After two straight losses to the New Jersey Devils during the weekend, the Pittsburgh Penguins could probably use a pick-me-up. They’ll get that against the Ottawa Senators on Wednesday, as the team announced that defensemen Kris Letang and Matt Niskanen are back from injuries.
The two blueliners have developed nice chemistry together, when healthy.
Letang, 25, is recovering from a lower-body injury that sidelined him for three games. The scoring defenseman has managed nine points in 10 games so far this season.
Niskanen, 26, was on the shelf since late January with an ankle injury. The young defenseman seemed like a mere throw-in as a part of the James Neal trade, but he’s logged more than 18 minutes per game in the five contests he played in 2013.
The duo look like they’ll be reunited in tonight’s game against the Senators in a game that will start at 7 p.m. ET.
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.
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?