Yesterday, PK Subban and the Montreal Canadiens ended their contract impasse.
Today, Subban’s teammates were asked for their reaction to the news that the talented 23-year-old would be returning to the lineup.
And in what’s sure to raise eyebrows, the Canadian Press reports that the reception in the Habs’ dressing room was “surprisingly chilly.”
First, there was defenseman Andrei Markov, who refused to comment until Subban was “in the room.”
Then, there was defenseman Josh Gorges, who would only say he was glad the whole episode was over.
But was Gorges happy to have Subban back?
“Like I said, it’s good that it’s over and done with and it’s settled,” said Gorges. “We don’t have to have these talks in the morning of what-if-this and what-if-that. It’s over. We can focus on playing hockey.”
Meanwhile, Canadiens coach Michel Therrien not-so-subtly hinted that Subban has some work to do in the camaraderie department.
“One thing I demand of my players is to be good teammates,” Therrien said, per NHL.com. “When a group of players buys into being good teammates, then you can move forward.”
Subban’s popularity (or lack thereof) with his teammates has been a hot topic for much of his time with the club.
Don’t expect that topic to go away anytime soon.
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.