Nashville Predators v Vancouver Canucks - Game One

Carrie Underwood’s husband on Ottawa return: “Excited, but a little nervous”

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When the Senators sent longtime center Mike Fisher to Nashville last season, they did it on a road trip — meaning there was no opportunity for the Ottawa faithful to bid him farewell.

Because of that, there should be plenty of emotion on Thursday when Fisher returns to the Canadian capital.

“I’m excited, but a little nervous at the same time,” Fisher told the Globe and Mail. “I have so many great memories of my time in Ottawa. It’s going to be nice to see a lot of friends and the fans.”

Fisher played 675 games over 11 seasons for the Senators, emerging as a fan favorite. He was a key figure on the team that lost the 2007 Stanley Cup final to Anaheim and gave countless hours to charity — a big reason why Sens GM Bryan Murray was hesitant to pull the trigger on last February’s deal.

“It’s a tough trade for us. We know he’s been a good veteran here and he’s very popular with the fans,” Murray told James Gordon of the Ottawa Citizen at the time of the deal. “He’s a very good guy, a very popular guy, very popular with his teammates. Obviously a big member of the community.

“A guy that, when you do it, you have feelings in the pit of your stomach that are upsetting that you have to, if you’re going to go forward, you have to do something of this magnitude.”

Murray also admitted that “three or four” teams inquired about Fisher, but he leaned towards Nashville because of Fisher’s wife, country music singer Carrie Underwood. It’s something Fisher’s very appreciative of.

“Nashville has been very good to me,” he said. “The trade was hard, but if I had to go anywhere this was a great place to go. The team and fans have been great.”

Speaking of great, that’s exactly what Fisher’s been lately. He comes into Ottawa having scored eight goals in his last eight games, during which Nashville has posted a 6-1-1 record, moving into a tie for fourth overall in the NHL.

Fisher leads the Preds in goals, with 16.

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?