The 2012-13 campaign was a rough one for Ottawa Senators prospect Mark Stone, as he struggled with injuries such as a broken finger and high-ankle sprain and was lost in the shuffle with more established players ahead of him.
The Ottawa Citizen points out that a summer full of moves (letting Daniel Alfredsson walking, trading away players including Jakob Silfverberg) could very well open the door for Stone, 21, to make the team full-time.
(He played four games for Ottawa last season.)
Stone showed that he recognizes the opportunity – and the challenge – when discussing the Senators’ upcoming training camp with the Citizen.
“There are a lot of guys who can play in the NHL,” Stone said. “You realize that everybody is so close, from the AHL to the NHL, it’s just not that far apart, guys are knocking on the door everyday.
“ … I know I’m knocking on the door. It’s just a matter of me putting together some consistent hockey and showing I can play at this level for an 82-game season.”
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.