The Columbus Blue Jackets lost their fifth consecutive game – all in regulation – as the New York Rangers beat them 4-2 on Thursday. It’s no surprise that plenty of Blue Jackets were venting … head coach Todd Richards just happened to be the most eloquent about it, as the Columbus Dispatch’s Aaron Portzline reports.
“Before anyone asks a question, I want to say that was embarrassing hockey,” Richards said. “Embarrassing hockey.”
(Imagines reporters putting a line through Q1: “Was that embarrassing hockey?”)
Richards said he might need to take a more hands-on approach because his messages don’t seem to be getting through.
“I guess the gloves have got to come off,” Richards said. “Obviously I’ve got to push, I’ve got to challenge, because it’s not coming from within.”
It wasn’t as if he was just getting blank stares in the locker room, as Portzline notes that Brandon Dubinsky was “venting” in the locker room after the game.
The 4-2 loss involved some insult-to-injury moments, particularly an own goal via Mark Letestu, who said it left him “sick to his stomach.”
Perhaps this is simply what happens when Sergei Bobrovsky can’t stand on his head?
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.