San Jose Sharks v New Jersey Devils

Minnesota’s Mitchell signs with ECHL San Fran

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The San Francisco Bulls have added another locked-out NHLer to the fold, signing Wild forward Torrey Mitchell to a standard player contract.

The move is a reunion of sorts — the Bulls are an affiliate of the San Jose Sharks, who employed Mitchell for his first five seasons in the NHL.

Mitchell inked a three-year, $5.7 million deal with Minnesota in July.

“The entire organization is excited about seeing Torrey in a San Francisco Bulls uniform,” Bulls President/Head Coach Pat Curcio said in a statement. “We know how much of a fan favorite Torrey was with San Jose. We expect Bulls fans to feel the same way when they see him play at the Cow Palace.”

Mitchell joins Edmonton’s Theo Peckham (since departed) and former Sharks teammate Ryane Clowe as NHLers that have joined the Bulls since the work stoppage.

Clowe isn’t technically playing for San Fran, mind you — only practicing. On game nights, he’s behind the bench serving as Curcio’s assistant…though one wonders if he might get a few games in should the labor strife end soon.

Lucic: If I wanted to hurt Couture, ‘I would have hurt him’


Last night in Los Angeles, Kings forward Milan Lucic received a match penalty after skating the entire width of the ice to give San Jose’s Logan Couture a two-hand shove to the face.

Lucic didn’t hurt Couture, who had caught Lucic with an open-ice hit that Lucic didn’t like. Couture’s smiling, mocking face was good evidence that the Sharks’ forward was going to be OK.

This morning, Lucic was still in disbelief that he was penalized so harshly.

“I didn’t cross any line,” Lucic said, per Rich Hammond of the O.C. Register. “Believe me, if my intentions were to hurt him, I would have hurt him.”

While Lucic knew he deserved a penalty, he said after the game that he didn’t “know why it was called a match penalty.” His coach, Darryl Sutter, agreed, calling it “a borderline even roughing penalty.”

And though former NHL referee Kerry Fraser believes a match penalty was indeed warranted, Lucic said this morning that he hasn’t heard from the NHL about any possible supplemental discipline.

Nor for that matter has Dustin Brown, after his high hit on Couture in the first period.

In conclusion, it’s good to have hockey back.

Related: Sutter says Kings weren’t ‘interested’ in checking the Sharks

Torres apologizes to Silfverberg and Sharks


A statement from Raffi Torres:

“I accept the 41-game suspension handed down to me by the NHL’s Department of Player Safety. I worked extremely hard over the last two years following reconstructive knee surgery to resume my NHL career, and this is the last thing I wanted to happen. I am disappointed I have put myself in a position to be suspended again. I sincerely apologize to Jakob for the hit that led to this suspension, and I’m extremely thankful that he wasn’t seriously injured as a result of the play. I also want to apologize to my Sharks teammates and the organization.”

A statement from San Jose GM Doug Wilson:

“The Sharks organization fully supports the NHL’s supplementary discipline decision regarding Raffi. While we do not believe there was any malicious intent, this type of hit is unacceptable and has no place in our game. There is a difference between playing hard and crossing the line and there is no doubt, in this instance, Raffi crossed that line. We’re very thankful that Jakob was not seriously injured as a result of this play.”

Silfverberg says he expects to play Saturday when the Ducks open their regular season Saturday in San Jose.