With the Vancouver Canucks adding a substantial amount of cash to their already jam-packed blueline in the form of Keith Ballard and Dan Hamhuis this off-season, the question seemed to be: who needs to go?
That problem might solve itself thanks to a very … mysterious off-season injury. The Canucks are about $3.15 million above the salary cap with 23 players committed (according to CapGeek.com), but reports indicate that Sami Salo and his $3.5 million cap hit could very well be eligible for the long term injury reserve.
Taking Salo’s $3.5 million off the Canucks cap would put the team under by about $350K, not quite enough for a minimum wage player. Then again, Gillis can move some salary around at the team’s lower levels or just settle for a 22-man roster instead of the 23 player maximum.
Either way, it’s a lot easier than trying to find a home for useful but injury prone defenseman Kevin Bieksa, the target of more than a few trade rumors this summer. Time will tell if Vancouver deserves all of their Stanley Cup hype, but Salo’s loss might just be the Canucks’ gain.
Report: Islanders cut first-rounder Barzal from camp
It seems Mathew Barzal has played in his last game in a New York Islanders’ uniform for a little while.
Barzal took part in the Islanders’ preseason finale against the Washington Capitals on Sunday, but after that contest the Islanders decided to return him to WHL Seattle, per Newsday’s Arthur Staple.
He was taken with the 16th overall pick in 2015 NHL Entry Draft. That selection was well-traveled as it originally belonged to the Pittsburgh Penguins, but was involved in the David Perron trade and then moved to the Islanders as part of Edmonton’s deal to get Griffin Reinhart.
Barzal is noteworthy for his skill and speed, but he may have slipped in the draft due to a knee injury he sustained during the 2014-15 campaign.
The Islanders also reassigned Kirill Petrov, Kevin Czuczman, Scott Mayfield, and Adam Pelech to the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers.
Torres offered in-person hearing, potentially setting up long suspension
The 33-year-old forward that has become known primarily for his controversial hits has once again put himself in the sights of the NHL’s Department of Players Safety. They confirmed that he was offered an in-person hearing following his hit on Jakub Silfverberg Saturday night. He declined the opportunity to meet with them face-to-face, but the offer itself is an important detail because it gives the league the option to suspend him for more than five games.
It certainly seems like the stage is set for a lengthy suspension. While Torres is not considered a repeat offender as his last suspension came more than 18 months ago, the NHL still retains the right to consider his history when deciding on this matter.
Among other incidents, he was once was banned from 25 games for his hit on Marian Hossa in 2012, although it was later reduced to 21 contests after an appeal. The NHL found that Torres was guilty of breaking three rules for that hit; namely interference, charging, and illegally hitting the head. The NHL is reviewing Torres’ latest incident for the same three violations.