Jonathan Toews, Patrick Sharp

Blackhawks welcome Sharp, Toews back to practice

1 Comment

When word surfaced that Jonathan Toews was dealing with an upper-body injury last week, I could just imagine coach Joel Quenneville whispering in his captain’s ear:

“Skip the All-Star Game so you can be fresh against the Vancouver Canucks.”

(Note: I also imagine Quenneville combing his mustache while saying this, so my imagination might not be aligned with reality here.)

Naturally, as big as that game might be, it’s still just one of 82. There’s no guarantee that a practice appearance means these players will be ready for game time, but’s Tracey Myers reports that Toews and fellow stud Patrick Sharp skated with the team on Monday.

Sharp has missed three weeks with a wrist injury while the rumor is that Toews’ injury might be hand-related, as well. If those two forwards do return, the Blackhawks will be a dramatically deeper team on Tuesday considering the fact that Brendan Morrison is primed to make his debut with Chicago too.

It’s silly to say that it’s all about Vancouver considering that tomorrow’s match against the Canucks is just the first obstacle in a grueling nine-game, nearly three-week-long road trip, but it’s just plain fun to think of it as an epic battle anyway.

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

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One
Leave a comment

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?