For the night’s first nine games, click here.
Chicago 5, Edmonton 0
It seems like things are going back to normal in the NHL. The Red Wings dominated the Blues, the Penguins are winning again, the Capitals are the best team in the East and the bad teams are bad again. Chicago did its part by shutting down the back-to-reality Edmonton Oilers, who are now on a five game losing streak. Jonathan Toews scored a natural hat trick while Marty Turco only needed 18 saves to earn a shutout.
Phoenix 3, Calgary 1
Speaking of things going back to normal, Ilya Bryzgalov had an amazing game tonight, stopping 39 out of 40 shots to help the rising Coyotes beat the falling Flames. Miikka Kiprusoff wasn’t half-bad either, stopping 28 out of 30 shots in a losing effort. Wojtek Wolski scored the best goal of the game and seems like he’s found a solid home in Phoenix.
Columbus 5, Los Angeles 3
Well, I cannot say I really saw this one coming. The Kings lost their first home game of the season against the Blue Jackets, although Columbus is awfully scrappy; they’re a sturdy 5-1 on the road after beating the Kings. Steve Mason outplayed Jonathan Bernier in this one, allowing three goals on 36 shots while Bernier allowed four on 25.
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.
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 CSNNE.com’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.