Lombardi: ‘No structural damage, no setback’ for Kings’ Mitchell


L.A. Kings defenceman Willie Mitchell is medically cleared to play, following knee surgery during the lockout.

But the decision to step back into the Kings’ lineup remains up to him.

On Monday, the 35-year-old Mitchell underwent an MRI, according to Helene Elliott of the Los Angeles Times.

“There was no structural damage and no setback,” Kings general manager Dean Lombardi was quoted as saying Tuesday in the L.A. Times.

The fact Mitchell has been given medical clearance to play, but has chosen to not to dress seems to have caused some friction with head coach Darryl Sutter.

Not one for passing out long, cliched answers to the media, Sutter said of Mitchell’s absence from the lineup that he’s “not a doctor or a psychologist.”

The Kings are coming off a come-from-behind 3-2 shootout win over the Vancouver Canucks – the same team an underdog L.A. squad beat out in the first round of the 2012 playoffs on the way to a Stanley Cup – and will host the Nashville Predators on Thursday.

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?