Tim Erixon

Columbus’ Erixon on getting booed mercilessly: “I felt like Chris Pronger”


When Tim Erixon all but forced a trade from the Flames to the Rangers last year, he figured he’d get a rough ride the first time he played in Calgary.

Erixon figured right.

On Oct. 23 in a 3-2 Rangers win, Flames fans jeered Erixon throughout the contest — yet Erixon, now a member of the Columbus Blue Jackets, says he enjoyed the atmosphere.

“They booed, yes, every time my name was mentioned, every time I touched the puck,” he told the Columbus Dispatch. “I didn’t mind it actually, but I felt like Chris Pronger or something.

“The guys in the room were joking with me, even on the ice. I was behind our net with the puck and Henrik Lundqvist just looked at me and smiled. We both laughed about it.”

Even though the Calgary game was just Erixon’s fifth NHL contest (he’s only appeared in 18 all told), the 21-year-old has experienced plenty since being drafted 23rd overall at the 2009 NHL Entry Draft.

He’s been traded twice — once to New York, then to Columbus as part of the Rick Nash deal — and has played for a myriad of teams: the Rangers, Skelleftea AIK (Swedish league), Connecticut Whale (AHL), the Swedish National side (at the 2010 WJC and 2011 World Championship) and now, the Springfield Falcons, Columbus’ AHL affiliate.

Now settled, Erixon says he’s glad to have laded with the Blue Jackets organization.

“I think this is going to be a good spot for me,” Erixon said. “It’s a young team with a lot of competition on defense, so that’s good.

“We’re going to be a good team.”

Report: Islanders cut first-rounder Barzal from camp

Mathew Barzal
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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

Torres hit

What will Raffi Torres get this time?

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.

You can see the hit below:

And here it is slowed down:

Torres got a match penalty and Silfverberg left the game. Fortunately, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said that Silfverberg could have returned, but was kept out for precautionary reasons.