Generally speaking, you’re not going to look very bright when you blast a team that just beat you, as Joe Thornton did when he called the New York Rangers the “softest team” the San Jose Sharks played during their six-game road trip. To little surprise, Thornton backpedaled a bit later on, as he admitted to CSNBayArea.com’s Kevin Kurz that he said “a boneheaded thing” on Monday night.
Naturally, Thornton only offered a “no comment” to John Tortorella’s predictably hilarious response, which included an equally predictable reference to Thornton’s lack of a Stanley Cup ring.
In making those emotional comments, Jumbo Joe’s real goal should be clear: he wanted his team to play harder after getting outplayed by a team that looks less impressive on paper. It just so happened that he put his foot in his mouth in the process, encouraging Ray Ratto and others to wonder if it was a bad move by the Sharks’ captain.
To me, it just speaks to the reason why reporters interview athletes right after games. Every now and then, the post-game anger erases cliches and we get to hear how players really feel, even if those feelings aren’t always very rational.
Thornton would be wise not to justify such journalistic aims in the future, though – especially not in New York.
It wouldn’t be a regular season game without a Columbus Blue Jackets injury, right?
OK, the Blue Jackets hope that 2015-16 looks different from the medically challenged mess of last season, but at least one player is banged up tonight.
Alexander Wennberg suffered an upper-body injury and won’t return on Friday, as the team noted.
There’s no word yet regarding how serious the issue might be. It looks like he might have suffered an injury thanks to a Chris Kreider check:
Naturally, the Blue Jackets must hope that this doesn’t begin another trend.
In slightly less interesting Los Angeles Kings news than the latest in the Mike Richards fiasco, the team handed Peter Budaj a one-year, two-way deal on Friday.
The veteran goalie’s contract pays $575K on the NHL level and $100K in the AHL (though it’s $150K guaranteed), according to Hockey’s Cap.
At the moment, it sounds like Budaj will be third on the Kings’ goalie depth chart. That says as much about how things have been going lately for Los Angeles than Budaj’s work on a PTO.
As noted above, one of the more significant moves in Budaj’s favor came when the New York Islanders claimed Jean-Francois Berube off of waivers this week.
The Kings actually waived Budaj before signing him, so this has to be a relief to a goalie with a fairly robust resume as a backup.
All apologies to Budaj, but it’s probably true that the Kings would prefer not to see him at the NHL level very often in 2015-16.