Blackhawks’ Emery steals the show against Flames


Playing their third game in four nights, the Chicago Blackhawks relied on an unlikely source to provide the heroics.

Goalie Ray Emery, making his second start of the season and first since Jan. 20, stopped 45 of the 47 shots he faced – and then made three more stops in the shootout – as the Blackhawks pulled out a 3-2 victory over the Calgary Flames.

“It was criminal,” Blackhawks head coach Joel Quenneville told the Chicago Sun-Times of Emery’s performance.

“You’ve got to call the cops after that performance. We stole two points. He was spectacular. I’ve never ever been out-chanced, outplayed like that in my life. It was a special performance, and it continued in the shootout.”

Patrick Kane scored the shootout winner, thanks to a swift deke to the backhand that went through the five-hole of Miikka Kiprusoff.

Kane also opened the scoring in the third period, then assisted on Marian Hossa’s tying goal with three seconds remaining in regulation.

The Hossa equalizer came 32 seconds after Jay Bouwmeester gave the Flames a 2-1 lead.

Tim Jackman and Brandon Bollig added early energy with a lengthy scrap that saw both pugilists each land some heavy punches.

For the Flames, it was their first fighting major of the season, which got the attention of Don Cherry, the star of Hockey Night in Canada’s Coach’s Corner.

A lack of fights isn’t the reason for the Flames’ struggles – they are last in the Western Conference with one win in six games – it’s scoring, wrote the Calgary Sun’s Randy Sportak.

The Hawks were playing without David Bolland, who is out day-to-day with a right leg injury after getting slashed by the Canucks’ Jannik Hansen Friday.

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: All that’s been announced about Silfverberg is that he’s under evaluation and will not return.