Instead of Tuesday being about Dustin Penner getting revenge on Ryan Garbutt – a narrative Penner rejected, anyway – the Dallas Stars’ 6-3 win against the Anaheim Ducks was all about Garbutt.
Well, Garbutt’s line at least. The Stars’ depth players managed to shine the brightest on NBCSN; Garbutt scored a goal and two assists, Antoine Roussel found the net twice and Vernon Fiddler collected a pair of helpers.
Stars backup Dan Ellis managed a win against his former team, stopping 28 out of 31 saves for his second win of the 2013-14 campaign.
Penner didn’t avenge Garbutt, yet he kept his strong play going, scoring a goal in tonight’s explosive third period. Jonas Hiller probably didn’t bump his trade value/standing on the team much with his performance, especially considering the fact that he allowed three goals in less than a minute to let this one get away.
(Whether they were his fault or could be blamed on the Ducks’ defense, that doesn’t look good.)
The Stars ended a two-game losing streak (an four-game skid at home) with the win, bouncing back from Saturday’s 6-1 loss to Detroit. The Stars host Chicago on Friday and Edmonton on Sunday, so this is an opportunity for Dallas to get into the thick of things. The Stars are 12-9-2 on the season.
The Ducks had a two-game winning streak coming into tonight’s loss, but they’ve been struggling big picture. They’re now 2-4-2 in their last eight games, bumping their record down to a still-impressive 17-7-3 mark on the season.
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.