St. Louis takes puck to eye in practice, out tonight vs. Rangers


Tampa Bay Lightning winger Martin St. Louis’ streak of 499 consecutive games will be snapped after suffering an eye injury in today’s pregame skate.

Preparing for this evening’s contest against the Rangers, St. Louis was circling behind the net during a drill when teammate Dominic Moore hit him in the face with a backhanded shot. Erik Erlendsson of the Tampa Tribune reports St. Louis left the ice bleeding (and “a little wobbly”) and proceeded to the NYU Medical Center for evaluation on his swollen eye.

Moments later, Paul Kennedy of Sun Sports confirmed St. Louis would be held out of tonight’s game. “Bad things happen at the worst time,” Lighting GM Steve Yzerman said.

It’s a brutal break for St. Louis. While he told Damian Cristodero of the St. Petersburg Times he didn’t know, think or want to talk about the streak, it was a hot topic around the team yesterday. St. Louis’ impressive run began on Nov. 15, 2005 and including playoffs, was at 528 games. Since missing 26 games in 2001-02 because of a broken leg, St. Louis, including playoffs, has played 749 of 751 games.

“I’m mind-boggled,” coach Guy Boucher said. “Take his minutes, take his size, take his age, it’s absolutely unreal.”

“He is,” teammate Victor Hedman said, “one of those warriors.”

Report: Islanders cut first-rounder Barzal from camp

Mathew Barzal
Getty Images
Leave a comment

It seems Mathew Barzal has played in his last game in a New York Islanders’ uniform for a little while.

Barzal took part in the Islanders’ preseason finale against the Washington Capitals on Sunday, but after that contest the Islanders decided to return him to WHL Seattle, per Newsday’s Arthur Staple.

He was taken with the 16th overall pick in 2015 NHL Entry Draft. That selection was well-traveled as it originally belonged to the Pittsburgh Penguins, but was involved in the David Perron trade and then moved to the Islanders as part of Edmonton’s deal to get Griffin Reinhart.

Barzal is noteworthy for his skill and speed, but he may have slipped in the draft due to a knee injury he sustained during the 2014-15 campaign.

The Islanders also reassigned Kirill Petrov, Kevin Czuczman, Scott Mayfield, and Adam Pelech to the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

Torres offered in-person hearing, potentially setting up long suspension

Torres hit

What will Raffi Torres get this time?

The 33-year-old forward that has become known primarily for his controversial hits has once again put himself in the sights of the NHL’s Department of Players Safety. They confirmed that he was offered an in-person hearing following his hit on Jakub Silfverberg Saturday night. He declined the opportunity to meet with them face-to-face, but the offer itself is an important detail because it gives the league the option to suspend him for more than five games.

It certainly seems like the stage is set for a lengthy suspension. While Torres is not considered a repeat offender as his last suspension came more than 18 months ago, the NHL still retains the right to consider his history when deciding on this matter.

Among other incidents, he was once was banned from 25 games for his hit on Marian Hossa in 2012, although it was later reduced to 21 contests after an appeal. The NHL found that Torres was guilty of breaking three rules for that hit; namely interference, charging, and illegally hitting the head. The NHL is reviewing Torres’ latest incident for the same three violations.

You can see the hit below:

And here it is slowed down:

Torres got a match penalty and Silfverberg left the game. Fortunately, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said that Silfverberg could have returned, but was kept out for precautionary reasons.