Calgary Flames GM Jay Feaster sent an e-mail to the NHL’s other 29 general managers that fringe defensemen Cory Sarich and Anton Babchuk are available, according to Sportsnet’s John Shannon.
Considering the fact that most trade rumors have been driven by bigger names like Brenden Morrow, Dan Boyle and Jarome Iginla lately, that little bit provided some comic relief on Sunday.
The most amazing part, for some, was that Shannon reminded the hockey world that both Sarich and Babchuk have no-trade clauses.
Babchuk, 28, has appeared in two regular season games in 2013, collecting an assist. If you want to make an argument for his value, he was known for having a thunderous slap shot.
Sarich, 34, managed to get in 11 contests, but his -7 rating and average of about 13 minutes per game won’t blow people away. He does have a surprising amount of experience (898 regular season games played) and a Stanley Cup on his resume, however.
Still, for most, it was a report that was good for laughs. We’ll see if the marginal blueliners get packaged in a deal of some kind (with Iginla, perhaps?) or moved on their own or stay put.
Last night in Los Angeles, Kings forward Milan Lucic received a match penalty after skating the entire width of the ice to give San Jose’s Logan Couture a two-hand shove to the face.
Lucic didn’t hurt Couture, who had caught Lucic with an open-ice hit that Lucic didn’t like. Couture’s smiling, mocking face was good evidence that the Sharks’ forward was going to be OK.
This morning, Lucic was still in disbelief that he was penalized so harshly.
“I didn’t cross any line,” Lucic said, per Rich Hammond of the O.C. Register. “Believe me, if my intentions were to hurt him, I would have hurt him.”
While Lucic knew he deserved a penalty, he said after the game that he didn’t “know why it was called a match penalty.” His coach, Darryl Sutter, agreed, calling it “a borderline even roughing penalty.”
And though former NHL referee Kerry Fraser believes a match penalty was indeed warranted, Lucic said this morning that he hasn’t heard from the NHL about any possible supplemental discipline.
Nor for that matter has Dustin Brown, after his high hit on Couture in the first period.
In conclusion, it’s good to have hockey back.
Related: Sutter says Kings weren’t ‘interested’ in checking the Sharks
A statement from Raffi Torres:
“I accept the 41-game suspension handed down to me by the NHL’s Department of Player Safety. I worked extremely hard over the last two years following reconstructive knee surgery to resume my NHL career, and this is the last thing I wanted to happen. I am disappointed I have put myself in a position to be suspended again. I sincerely apologize to Jakob for the hit that led to this suspension, and I’m extremely thankful that he wasn’t seriously injured as a result of the play. I also want to apologize to my Sharks teammates and the organization.”
A statement from San Jose GM Doug Wilson:
“The Sharks organization fully supports the NHL’s supplementary discipline decision regarding Raffi. While we do not believe there was any malicious intent, this type of hit is unacceptable and has no place in our game. There is a difference between playing hard and crossing the line and there is no doubt, in this instance, Raffi crossed that line. We’re very thankful that Jakob was not seriously injured as a result of this play.”
Silfverberg says he expects to play Saturday when the Ducks open their regular season Saturday in San Jose.