The Toronto Maple Leafs have put James Reimer on injured reserve with “concussion like symptoms.” The Leafs, who will now ride with a guy named The Monster in net, put their young netminder on IR retroactively to last Saturday when he initially suffered the injury.
The good news is that the Leafs have jumped out to a 5-2-1 start that has them sitting atop of the Northeast Division. The team has ridden the hot start of guys like Phil Kessel, Joffrey Lupul, and Dion Phaneuf. But as we saw last season, the Leafs are a different team when they can get decent goaltending. With Reimer officially on the shelf, we’ll see if Toronto can keep up their hot start.
Paging Jonas Gustavsson.
Here’s the scary part for the Leafs. The coaching staff said that he was 100% during yesterday’s practice; but he didn’t feel well after practice. It sounds like he hasn’t recovered in the day since as he was put on IR. Since the roster move is retroactive, Reimer will not be available to pay against the Penguins on Saturday night either. Do you think James Neal is smiling right now?
Toronto has to hope that Reimer’s “concussion like symptoms” are minor and don’t linger like they have for so many other players recently. Look no further than Anaheim’s net to know that head problems for a goaltender can hang over a team for months—it’s something the Maple Leafs wouldn’t be able to overcome.
We’ll know by this weekend if the organization is erring on the side of caution or if this is something fans should really start to worry about. Hey, worst case scenario, we hear that Marty Turco is still available.
Last night in Los Angeles, Kings forward Milan Lucic received a match penalty after skating the entire width of the ice to give San Jose’s Logan Couture a two-hand shove to the face.
Lucic didn’t hurt Couture, who had caught Lucic with an open-ice hit that Lucic didn’t like. Couture’s smiling, mocking face was good evidence that the Sharks’ forward was going to be OK.
This morning, Lucic was still in disbelief that he was penalized so harshly.
“I didn’t cross any line,” Lucic said, per Rich Hammond of the O.C. Register. “Believe me, if my intentions were to hurt him, I would have hurt him.”
While Lucic knew he deserved a penalty, he said after the game that he didn’t “know why it was called a match penalty.” His coach, Darryl Sutter, agreed, calling it “a borderline even roughing penalty.”
And though former NHL referee Kerry Fraser believes a match penalty was indeed warranted, Lucic said this morning that he hasn’t heard from the NHL about any possible supplemental discipline.
Nor for that matter has Dustin Brown, after his high hit on Couture in the first period.
In conclusion, it’s good to have hockey back.
Related: Sutter says Kings weren’t ‘interested’ in checking the Sharks
A statement from Raffi Torres:
“I accept the 41-game suspension handed down to me by the NHL’s Department of Player Safety. I worked extremely hard over the last two years following reconstructive knee surgery to resume my NHL career, and this is the last thing I wanted to happen. I am disappointed I have put myself in a position to be suspended again. I sincerely apologize to Jakob for the hit that led to this suspension, and I’m extremely thankful that he wasn’t seriously injured as a result of the play. I also want to apologize to my Sharks teammates and the organization.”
A statement from San Jose GM Doug Wilson:
“The Sharks organization fully supports the NHL’s supplementary discipline decision regarding Raffi. While we do not believe there was any malicious intent, this type of hit is unacceptable and has no place in our game. There is a difference between playing hard and crossing the line and there is no doubt, in this instance, Raffi crossed that line. We’re very thankful that Jakob was not seriously injured as a result of this play.”
Silfverberg says he expects to play Saturday when the Ducks open their regular season Saturday in San Jose.