Kreider, Yakupov highlight NHLPA Rookie Showcase


Even with labor strife looming, the NHL’s 2012-13 freshman class will still participate in an annual rite of passage.

On Aug. 28, 30 of next season’s top rookie prospects will be in Toronto for the fourth annual NHLPA Rookie Showcase.

More, from the PA:

Panini America and Upper Deck – the official trading card partners of the NHLPA and the NHL – will be photographing the rookies for the first time ever in their new official NHL team uniforms. The photos will be used for upcoming trading cards and memorabilia items.

EA Sports will also be taking head scans of the rookies to be used in their upcoming NHL 13 video game.

This year’s field will be highlighted by Rangers forward Chris Kreider — who broke a 59-year-old record by scoring five playoff goals before making his regular season debut — and Edmonton’s Nail Yakupov, the first overall selection at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. The 28 other participants are:

Tyson Barrie (Avalanche)
Nathan Beaulieu (Canadiens)
Beau Bennett (Penguins)
Jack Campbell (Stars)
Charlie Coyle (Wild)
Emerson Etem (Ducks)
Alex Galchenyuk (Canadiens)
Dougie Hamilton (Bruins)
Quinton Howden (Panthers)
Tomas Jurco (Red Wings)
Jared Knight (Bruins)
Leo Komarov (Maple Leafs)
Scott Laughton (Flyers)
Joe Morrow (Penguins)
Ryan Murphy (Hurricanes)
Ryan Murray (Blue Jackets)
Brock Nelson (Islanders)
Jamie Oleksiak (Stars)
Griffin Reinhart (Islanders)
Morgan Rielly (Maple Leafs)
Justin Schultz (Oilers)
Jaden Schwartz (Blues)
Reilly Smith (Stars)
Ryan Spooner (Bruins)
Jarred Tinordi (Canadiens)
Tyler Toffoli (Kings)
Mark Visentin (Coyotes)
Austin Watson (Predators)

Last year’s rookie showcase featured all three nominees for the 2012 Calder Trophy — New Jersey’s Adam Henrique, Edmonton’s Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and the eventual winner, Colorado’s Gabriel Landeskog.

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?