The Ottawa Senators can breathe a sigh of relief. After enduring a 3-5-2 stretch in March, the Senators have bounced back with four straight victories to earn a playoff spot. Even without Jason Spezza and Daniel Alfredsson, the Ottawa Senators were able to post a 5-1 victory over the New York Islanders on Sunday.
With two of the Senators’ top players gone, Kyle Turris picked up the slack. Turris scored two goals and registered two assists to give him eight points in his last four contests.
Ottawa’s Erik Karlsson registered an assist to extend his point streak to four games. He’s just two points shy of tying Nicklas Lidstrom’s all-time point record for Swedish blueliners with three games left in the Senators schedule.
For Ottawa these final three contests should be primarily about getting ready for the postseason. They can still finish as high as sixth or as low as eighth, but they will probably end up with the seventh seed. That means their first round opponent will almost certainly be the Boston Bruins. The two clubs have never played against each other in the playoffs.
Meanwhile, the Islanders have nothing left to play for other than personal pride. Their matchup against the Devils has little significance, even to New Jersey. Beyond that they will play against two other squads that won’t be making the playoffs: Winnipeg Jets and Columbus Blue Jackets.
Report: Islanders cut first-rounder Barzal from camp
It seems Mathew Barzal has played in his last game in a New York Islanders’ uniform for a little while.
Barzal took part in the Islanders’ preseason finale against the Washington Capitals on Sunday, but after that contest the Islanders decided to return him to WHL Seattle, per Newsday’s Arthur Staple.
He was taken with the 16th overall pick in 2015 NHL Entry Draft. That selection was well-traveled as it originally belonged to the Pittsburgh Penguins, but was involved in the David Perron trade and then moved to the Islanders as part of Edmonton’s deal to get Griffin Reinhart.
Barzal is noteworthy for his skill and speed, but he may have slipped in the draft due to a knee injury he sustained during the 2014-15 campaign.
The Islanders also reassigned Kirill Petrov, Kevin Czuczman, Scott Mayfield, and Adam Pelech to the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers.
Torres offered in-person hearing, potentially setting up long suspension
The 33-year-old forward that has become known primarily for his controversial hits has once again put himself in the sights of the NHL’s Department of Players Safety. They confirmed that he was offered an in-person hearing following his hit on Jakub Silfverberg Saturday night. He declined the opportunity to meet with them face-to-face, but the offer itself is an important detail because it gives the league the option to suspend him for more than five games.
It certainly seems like the stage is set for a lengthy suspension. While Torres is not considered a repeat offender as his last suspension came more than 18 months ago, the NHL still retains the right to consider his history when deciding on this matter.
Among other incidents, he was once was banned from 25 games for his hit on Marian Hossa in 2012, although it was later reduced to 21 contests after an appeal. The NHL found that Torres was guilty of breaking three rules for that hit; namely interference, charging, and illegally hitting the head. The NHL is reviewing Torres’ latest incident for the same three violations.