Nicklas Backstrom

Nicklas Backstrom’s late cross-check could bring suspension


The Boston Bruins’ increasingly tense and remarkably tight 4-3 win against the Washington Capitals got awfully chippy as the game went along. One of the surprising parties involved in the violence was Capitals star Nicklas Backstrom, who might just be in line for a suspension for this:

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Mike Vogel has the details:

“In addition to match penalty, player shall be automatically suspended from further competition until Commissioner has ruled on the issue.”

There are a few interesting things to consider. The NHL likely has the right to rescind the penalty, thus stripping the automatic suspension from the situation. Of course, the league had a similar (in some ways) opportunity in regard to Craig Adams, who received a one-game suspension.

Will Adams’ suspension serve as a precedent-setter? Could Backstrom’s star status get him out of it? More importantly, do you think Backstrom deserves to get off the hook?

The Swedish center already has an overtime game-winner in this series, so this could be another big loss for Washington after they fell in Game 3.

More on the incident

Dale Hunter doesn’t think it is suspension-worthy.

Rich Peverley tells his side of the story.

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: All that’s been announced about Silfverberg is that he’s under evaluation and will not return.