Earlier this season, the CBC’s PJ Stock raised eyebrows by claiming that the Montreal Canadiens were far from excited to hear that P.K. Subban was set to join the team again after signing a new contract. Fair or not, Subban has been a lightning rod for criticism quite often in his career, yet he told NHL.com’s Arpon Basu that the negativity can give him a boost.
“I actually kind of like it when they talk like that, because it just adds more fuel to the fire,” Subban said.
Subban, 23, will only get to redirect that negative energy toward his offseason regimen. (Then again, the young blueliner will need another contract after the 2013-14 season, so motivation shouldn’t be in short supply this summer anyway.)
It seems that Subban is comfortable with the pressure that comes with being a young, sometimes polarizing star in Montreal. Subban shrugged off criticisms to The Globe & Mail in March.
“Unless someone’s knocking on my door at 3:30 in the morning disrupting my sleep, I don’t get too rattled,” Subban said. “You have to have thick skin playing here. If people want to say they’re hard on me, that’s fine, but I think I’m harder on myself than anything.”
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.