Sami Salo: Tough guy of the year?


“Balls of Steel!!”

That was the cheer that rang out last night
at GM Place as Sami Salo took the ice. While the Canucks ultimately lost
the game and the series, seeing the courage and the toughness on
display by Salo was inspiring.

Especially when you consider
what he went through just to play last night:

“The doctors gave me a couple of shots before the game. It was pretty
good,” he said of the testicle that came just short of being diagnosed
as ruptured, after a blocked shot slipped under his protective cup in
Game 5.

“The general was fine,” he joked. “The first battalion was down.”

That’s right, he was given a couple of shots in the direct area of
the injury

Salo played nearly 20 minutes of ice time, and says he wasn’t limited
by by the injury. Players for both teams were in awe of his toughness,
including Chicago’s Adam Burish stating that he would try and rub up on
Salo during the game in the hopes he can have some of that toughness
transfer over.

Shane O’Brien sums up the situation perfectly, as only he can:

“He came off, he wasn’t bleeding or anything,” said O’Brien, who
Salo must be OK. “But Sami couldn’t move for the whole intermission. He
was in tremendous pain. I’d rather take it off the face.”

Jason Demers tweets #FreeTorres, gets mocked

Los Angeles Kings v San Jose Sharks - Game One

Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.

We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.

It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”

Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)

Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.

So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”

… You get the idea.

The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.

The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.

Bruins list Chara on IR, for now

Zdeno Chara

Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.

It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.

The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.

As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.

Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?

The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.

This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.