Joffrey Lupul

Lupul (concussion) cleared for contact

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News keeps getting better for the Toronto Maple Leafs. After disposing the rival Canadiens last night, they find out today injured winger Joffrey Lupul has been cleared for contact.

Lupul spoke with media today in Toronto and says he’s feeling better after suffering a concussion against the Flyers on April 4. He also says he’s at fault for getting hit the way he did as Kevin McGran of the Toronto Star shares.

“I was disappointed with myself, putting myself in the situation to take that hit,” said Lupul. “I knew who I was on the ice with and where the puck was. I thought I located both those guys, but I didn’t see what way [Jay] Rosehill was coming.

“I take responsibility for that. You’ve got to protect yourself. I should have protected myself. Those two guys shouldn’t be taking me out of the lineup.”

The other player in that pileup was Adam Hall. A first-line caliber player getting taken out by a pair of fourth liners is a bit regretful. For Lupul, this seasons been especially tricky as he’s played in just 10 games. Toronto will be happy to have him back when he’s ready, especially for the postseason.

Report: Sean Avery was arrested last week

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From the Southampton Press:

Sean Avery, the former National Hockey League player, was arrested by Southampton Village Police last week on two criminal charges.

According to authorities, Mr. Avery was arrested September 30 following a routine traffic stop on Jennings Avenue in the village at about 4:09 p.m. He was charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief and two counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, all misdemeanors.

Police said the criminal mischief charge involved an incident the day before, when Mr. Avery allegedly threw objects at passing vehicles.

As for those counts of possession, according to the newspaper, Avery was found to have “two prescription drugs, acetaminophen with oxycodone and roxicodone.”

He was released on $500 bail and ordered to appear in court at a later date.

Did we mention he’s supposed to get married this weekend?

H/t Gawker

Devils send ’15 first-rounder Zacha back to junior

2015 NHL Draft - Round One

Pavel Zacha was this close to making his NHL debut.

Just days prior to opening their season against the Jets, the Devils returned Zacha — the sixth overall pick at this year’s draft — back to his junior club in OHL Sarnia.

The move comes after Zacha, 18, impressed throughout training camp and the preseason. He appeared in four exhibition games for New Jersey, scoring one point while endearing himself to the organizational brass, coaching staff and players.

“He understands the game. He plays with a maturity. It’s crazy to think an 18-year-old coming out of high school is up here and playing with the maturity and understanding of the game with the new system,” Kyle Palmieri told “I think he’s got a lot of raw talent there as a power forward. He’s got the body for it, the puck-handling skills and the nose for the net.”

At 6-foot-3 and 210 pounds, Zacha has the frame and physical stature to play at the NHL level, and looked the part for long stretches of the exhibition season, getting turns on New Jersey’s top line.

The decision to send him back to junior is probably the right one, however.

Zacha only turned 18 in April and has limited experience even at the OHL level; ’14-15 was his first year with Sarnia, though he did appear in 38 Czech League games (for Liberec) the season prior.