Alexander Semin, Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom

Capitals play like they’re supposed to for one night


It’s just one game, but the Washington Capitals finally looked like the team many have been waiting for on Tuesday. They handled the Nashville Predators 4-1 as Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Alexander Semin found the net for three of those goals. (’s Chuck Gormley reports that this is the first time that Ovechkin and Semin scored in the same game this season.)

Ovechkin fired seven shots. Backstrom also had an assist in the game. Mike Knuble was honored for playing in his 1,000th career contest.

Yup, it was the kind of night that wasn’t supposed to be so rare for Washington. Sure, there were some things that weren’t part of the plan; Michal Neuvirth made his fourth consecutive start and Semin coughed up one of his trademark turnovers for Nashville’s only goal.

Still, considering the way things have gone, these highlights are a sight for sore eyes.

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Dropping like flies: Johnson, Killorn hurt in Bolts’ exhibition

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One
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You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.

We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.

“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.

These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.

Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.

It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.

Raffi Torres gets match penalty for being Raffi Torres

Raffi Torres

With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.

It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.

Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:

It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).

As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.

Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:

This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.

Update: Bullet dodged?