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Lightning sends Roy home

NEWARK, N.J. — It will be another couple of days before we know how deep Andre Roy is in the Lightning's doghouse.

The volatile left wing was sent home before Friday's game with the Devils, a day after his antics on the bench during a 3-2 loss to the Flyers.

Roy also will miss Sunday's game in Columbus and on Monday will meet with general manager Jay Feaster.

"I felt it would be best for the team and Andre if he went back to Tampa and we separated him from the team for the next few days," Feaster said. "I will meet with Andre … and we will determine any subsequent course of action at that time."

Roy was benched by coach John Tortorella after an early second-period fight with Philadelphia's Riley Cote, who dropped Roy with a big left hand. That avenged Roy's first-period TKO of Cote after nine straight lefts.

Late in the third period, Roy stood on the bench and jawed with Cote. He pointed fingers, made throat-slitting gestures and yelled, "You're (expletive) dead."

Tortorella grabbed Roy by the shoulders, got in his face and shoved him into his seat.

"I'm not talking about Andre," Tortorella said Friday. "I'm not going to talk about something, really, I don't care about versus a team that I want to try to see win a hockey game. So you can go to someone else with that."

The incident had some of the same flavor as one in February, when the team suspended Roy for three games for having words with Tortorella after he fought Florida's Branislav Mezei then jawed with him on the bench.

In April 2003, Roy was left home for Games 3 and 4 of the East quarterfinal in Washington after being thrown off the bench during Game 2 for taking a penalty after a play was whistled dead.

Roy has been suspended several times by the league, including 13 games in 2001-02 for wrestling with officials after a fight with the Rangers' Sandy McCarthy.

He was not suspended for Thursday's incident.

Roy no doubt was embarrassed losing to Cote and upset the one-punch knockdown repeatedly was shown on the Wachovia Center scoreboard. He also was likely taking heat from the Flyers.

Showing the punchout, which prompted roars from the crowd, seems in violation of the NHL's game-day operations guidelines.

Spokesman Frank Brown said in an e-mail, "League policy prohibits the use of scoreboards for replays that are provocative or present the opposition in an unfavorable light."

But the policy actually goes further, banning in-game replays of fights and adding, "Failure to conform to NHL policy will result in a fine to the home club."

Brown did not respond when asked if the league was investigating, and Shawn Tilger, the Flyers' senior vice president of business operations, said, "Our instant replays from (Thursday) night's game were no different from the replays we use in any other game."

For Tortorella, the point was moot: "Why are we even looking up at the scoreboard? It's a 2-2 game.

"That has nothing to do with a team that's 1-6-1 involved with maybe winning a game."

Damian Cristodero can be reached at cristodero@sptimes.com.

Lightning sends Roy home 03/07/08 [Last modified: Friday, March 7, 2008 11:09pm]
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