opponent, left his feet or delivered the check in any other manner that could be deemed to be dangerous.

"This was a hockey play that resulted in an injury because of the player colliding with the stanchion and then the ice surface. In reviewing this play, I also took into consideration that Chara has not been involved in a supplemental discipline incident during his 13-year NHL career."

After Wednesday's practice Chara briefly spoke with reporters:

"It's been hard," Chara said. "Obviously I feel bad about what happened. I am trying to make strong hockey plays and play hard. It's very unfortunate that a player got hurt and had to leave the game. It is in my mind."

Chara added that he plans to reach out to Pacioretty, who remains hospitalized. 

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