The St. Louis Blues will have a key cog back in the lineup tomorrow against Anaheim.
Alex Steen, out since Dec. 21 with a concussion, was activated from injured reserve on Friday and will suit up for the first time in 11 games on Saturday when the Blues host the Ducks, the club announced.
Steen, 29, was in the midst of a career year prior to getting hurt. He had 24 goals through his first 35 games — challenging Alex Ovechkin for the NHL lead — and was rewarded handsomely with a three-year, $17.4 million extension in mid-December.
In early January, Steen was one of the 14 forwards named to the Swedish Olympic team.
Steen’s return to the lineup couldn’t come at a better time. The Blues have lost two of three and mustered just four goals over that span, and are facing a touch stretch of their schedule that begins with Saturday’s game against the NHL-leading Ducks, followed by a four-game road swing through Detroit, New Jersey and both New York teams (Islanders and Rangers).
As for how the Blues plan to incorporate Steen back into the lineup?
You probably know the drill: injury updates are murky in the NHL basically from the moment a puck drops.
We’ll learn more once the 2015-16 season begins, but at the moment, Saturday might have served as a costly night for the Tampa Bay Lightning. Both Tyler Johnson and Alex Killorn went down with injuries stemming from a 3-2 pre-season win against the Florida Panthers.
“Guys were dropping like flies,” Steven Stamkos told the Tamba Bay Times.
These could be minor situations – just about any ailment will sideline a key asset this time of year – yet one cannot help but wonder if the Lightning might limp into this campaign.
Nikita Kucherov is dealing with his own issues, so that means at least minor issues for one half of the Bolts’ top six forwards.
It’s believed that more will be known about these banged-up Bolts sometime on Sunday.
With knee issues still limiting him, Raffi Torres isn’t as mobile as he once was. Apparently he still moves well enough to leave the usual path of destruction.
It’s the pre-season, so it’s unclear if we’ll get a good look at the check, but Torres received a match penalty for his hit on Anaheim Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg.
Most accounts were pretty critical of the San Jose Sharks’ chief troublemaker:
It’s too early to tell if Silfverberg is injured. If he is, that’s a significant loss for the Ducks, as he really showed signs of fulfilling his promise (especially during the 2015 playoffs).
As far as Torres goes, he’s hoping to play in the Sharks’ season-opener. Wherever he ends up, he’ll certainly make plenty of enemies on the ice.
Whether it was because of that hit or just the general distaste shared by those sides, it sounds like tonight’s Sharks – Ducks exhibition is getting ugly, in general:
This post will be updated if video of the hit becomes available, and also if we get a better idea of Silfverberg’s condition.
Update: Bullet dodged?