Sabres might scratch Grigorenko Thursday


Much like last season, it appears that Mikhail Grigorenko is struggling to translate his considerable skills into NHL production. Unfortunately for the 19-year-old, the Olean Times Herald reports that he might be on his way to healthy scratch status again, too.

Grigorenko hasn’t scored a single point in four contests, firing a middling five shots on goal.

Sabres head coach Ron Rolston explains his struggles (Note: please don’t take a shot every time he says “puck.”)

“You have to find a way to be an impact in a game,” Rolston said. “It’s his ability to put himself in positions where he can use those skills. So that means you got to go to the puck. You got to get the puck. You got to support the puck. You got to be around the puck. You got to battle for the puck. You can stickhandle in a phone booth. That doesn’t really translate unless you can be an impact in a game.”

Last season, Grigorenko was in that awkward developmental stage in which he was too gifted for the lower level (54 points in 33 QMJHL games for the Quebec Ramparts), but not quite there yet in the NHL.

Considering his young age, let’s hope that these growing pains don’t shake his confidence.

Report: Islanders cut first-rounder Barzal from camp

Mathew Barzal
Getty Images
Leave a comment

It seems Mathew Barzal has played in his last game in a New York Islanders’ uniform for a little while.

Barzal took part in the Islanders’ preseason finale against the Washington Capitals on Sunday, but after that contest the Islanders decided to return him to WHL Seattle, per Newsday’s Arthur Staple.

He was taken with the 16th overall pick in 2015 NHL Entry Draft. That selection was well-traveled as it originally belonged to the Pittsburgh Penguins, but was involved in the David Perron trade and then moved to the Islanders as part of Edmonton’s deal to get Griffin Reinhart.

Barzal is noteworthy for his skill and speed, but he may have slipped in the draft due to a knee injury he sustained during the 2014-15 campaign.

The Islanders also reassigned Kirill Petrov, Kevin Czuczman, Scott Mayfield, and Adam Pelech to the AHL’s Bridgeport Sound Tigers.

Torres offered in-person hearing, potentially setting up long suspension

Torres hit

What will Raffi Torres get this time?

The 33-year-old forward that has become known primarily for his controversial hits has once again put himself in the sights of the NHL’s Department of Players Safety. They confirmed that he was offered an in-person hearing following his hit on Jakub Silfverberg Saturday night. He declined the opportunity to meet with them face-to-face, but the offer itself is an important detail because it gives the league the option to suspend him for more than five games.

It certainly seems like the stage is set for a lengthy suspension. While Torres is not considered a repeat offender as his last suspension came more than 18 months ago, the NHL still retains the right to consider his history when deciding on this matter.

Among other incidents, he was once was banned from 25 games for his hit on Marian Hossa in 2012, although it was later reduced to 21 contests after an appeal. The NHL found that Torres was guilty of breaking three rules for that hit; namely interference, charging, and illegally hitting the head. The NHL is reviewing Torres’ latest incident for the same three violations.

You can see the hit below:

And here it is slowed down:

Torres got a match penalty and Silfverberg left the game. Fortunately, Ducks coach Bruce Boudreau said that Silfverberg could have returned, but was kept out for precautionary reasons.