Aaron Rome, Nathan Horton

What a coincidence: Aaron Rome breaks hand while Nathan Horton returns to action


When last we saw Nathan Horton of the Boston Bruins, he was being stretchered off the ice during Game 3 of the Stanley Cup finals after suffering a brutal hit from Vancouver defenseman Aaron Rome. With just over three months since the incident, Horton was back on the ice for the first time since Game 3, suiting up against Montreal in a preseason game in Nova Scotia.

While Horton looked great in his return to the ice, the man who put him out of action, Aaron Rome, was, depending on your set of beliefs, dealing with a bit of karmic retribution at home against San Jose. Rome was knocked out of the game with a broken hand in the second period.

Rome’s shot to Horton in Game 3 of the finals arguably turned the tide of the series as the Bruins headed into Game 3 down 2-0 in the series. From the point Horton was knocked out of action, the Bruins owned the Canucks at every game in Boston beating the Canucks down in games that weren’t even close to competitive.

Vancouver losing Rome with a broken hand hurts their defensive depth and while they’ve got all their guys back this year, getting the season off on that note isn’t so hot. Meanwhile in Boston, Horton’s return helps solidify the Bruins’ top line with Horton teaming up with David Krejci and Milan Lucic to bring a physical scoring line to the ice every night.

The coincidence of seeing Horton returning and Rome going out of action on the same night isn’t lost here. It certainly makes us want to do a little “My Name Is Earl” work to go back and right any wrongs from the past that might come back to bite us in the rear end. At the very least, if there’s any believers in bad karma in the NHL, they might think twice about taking that pointless shot at a defenseless player. At the very least, they should fear Brendan Shanahan stepping in and getting his pound of flesh via suspension. Karma or Shanahan? You make the call.

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?