Mike Green, Wayne Simmonds

Mike Green says he’s “OK” to start the second round of playoffs

When Capitals defenseman Mike Green left Game 5 against New York after taking a puck off his head from the stick of Matt Gilroy, Capitals fans were immediately worried about how Green would respond to that. After all, Green was fairly recently back from missing over 20 games with a concussion that put his playoff availability in doubt.

Today, Green spoke with reporters to let everyone know just how he was doing and Caps fans should be feeling pretty good about it.

CSN Washington’s Ben Raby caught up with Green to get his take on how he’s feeling and what it’s like to take a puck in the head twice.

“They make good helmets and this time it hit me in the helmet,” Green said, sporting a bruise on the left side of his face. “I’m OK, so that’s all that matters.”

Green blocked a Brooks Orpik slap shot Feb. 6 at Verizon Center and missed the final 20 games of the regular season with a concussion and 26 of the final 28 games overall. Green says he has not felt any concussion-like symptoms since Saturday.

“No, not at all,” Green said. “The first one was a lot different than this one. Right away, I knew with the first one [that something was wrong]. This one, I got up right away. Other than it stinging a little bit, I was fine.”

That’s overly positive as far as the injury concern goes for Green. With the amount of time off the Caps have had until the start of the second round, it’s a bonus for them to get the free time off so Green can get healthy. With Dennis Wideman still working his way back to health and Tom Poti still out, losing Green for any amount of time would be rough going. Green played great against the Rangers notching five points in the series. If Green says he’s good to go, that helps but it’s ultimately up to the doctors.

Jason Demers tweets #FreeTorres, gets mocked

Los Angeles Kings v San Jose Sharks - Game One

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.

Bruins list Chara on IR, for now

Zdeno Chara

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.