The Chicago Blackhawks re-wrote some NHL records with a points streak during the regular season. Now they need to defy the odds by winning three straight games against the Detroit Red Wings in their second-round series.
While frustrations are running high, starting goalie Corey Crawford provided some confident words about the team’s chances of coming back to the Chicago Sun-Times’ Mark Lazerus.
“Definitely,” Crawford said. “We’ve had streaks before.”
The 28-year-old netminder knows from experience.
He rode that hot streak with Ray Emery during the season and was often brilliant when the Blackhawks nearly stormed back from a 3-0 series deficit against the Vancouver Canucks in a first-round series from the 2011 playoffs.
On the other hand, some will note that the Blackhawks haven’t advanced to the conference finals since they won the Stanley Cup in 2010 and that the franchise hasn’t beaten the Red Wings in a playoff series since 1992, so history isn’t totally on their side.
Still, it might be uplifting to hear the No. 1 goalie’s optimism with their captain seething in a big way.
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.