Two weeks removed from his short stint with Dinamo Minsk, Evander Kane is reflecting on his time in the KHL.
He’s just not reflecting on it with fondness.
“It didn’t work out,” Kane told the Winnipeg Free Press. “You play six minutes a night and they want you to score three goals a game.”
Kane played 12 games for the Belarusian club, registering just one point while finishing with a minus-8 rating.
And that wasn’t even the worst of it.
He was suspended one game for an illegal check to the head, blasted by his coach for poor fitness and was described as a player that couldn’t “adapt to hockey in the KHL” upon departing.
Despite all this, Kane did claim some positives. He said it was a good experience to see “what happens over there and how it works,” and called the Minsk fans some of the best in the KHL.
But it sounds as though Kane was always uncomfortable overseas. Aside from ex-Jet Tim Stapleton and a pair of fellow locked-out NHLers in Pekka Rinne and Joe Pavelski, not much was familiar to the young power forward.
“There were some long days in the hotel room,” Kane said. “You can’t watch TV. I don’t think I even turned on my TV the entire time I was over there. I watched movies and downloaded shows for the laptop.
“It wasn’t the most positive experience, but it was an experience for me.”
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.
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.