Lucic Miller

GMs discuss protecting goalies at meetings

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We understand some of you might be getting sick of this whole “protecting the goalie” topic. If that’s the case, we’re sorry. However, the league’s general managers were concerned enough to talk about it this morning during their meetings in Toronto, so we have to report it. If you’re not interested, click here to read Mike Florio’s Week 10 NFL power rankings. The 49ers at No. 2? Whodathunkit!

Anyway, Penguins GM Ray Shero believes the NHL’s decision to not suspend Milan Lucic for his hit on Ryan Miller could have unfortunate consequences.

“If you get into a playoff series and these guys are going to play pucks and you run (goalies) over and get a two-minute penalty, I think you’re going to open up a set of pretty dangerous circumstances,” Shero said, as per NHL.com.

While such concerns were surely raised, it sounds like the meeting was more about clarifying the current rules than anything else.

“Brendan [Shanahan] has said the goalie is not fair game and that’s going to be the message to our team,” Shero said. “The goalie is not fair game. If the guy is going to play it outside the crease you have to be pretty careful.”

So just to reiterate, the goalie is not fair game. It’s right here in the rulebook.

Lucic wasn’t suspended because, as the rulebook states, “incidental contact, at the discretion of the Referee, will be permitted when the goalkeeper is in the act of playing the puck outside his goal crease provided the attacking player has made a reasonable effort to avoid such contact.”

Shanahan accepted Lucic’s defense that contact was unavoidable. I didn’t see it that way, but I’m not Shanahan. If I was, I’d have nicer clothes.

Video: Mika Zibanejad’s check to Tyler Bozak’s head

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Saturday’s been unkind to the Toronto Maple Leafs, and not just on the scoreboard (where it’s 3-0 early on against the Ottawa Senators).

The Maple Leafs lost Tyler Bozak to an apparent upper-body injury thanks to a questionable hit by Sens forward Mika Zibanejad.

You can judge that check (which drew a minor penalty for illegal check to the head) in the video above. Again, Bozak will not return to tonight’s game.

It’s unclear if Bozak will miss time beyond this contest.

Malcolm Subban hospitalized after taking puck to throat

Malcolm Subban
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Scary stuff on Saturday: multiple reporters (including the Maine Hockey Journal’s Chris Roy) note that Malcolm Subban was taken to a hospital after a puck struck his throat during warm-ups.

There’s no word yet on Subban’s condition beyond that he was taken away in an ambulance.

The AHL’s Providence Bruins seem like they’ve been left scrambling for a backup goalie in Subban’s absence.

Subban stated days ago that he’s taken some significant steps forward during the 2015-16 season.

 

Senators get Kyle Turris back on Saturday

Ottawa Senators' Kyle Turris celebrates his game-winning goal against the Montreal Canadiens during overtime of an NHL hockey game Tuesday, Nov. 3, 2015, in Montreal. (Paul Chiasson/The Canadian Press via AP)
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The Ottawa Senators cannot pin all of their troubles on missing their No. 1 center, yet it probably feels like a huge relief to get him back.

After missing six games with his latest injury, Kyle Turris is in the lineup as the Senators take on the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Again, it’s not all a matter of missing Turris, but the Senators went 1-5-0 during his six-game absence. They’ve really been falling since late December, to be honest.

Will Turris be enough to stop the bleeding? Perhaps to an extent, but the Senators are in for a serious battle if they hope to fight through the East bubble.

Habs’ win was a showcase for P.K. Subban, Connor McDavid

Montreal Canadiens defensemen  P.K. Subban (76) holds off Edmonton Oilers' Connor McDavid during the third period of an NHL hockey game in Montreal, Saturday, Feb. 6, 2016. (Graham Hughes /The Canadian Press via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT
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Times have been tough for Montreal Canadiens and Edmonton Oilers fans lately, even if they’ve been frustrating in different ways.

Saturday’s 5-1 Habs win highlights a few things, but the most tantalizing thought for those fans is that it’s likely that we’ll see more great things from P.K. Subban and Connor McDavid … sometimes against each other.

Perhaps this will be a confidence booster for Montreal. More than anything else, it directed attention to Subban, who’s quietly been absolutely fantastic for the floundering Canadiens.

Consider how much of an offensive burden he’s currently carrying:

From one current All-Star to someone who could be a perennial one: McDavid certainly seemed to grab Subban’s attention.

Then again, when you make moves like these, who won’t notice?

The Oilers did lose, mind you, so it’s not surprising that Todd McLellan mentioned that the team can’t depend upon McDavid for everything.

That said, the funny thing about that quote is that McDavid might just carry the Oilers for two decades, at least if health and other factors go the right way.

If that’s true, Subban vs. McDavid could be a fun matchup to watch a few times per season for a long, long time.