Is there anything else that defines toughness in hockey then when a player gets cut on the face, goes for stitches and returns to the game?
Yes, there is – when it’s a coach who has to get patched up.
That was exactly the case Thursday, when New York Islanders coach Jack Capuano took a puck to the face while on the bench, requiring him to get stitches.
“It’s unbelievable,” Capuano told NHL.com staff writer Mike G. Morreale. “First kidney stone surgery, and then I get hit in the face with the puck. It’s just the way it goes.”
The Islanders eventually won the game 5-4 in overtime.
No lead was safe.
The Islanders jumped out to a 2-0 lead, only to have the Devils come back and tie it up. The Islanders grabbed two more one-goal leads and promptly gave them away.
Brad Boyes scored the winner at 2:01 of overtime, whacking home a loose puck during a goal crease scramble with the Devils short-handed. John Tavares had two goals and an assist, and is up to 11 points on the season.
“Good teams find a way,” Tavares told the New York Daily News. “Good teams that are successful respond. I feel like we are starting to understand what it takes more and more to be a successful team.
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.