Grabovski collects two assists in his Caps debut


Monday was a busy day for Mikhail Grabovski.

Hours after comparing former teammate Phil Kessel to a “musketeer,” he also made his first in-game impressions on his new Washington Capitals colleagues, albeit in a preseason contest. Grabovski, 29, assisted on both of Washington’s goals in a 3-2 overtime loss to the Boston Bruins.

It’s possible he was one of the few Capitals who really looked impressive, at least from the box score; the Bruins out-shot the Capitals 38-14 tonight. Of course, the B’s loaded up while Washington iced a fairly anonymous crew beyond Grabovski, Martin Erat, Troy Brouwer, Brooks Laich and Braden Holtby, so that probably explains the disparity.

Grabovski fared well individually beyond the pair of helpers, winning 50 percent of his faceoffs, logging 19:15 of ice time and firing three shots on goal.

The more interesting debut comes in the regular season opener against the Chicago Blackhawks on Oct. 1, but Caps fans can be forgiven if they’re already a little more excited about their new No. 2 center.

It looks like Havlat won’t make Panthers

Martin Havlat
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As PHT’s mentioned before, the Florida Panthers stand as a fascinating contrast between youth and experience.

Let’s not kid ourselves, though; fresh faces usually beat out gray beards, at least when it comes to teams that are still trying to build toward contender status.

While it’s by no means official, two Panthers beat writers – the Miami Herald’s George Richards and the Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov – report that the Panthers are likely to pass on Martin Havlat.

It wasn’t just about the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad leading the charge. Other young Panthers (maybe most notably Quinton Howden and Connor Brickley) made the team, thus making Havlat less necessary.

One would assume that it might be tough for the 34-year-old to find work, at least if he insists upon only an NHL deal.

Health issues continue to dog him, but he’s no longer one of those guys who tantalizes with talent when he is healthy enough to play.

Havlat also doesn’t really bring much to the table defensively. While other veterans can kill penalties and show a little more verstaility, Havlat’s greatest selling point is scoring.

Could this be it for a solid career that may nonetheless end with a “What if?” or two?

Silfverberg is set to practice again after Torres hit

Jakob Silfverberg
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Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.

The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.

The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:

That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.

Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:

Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.

Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.