Capitals sign Matt Hendricks to a two-year extension

Seizing an opportunity when it’s presented to you can be what makes you an everyday NHL starter and say a guy like the recently waived Nikolay Zherdev. For Washington’s Matt Hendricks after being let go by the Colorado Avalanche, getting a shot to make a name for himself in Washington was an opportunity he couldn’t pass up and he’s made the most of it turning into the Caps main energy line guy and feisty fighter.

That’s why the news today that the Caps signed Hendricks to a two-year extension isn’t the least bit surprising. Hendricks is having his best season as a pro in his third year in the league with seven goals and 12 assists. His 84 penalty minutes are also a career high as is his ice time average of over 11 minutes a game. Coach Bruce Boudreau has been very comfortable with playing him this season and the extra effort he puts into playing each shift has made him a bit of a cult hero in D.C. There’s also that whole thing from HBO’s 24/7 that had him showing off his gruesome eye injury that endeared him to hockey fans everywhere.

The Washington Post’s Katie Carrera confirms that the extension is two years for $1.6 million, a cap hit of $800,000 per year. The Caps have got themselves a young energy line guy locked up for two more seasons now and if they can figure out a way to get their top players to give as much effort as Hendricks puts out in his time on the ice, the Caps might be close to unbeatable. Here’s to hoping that hard work rubs off on the rest of the room to help the Caps score some more goals heading into the playoffs.

Dropping like flies: Johnson, Killorn hurt in Bolts’ exhibition

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One
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You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.

We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.

“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.

These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.

Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.

It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.

Raffi Torres gets match penalty for being Raffi Torres

Raffi Torres

With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.

It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.

Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:

It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).

As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.

Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:

This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.

Update: Bullet dodged?