Much like Jamie Benn’s Goal of the Night, it wasn’t easy to choose Marc-Andre Fleury’s brilliant save over the other choices from Friday.
The closest competitor was Miikka Kiprusoff. The Calgary Flames goalie stared down defeat during two different occasions last night: one on a disallowed goal because of a Chris Pronger penalty and the other time by somehow making a ludicrous stick save on talented Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen. The fact that it was at such a crucial time added to its brilliance.
Fleury’s counterpart for the night – embattled yet improving Ottawa Senators goalie Pascal Leclaire – also made a genius stop too. He flashed the glove to keep Sidney Crosby behind Steve Stamkos in the goal scoring race.
Ultimately, though, it came down to the combination of Fleury’s fluorescent flashiness, the fact that his opponent got plenty of air under the puck and the fact that the Penguins goalie put together such a great performance overall.
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.