Mike Smith, Tomas Holmstrom

Tomas Holmstrom is the Red Wings’ Masterton nominee


The Masterton Trophy nominations continue to roll in and there’s another fascinating player being selected by his hometown media.

Detroit’s Tomas Holmstrom gets the call today as the Red Wings nominee for the award and Ansar Khan from Mlive.com hears it from Wings captain Nicklas Lidstrom about what makes Holmstrom the team’s ideal choice.

“We know what he’s been going through with his bad knees,” Lidstrom said. “We know the beating he’s been taking in front of the net and in the offensive zone, but he keeps getting back in there. He’s got so much determination and will. You can tell with his bad knees that he’s not giving up at all.”

 Holmstrom joins Pittsburgh’s Matt Cooke and Nashville’s Jordin Tootoo as Masterton nominees that don’t have sparkling reputations for one reason or another. Cooke being a reformed player and Tootoo’s escape from his personal demons make for much more captivating stories than Holmstrom, however. That won’t stop fans from twitching when hearing their names or seeing them on the ice for a game.

Jason Demers tweets #FreeTorres, gets mocked

Los Angeles Kings v San Jose Sharks - Game One

Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.

We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.

It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”

Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)

Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.

So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”

… You get the idea.

The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.

The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.

Bruins list Chara on IR, for now

Zdeno Chara

Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.

It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.

The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.

As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.

Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?

The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.

This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.