Sounds like Bobby Ryan will be getting top-line minutes in Ottawa this season.
In speaking with the Ottawa Sun, Sens GM Bryan Murray said Ryan would likely play in a top three role next season, meaning he’d be with Jason Spezza and Milan Michalek, who occasionally played on the aforementioned “SAM” line along with former team captain Daniel Alfredsson, now in Detroit.
“I think he likes to play the left side more than the right side,” Murray said of Ryan. “I know Milan can play the right side pretty well too.
“I would think he’s probably in our Top 3, so therefore probably with Spezz.”
There was some thought Ottawa would keep Spezza and Michalek with Colin Greening — the trio performed well together last season — and put Ryan on a line centered by Kyle Turris, along with newly-acquired LW/RW Clarke MacArthur.
But loading up the No. 1 line appears to be the way Ottawa will go.
In other news, it doesn’t sound as though Murray will be looking to make any more trades in the near future.
“We’ve got bodies, and if we have to do something, we’ll have to go try and go do it,” said Murray. “But I don’t want to give up more kids right now if I can help it.”
Related to Murray’s goal of keeping the “kids” — who are playing on cheaper, entry-level deals — embattled Sens owner Eugene Melynk got more bad financial news on Tuesday, as his plan to build a casino was scuttled by the city.
Melnyk had hoped the casino project would offset the “substantial losses” of the hockey club.
Does the NHL have a cocaine problem?
TSN caught up with deputy commissioner Bill Daly, who provided some fascinating insight:
“The number of [cocaine] positives are more than they were in previous years and they’re going up,” Daly said. “I wouldn’t say it’s a crisis in any sense. What I’d say is drugs like cocaine are cyclical and you’ve hit a cycle where it’s an ‘in’ drug again.”
Daly said that he’d be surprised “if we’re talking more than 20 guys” and then touched on something that may be a problem: they don’t test it in a “comprehensive way.”
As Katie Strang’s essential ESPN article about the Los Angeles Kings’ tough season explored in June, there are some challenges for testing for a drug like cocaine. That said, there are also some limitations that may raise some eyebrows.
For one, it metabolizes quickly. Michael McCabe, a Philadelphia-based toxicology expert who works for Robson Forensic, told ESPN.com that, generally speaking, cocaine filters out of the system in two to four days, making it relatively easy to avoid a flag in standard urine tests.
The NHL-NHLPA’s joint drug-testing program is not specifically designed to target recreational drugs such as cocaine or marijuana. The Performance Enhancing Substances Program is put into place to do exactly that — screen for performance-enhancing drugs.
So, are “party drugs” like cocaine and molly an issue for the NHL?
At the moment, the answer almost seems to be: “the league hopes not.”
Daly goes into plenty of detail on the issue, so read the full TSN article for more.
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.