It almost always feels great to see justice served.
There were other impressive goals from November 29-December 5, but from the first time I saw Pavel Datsyuk deke his way through San Jose Sharks defensemen with his characteristic grace, I knew he was the odds-on favorite to take home this imaginary prize.
In a league full of well-trained players and coaches who depend on video tutelage, it’s truly amazing to see a player beat two or more players plus a goalie. Even some of the most talented hockey players cannot accomplish that task, but there really isn’t ever a safe time to take on Datsyuk.
His two-way play brings him into the “best player in the world” discussion even if his goal and assist numbers trail the very elite in the NHL, but it’s those sublime sequences of stickhandling that make him a true delight. Here are the poll results.
(click to enlarge.)
Enough of my jibber jabber, enjoy the video of Datsyuk’s goal of the week worthy efforts.
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.