Mikhail Grigorenko

Surprise! Grigorenko refuses to join junior team


The Buffalo Sabres want Mikhail Grigorenko to play hockey and they want him to do it with his junior team, the Quebec Remparts of the QMJHL, as they assigned him there this morning.

Grigorenko apparently has other ideas.

According to Kathleen Lavoie of La Presse (link in French), Grigorenko is refusing to report to Quebec. That report was confirmed by Bill Hoppe of the Olean Times Herald via Grigorenko’s agent, Jay Grossman. The agent wouldn’t comment further until he spoke with the team.

At 19 years old, Grigorenko doesn’t have many options on where to go. He’s too young to be assigned to the AHL and playing junior hockey is essentially his only outlet if he’s not staying in Buffalo. The Sabres have some injuries amongst their forwards, but they want Grigorenko to develop somewhere other than in the NHL. They probably don’t want it to be in the KHL, however.

WATCH LIVE: Lightning at Red Wings

Henrik Zetterberg, Steven Stamkos
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Mike Babcock’s reign with the Detroit Red Wings ended in another first-round defeat, yet it may be lost in time just how close that series was.

Yes, the Tampa Bay Lightning shut down the Red Wings to win Game 7 at home, but Ben Bishop deserves a ton of the credit. The Red Wings snagged the puck for much of the contest, just not enough to beat the big goalie.

While change is in the air in Detroit, the Bolts are largely the same squad that generated a nice showing in the 2015 Stanley Cup Final. We’ll get to see if the Red Wings gain a measure of revenge on NBCSN tonight, with home-ice advantage this time around.


After healthy scratch, Severson vows to play ‘next 80 games’

Jimmy Hayes, Damon Severson
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Damon Severson was a healthy scratch on Saturday.

It’s the last game he wants to miss this season.

“I had a good chat with a few people and just pretty much said, ‘I want to be in the next 80 games,’” Severson said, per The Record. “I sat out my game and that’s all I want to be out for for the year.”

Severson is one of the Devils’ most important young players. But this is also the 21-year-old defenseman’s sophomore season, and that’s when slumps can occur.

Hence, the early message he was sent by the coaching staff.

Severson is expected to be back in the lineup tonight when New Jersey hosts Nashville.

“He doesn’t have to be perfect,” coach John Hynes told reporters. “We’d just like to see him have a high compete level. We know he’s ready to go. We had a couple of good meetings with him. He’s in a good spot mentally. I know he’s ready to roll.”