Clarke MacArthur is getting ready for his first regular season game against the Toronto Maple Leafs squad he left over the summer. The 28-year-old forward had 62 points in 2011-12, but he fell in the Leafs’ depth charts while working under coach Randy Carlyle.
Now that he’s a member of the Ottawa Senators, he doesn’t plan to talk with his former bench boss.
“I didn’t have a relationship (with him) and not many guys do,” MacArthur told Sportsnet. “It’s one of those things where he runs the show there and everyone knows that and that’s the way it is.
“It’s worked for him in the past, he’s got a (Stanley) Cup from that, but at the same time there’s other ways to do things, too.”
MacArthur explained that he felt Carlyle only talked to him when the coach had criticisms to offer and that got grating.
“You’re old enough to know (you) made a mistake,” MacArthur said. “You don’t need to hear it every five seconds.”
He’s not the only one that’s publicly vented about Carlyle. Mikhail Grabovski was far harsher in his assessment after the Maple Leafs bought him out.
Grabovski also saw his playing time drop under Carlyle and signed with the Washington Capitals over the summer. He’s gotten off to a hot start with them with three goals and five points in two games.
At the same time, not all of Carlyle’s former players feel as negatively towards him. MacArthur’s teammate Bobby Ryan felt like his was a scapegoat at times for Carlyle when he was coaching the Anaheim Ducks, but in retrospect Ryan has softened his view.
“He’s a tough coach,” Ryan said last month. “I do still really owe him quite a bit for becoming the player I am. That isn’t lost on me one bit.”
As if Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final couldn’t get any more dramatic, it has — Tampa Bay captain Steve Stamkos, who hasn’t played since Mar. 31, will make his playoff debut against the Penguins tonight.
Stamkos underwent vascular surgery in early April to correct a blood clotting issue, and has remained on blood thinners ever since. While there’s been no confirmation he’s off medication, he did tell Sportsnet he’d be able to return to the lineup once he was.
Stamkos reiterated that he’s still on the same prescription of blood thinners he was given earlier this month. He takes a 12-hour dosage, twice a day, and it has been suggested to him that once he is cleared to stop taking the medication, Stamkos conceivably could return to the Lightning lineup almost immediately.
That’s why I’m trying to stay in shape,” he said.
Per NHL.com, Stamkos took the warmup and participated in line rushes centering Ondrej Palat and Ryan Callahan.
It’s been exactly eight weeks since Stamkos played his last game. At the time of his diagnosis, the Lightning said his timetable for recovery was 1-3 months.
To say his return will be a boost is a major understatement. Aside from the emotional factor, Stamkos led the Bolts in goals this year, with 36, and would presumably spark a power play that’s gone just 2-for-12 in the series.
Steve Stamkos took the team bus to tonight’s Eastern Conference Game 7 in Pittsburgh. As TVA noted, it was the first time he’s arrived early for a game in these playoffs.
In his pregame presser, Bolts head coach Jon Cooper refused to answer any questions about Stamkos’ availability.
And then Stamkos took the warmup.
As such, the drama surrounding Tampa Bay’s captain has reached an all-time high. Stamkos, who’s been out of the lineup since early April due to blood clots, looks as though he’s on the verge of an emotional comeback as the Lightning try to win an ECF Game 7 — on the road — for a second consecutive season.
“If Stamkos is in the lineup, it’s our best foot forward,” Cooper said. “If he’s not in the lineup, it’s because he wasn’t eligible to play.”
No word if No. 91 is still on the blood thinning medication he’s been taking since undergoing vascular surgery on Apr. 4.
EDINA, Minn. (AP) Minnesota Wild left wing Zach Parise has been rehabilitating his back injury without surgery, putting him on track to be at full strength by September.
Parise said Thursday he’s “happy with the way everything’s going.” He said he’s been able to work out as he normally does during the summer, despite missing the playoffs because of the injury.
Parise said there’s “no question” he’ll be ready to play for Team USA in the World Cup of Hockey tournament.
Parise joined teammates Erik Haula, Jason Pominville, Nate Prosser, Jared Spurgeon and Jason Zucker at an autograph signing to raise money for people affected by the wildfires in Alberta. The parents of Spurgeon’s wife, Danielle, lost their home to a fire in the Edmonton area.