Extra! Extra! Alex Ovechkin makes good defensive play!
Indeed, Ovi’s backcheck (video) Sunday in a 3-0 Capitals victory over Minnesota was so impressive (or surprising) that it made the pages of the Washington Times.
Washington had a 1-0 lead and a power play with the chance to put the offensively challenged Wild away. But when the puck bounced out to defenseman Dennis Wideman, he turned into a pylon as Minnesota forwards Mikko Koivu and Cal Clutterbuck streaked up the ice.
It was a two-on-one with Ovechkin as the one, usually a recipe for trouble. But Ovechkin didn’t quit on the play, poking the puck away from Koivu and preventing what could have been a momentum-turning short-handed goal.
Ovi’s commitment to defense has come under fire many times in the past – in fact, it came under fire Friday after Winnipeg scored in overtime (video). So while we’re not sure it’s a good thing that not quitting on a play earns a story in the newspaper…um…congratulations?
Related: Ovechkin’s belly-pat celebration is getting a lot of pub
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.
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?