Rangers captain Chris Drury has missed a lot of time this year with different injuries. He’s broken his hand twice and has been out of the lineup since February 3 with a knee injury. He”ll make his return today against New Jersey, however, in what could prove to be the Rangers final game of the season.
When Drury’s played this year he’s not been the guy we remember from the past with Buffalo and Colorado. In 23 games this season he has zero goals and four assists. His role today won’t be symbolic as he’ll be out there to win faceoffs and likely play on the fourth line with shootout specialists Mats Zuccarello and Erik Christensen.
As Rangers captain, Drury has had a bit of a rough go of it from the fans. With a huge contract comes huge expectations and after signing with the Rangers after huge seasons in Buffalo, fans were expecting Drury to bring those big numbers over with him. The offense never really came and the fans have soured on him to the point where many fans want to see Ryan Callahan usurp him as team captain sooner than not.
The ironic twist here is that Drury has been working his tail off even harder to get back in the lineup now that Callahan is out with a broken ankle. Drury can do his part to silence his naysayers today if he helps lead the Rangers to a win over New Jersey and help put the Rangers back in the playoffs. It’s an uphill climb for New York today, but Drury can help make himself a sort of legend if he can pull that off.
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.