P.K. Subban

Subban on being a healthy scratch: “It’s embarrassing”


Randy Cunneyworth’s inability to speak French is the least of PK Subban’s concerns.

He’s got to figure out how to get back in Cunneyworth’s good graces — in any language.

Last Thursday, Cunneyworth made his first bold move as head coach (check that, interim head coach) by scratching Subban and center Lars Eller for a game in Winnipeg, which Montreal lost 4-0.

“You don’t want to be a healthy scratch and when you are it’s embarrassing,” Subban told the Globe and Mail. “You’re walking through the airport going home and you don’t even want to look at anybody, because people put so much hope in you as playing and helping the team.

“You want to help the team. And when they don’t think you can do the job, it’s embarrassing. It’s not fun. But it’s not my decision on whether I play or not, so when I get the opportunity I just show up.”

Even though he declined to speak with reporters today, Subban looks as though he’ll rejoin the Habs lineup tonight against Ottawa (he was paired with Josh Gorges and back on the powerplay point during practice.)

And assuming Subban’s back in, the focus will undoubtedly be on his response. Even though he was minus-4 in consecutive losses to Boston and Chicago after careless giveaways on key goals, sitting him out was deemed an extreme measure. Subban leads all Canadiens in average ice time (23:59) and mans both the powerplay and penalty kill.

“I don’t ever want to be a healthy scratch again,” he said. “I shouldn’t be.

“When it happens it’s embarrassing. There’s no other word. I’m not angry, not sad, not mad at myself. It’s just embarrassing.”

It looks like Havlat won’t make Panthers

Martin Havlat
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As PHT’s mentioned before, the Florida Panthers stand as a fascinating contrast between youth and experience.

Let’s not kid ourselves, though; fresh faces usually beat out gray beards, at least when it comes to teams that are still trying to build toward contender status.

While it’s by no means official, two Panthers beat writers – the Miami Herald’s George Richards and the Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov – report that the Panthers are likely to pass on Martin Havlat.

It wasn’t just about the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad leading the charge. Other young Panthers (maybe most notably Quinton Howden and Connor Brickley) made the team, thus making Havlat less necessary.

One would assume that it might be tough for the 34-year-old to find work, at least if he insists upon only an NHL deal.

Health issues continue to dog him, but he’s no longer one of those guys who tantalizes with talent when he is healthy enough to play.

Havlat also doesn’t really bring much to the table defensively. While other veterans can kill penalties and show a little more verstaility, Havlat’s greatest selling point is scoring.

Could this be it for a solid career that may nonetheless end with a “What if?” or two?

Silfverberg is set to practice again after Torres hit

Jakob Silfverberg
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Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.

The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.

The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:

That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.

Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:

Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.

Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.