It’s so predictable, the pressure that accompanies being the No. 1 overall pick in the NHL Draft.
Nathan MacKinnon knew that going into Sunday. He knows that two days after his name was called by the Colorado Avalanche.
Of course, only adding to that is the fact he comes from the same town – Cole Harbour, Nova Scotia – as NHL sensation Sidney Crosby, and the Avalanche have missed the playoffs three straight seasons.
But rather than heap even more expectations on his newest young-star-in-the-making, Avalanche head coach Patrick Roy is trying to ease the pressure off MacKinnon just a little bit.
“I want him to have fun,” Roy told the Associated Press.
“There’s going to be enough pressure on him anyway. I know he’s going to deal well with it. At the same time, it’s important for him to feel comfortable.
“We need to give him time to adapt and just feel comfortable.”
The addition of MacKinnon already has Roy formulating line combinations, more than two months before training camp gets underway.
It appears, very early on, that MacKinnon could occupy the third-line center spot with Colorado.
According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, Raffi Torres has been suspended pending his disciplinary hearing with the league for his hit on Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.
Torres was assessed a match penalty for targeting Silfverberg’s head on Saturday night.
The 33-year-old missed all of last season with a knee injury, and it looks like the start of his regular season will be delayed once again.
Head coach Bruce Boudreau said that Silfverberg could have come back into the game, but he was held out for precautionary reasons.
Ducks center Ryan Kesler didn’t hide his feelings after the contest.
“(Torres) is the same player every year,” Kesler told reporters. “He needs to learn how to hit. That has no part in our game anymore.”
The Edmonton Oilers placed Ben Scrivens on waivers on Sunday.
Should he go unclaimed, the 29-year-old will be sent to the American Hockey League.
It looks like Edmonton will enter the regular season with Cam Talbot and Anders Nilsson as their goaltenders.
Scrivens was the team’s number one goalie last year, but his overall numbers were among the worst for starting goaltenders in the NHL.
He had a 15-26-11 record with a 3.16 goals-against-average and a .890 save percentage in 57 games last season.
Scrivens is scheduled to make $2.3 million in the final year of his contract.
If he does end up in the AHL, the Oilers will carry $1.35 million of dead money on the salary cap.
The move comes one day after Edmonton placed Nikita Nikitin on waivers.
The 29-year-old officially cleared on Sunday afternoon.