Pittsburgh Penguins star Sidney Crosby told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette that he thought Shawn Thornton’s incident with Brooks Orpik was “terrible,” but his overall assessment of the situation was pretty level-headed.
For one thing, he gave a pretty reasonable explanation for why he believes Orpik had the right to reject a fight following his big hit on Loui Eriksson.
” … For [Orpik], he’s got to play 25 minutes a night against the other team’s players. For him to fight, probably isn’t going help us,” Crosby said. “I don’t think he has to punish our team because he’s made a big hit on some guy. I don’t think [it makes] sense for him to fight there. But that happens. Every team responds like that for the most part. Sometimes guys go, sometimes they don’t. There are other ways to respond.”
Ultimately, it sounds like Crosby’s issue isn’t with Thornton attempting to fight Orpik. Instead, it’s about how he went about doing it (which Thornton has profusely apologized about, by the way).
“I don’t see a problem with Thornton going over to [Orpik] and asking him to fight. That’s the response,” Crosby said. “But to do what he did was totally unnecessary. It’s terrible. I’m sure he knows that more than everybody. He’s made a living at protecting his teammate and sticking up for them. But to confront [Orpik] and ask him to fight, I think every team wants a player like that. There’s nothing wrong with that. But to do what he did to him is not acceptable.”
Word is that we’ll find out if the NHL agrees – and to what degree, as far as how long a potential suspension may be – on Wednesday.
In case you want to see how they fare without Orpik, Crosby’s Penguins face the Columbus Blue Jackets on NBCSN Monday.
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.