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Tinordi suspension caught the Coyotes ‘by surprise’

Anaheim Ducks v Arizona Coyotes

GLENDALE, AZ - MARCH 03: Ryan Garbutt #16 of the Anaheim Ducks skates with the puck ahead of Jarred Tinordi #28 of the Arizona Coyotes during the third period of the NHL game at Gila River Arena on March 3, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. The Ducks defeated the Coyotes 5-1. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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Coyotes coach Dave Tippett told reporters today in Vancouver that Jarred Tinordi’s 20-game suspension for taking a banned substance “caught us by surprise.”

Tippett also said, according to The Province newspaper, that “it was something that’s been going on since before he got to our team.”

In other words, it was “going on” when Tinordi was still a member of the Montreal Canadiens, before he was dealt to Arizona in January as part of the much-discussed John Scott trade.

Which is pretty interesting when you recall how Habs GM Marc Bergevin explained the deal at the time.

“I have a reason that I can’t really tell you why,” said Bergevin, “but if I could, you would probably understand.”

It was widely assumed that Bergevin was referring to Scott’s inclusion in the deal -- a deal that many saw as a way for the NHL to keep the big enforcer out of the All-Star Game.

What many are wondering now is whether Bergevin was actually referring to Tinordi’s positive test result.

The Coyotes, according to the Arizona Republic’s Sarah McLellan, say that neither team knew:

And according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman, the test results would have had to stay private anyway.

We’ll see if Bergevin has anything to add the next time he speaks with reporters.