Alex Semin

Boudreau: Refs “have it out” for Semin

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When will there be justice for Alex Semin? The persecution of this poor man must stop.

At least that’s what Washington Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau thinks.

According to Boudreau, Semin has become a victim of his reputation for taking penalties.

“Obviously the refs seem to have it out for him. There’s no doubt that there are penalties he deserves. We’re not disputing that,” Boudreau said, as per the Washington Post. “But I don’t think that diving penalty [at Toronto] was a diving penalty, I don’t think the penalty in Winnipeg when he knocked the stick out of the guy’s hand was a penalty. They definitely look at him; he’s got a reputation so it’s unfortunate for him but he’s earned the reputation.”

Semin’s 14 minor penalties are the second most in the NHL. Only Anaheim’s Corey Perry has more (15), and a few of those were coincidental.

Semin’s penalty breakdown is as follows:

—- Tripping, 4

—- Hooking, 4

—- Diving, 2

—- Unsportsmanlike conduct, 1

—- Interference, 1

—- High sticking, 1

—- Boarding, 2

Maybe Boudreau’s right and the officials are watching Semin closer than others, but as Boudreau admits, that’s what a player gets with a history of taking lazy penalties and diving. Ask the Vancouver Canucks about getting on the wrong side of the officials. Try to make the refs look bad by embellishing, suffer the consequences.

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’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.