Now that the Florida Panthers have new ownership, they’re reportedly ready to shake things up.
Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Sun reports new owners Vincent Viola and Douglas Cifu aren’t happy with the team’s slow start and are ready to move any of their veteran players. Who can be had for the right price? Pretty much anyone.
Forwards Tomas Fleischmann, Kris Versteeg, Scottie Upshall, Shawn Matthias, Brad Boyes and Marcel Goc are among those available along with Tom Gilbert and Dmitry Kulikov, just to name a few.
The Panthers are 3-6-0 to start the season which in the Eastern Conference puts them a short winning streak away from being a playoff team. They’re just four points back of third place Montreal and six back of Atlantic Division leading Detroit and Toronto. In other words, it’s too soon to be throwing in the towel.
That said, new owners looking to do business their way isn’t anything new and GM Dale Tallon could have new marching orders.
As it is, they’ve got a solid young core with 2013 Calder Trophy winner Jonathan Huberdeau, 2013 first-round pick Aleksander Barkov, defenseman Erik Gudbranson, and goalie Jacob Markstrom. Building off of them has likely been the plan all along.
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
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.