Rob Blake expect to announce his retirement on Friday

Blake2.jpgThere’s been speculation this was coming ever since last week, but
with the Stanley Cup finals now over we have the formal announcement
coming: Rob Blake will retire, announcing his retirement at a 11 a.m.
press conference on Friday morning.

David Pollack at the San Jose Mercury News:

Since the only real suspense surrounding Blake is whether he’ll
immediately slide into a front-office job someplace or take some time to
decompress, the logical talking point then becomes who will succeed the
40-year-old defenseman as Sharks’ captain.  The obvious co-favorites
for the ‘C’ at this point would have to be Dan Boyle or  Joe Pavelski,
but don’t look for any answers this Friday.

Pollack goes on to say that he doesn’t expect for the next captain to
be announced right away.

It was hoped that Blake would provide the same presence on  the San
Jose Sharks blueline that Chris Pronger did for the Flyers, yet was
never able to help the team get over that hump and into the Cup finals.

was first drafted by the Los Angeles Kings in 1988 and spent 12 seasons
in LA before moving onto Colorado via a midseason trade in 2000. He
spent five seasons with the Avalanche, winning a Stanley Cup in 2001
before heading back to Los Angeles in 2006.

Blake will finish his
career with 240 goals, 537 assists and 777 career points in 1,270 games
in the NHL.

Dropping like flies: Johnson, Killorn hurt in Bolts’ exhibition

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One
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You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.

We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.

“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.

These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.

Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.

It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.

Raffi Torres gets match penalty for being Raffi Torres

Raffi Torres

With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.

It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.

Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:

It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).

As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.

Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:

This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.

Update: All that’s been announced about Silfverberg is that he’s under evaluation and will not return.