Flames injury woes continue; Moss and Kotalik out indefinitely

GYI0061889248-kotalikmoss-dalemacmillan-getty.jpgIf you thought the Calgary Flames’ off-season was difficult on the fans, then the preseason has been a vile curse from beyond the grave as far as injuries go. While the team has seen Olli Jokinen and Rene Bourque get a little banged up, Matthew Stajan separated his shoulder, Daymond Langkow continues to be out with a neck injury leftover from last season, and newly acquired free agent Ryan Stone has a knee injury. The Flames announced today that two more players have been added to their injured list and their return is listed as “indefinite.”

Forwards David Moss and Ales Kotalik join Stajan, Langkow, and Stone on the list and the situation in Calgary is getting to be more dire than hoped for. Moss injured his shoulder the other night against Edmonton and Kotalik injured his knee. The Flames aren’t exactly a deep team and all three of Stajan, Langkow, and Stone are centers. Moss had been getting tried out at center in the wake of all the injuries the team has seen and now you have to start wondering if center ice in Calgary is located above an unknown graveyard.

Who do the Flames have left at the center position? A now healthy Olli Jokinen, Mikael Backlund, Craig Conroy (who signed a league-minimum two-way deal), and Stefan Meyer. Conroy spent the last few seasons in Calgary so he’s not exactly out of his element there and Meyer has been a career minor leaguer.

If you’re wondering about the effects this will have on their salary cap, which they’re over at the moment, it comes as a saving grace to have these guys potentially set to give them some relief. Langkow, Kotalik, and Stajan all make $3 million or more against the cap. If any of those guys need to go on the long term injured reserve, the Flames cap problems will be resolved for a little while at least as the Flames are about $2.4 million over the cap.

(Photo: Dale MacMillan – Getty Images)

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    Hey, Tortorella called the Penguins whiners again

    John Tortorella

    Don’t forget, the Blue Jackets – Penguins rivalry isn’t just about the bitterness between Sidney Crosby and Brandon Dubinsky; John Tortorella can fuel the fire, too.

    Torts must not have been happy about the one-game suspension that Dubinsky received for cross-checking Crosby, as he channeled his vintage self in essentially calling the Penguins a bunch of whiners.

    You can see from this glorious Sportsnet video, Tortorella said: “Pittsburgh whines enough for the whole league.”

    (He also said the Blue Jackets weren’t going to whine by … whining. Good stuff.)

    As Puck Daddy notes, this isn’t the first time Torts claimed that the Penguins are whiners.

    Both the Blue Jackets and Penguins lost their games on Saturday, but clearly some eyes and ears were still focused on their last confrontation.

    In case you’re wondering, the two teams next face off in Pittsburgh on Dec. 21.


    Scary moment: Carlo Colaiacovo hospitalized with ‘dented trachea’


    Buffalo Sabres defenseman Carlo Colaiacovo has experienced plenty of bad injury luck in his winding career, but Saturday presented one of his worst scares.

    As you can see from the video above, Colaiacovo received a scary cross-check from Viktor Arvidsson of the Nashville Predators, who received a major penalty and game misconduct.

    Sabres head coach Dan Bylsma said that Colaiacovo was hospitalized with a “dented trachea” yet is OK, the Buffalo News’ John Vogl reports.

    Frightening stuff from an eventual 4-1 Sabres win.

    PHT will keep an eye out for additional updates regarding Colaiacovo’s health (and a possible suspension for Arvidsson).

    Comeback Kings: Gaborik pulls L.A. past Kane, Blackhawks

    Jake Muzzin, Scott Darling

    Patrick Kane set an American scoring record, and added another assist to make it more impressive, but the Los Angeles Kings just wouldn’t be denied.

    In the end, Marian Gaborik‘s big night meant more than Kane’s; he scored the tying and then overtime game-winner, both assisted by Anze Kopitar, for a rousing 4-3 overtime Kings win.

    Gaborik’s first goal:

    And here’s video of the OT-GWG:

    Noticing a theme tonight? Yeah, it’s been an evening in which it’s dangerous to assume a lead would stand.

    With that, the Kings stick to the No. 1 spot in the Pacific Division, but Chicago shouldn’t feel all bad. The Blackhawks were able to piece together a decent run during their dreaded “circus trip.”

    Patrick Kane’s streak hits 19 games, setting a new American record


    When it comes to point streaks for U.S.-born NHL players, Patrick Kane now stands alone.

    With a power-play goal early in Saturday’s Blackhawks – Kings game, Kane extended his streak to 19 games, breaking a tie with Phil Kessel and Eddie Olczyk (who finished with at least a point in 18 straight).

    As of this writing, Kane has 11 goals and 19 assists during this 19-game streak. He also leads the NHL in scoring.

    Bobby Hull’s 21-game point streak stands as the Chicago Blackhawks’ overall team record, by the way.