Rob Niedermayer wants to return to New Jersey Devils; What about his brother Scott?

robnied.jpgRob Niedermayer might not be anywhere near as talented as his brother Scott, but he’s been a player who can play a specialized role on a hockey team. As Earl Sleek of Battle of California said of Rob when he was a member of Anaheim Ducks, he’s an “All-Star” in tight areas – particularly against the boards.

If Tom Gulitti of the Fire & Ice blog’s report is correct, Rob Niedermayer is hoping to return to the New Jersey Devils for another season after briefly pondering retirement.

After the Devils were eliminated from the playoffs, Niedermayer, 35, said he wanted to take some time to “evaluate what I want to do going forward” as far as playing again or retiriing. After doing that, Niedermayer decided he does not want to retire and he’s already had some talks with general manager Lou Lamoriello about re-signing with the Devils.

“He definitely wants to play,” Epp told me. “He’s ready to go and we’ve had a couple of conversations with Lou. I guess Lou’s biggest challenge right now is finding a coach and getting that in order and then go at it from there.”

Niedermayer is scheduled to become an unresricted free agent on July 1 after signing a one-year, $1 million contract with the Devils on Sept. 25-just eight days before the team’s regular season opener. He seems to be in the same boat as the Devils’ other potential free agents, however, waiting for Lamoriello to pick a coach before he moves on to trying to re-sign players before July 1.

When you consider the fact that the Devils are potentially looking to trade for Tomas Kaberle, might they wonder if Scott Niedermayer would want to play on the same team as his brother Rob – and reunite with the team he played so many seasons with – again? Now, that would be an intriguing storyline, although I get the feeling that it’s the Ducks or retirement for the smooth-skating defenseman.

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.