John Carlson

Oates on Carlson: ‘I think the Olympics will energize him’


Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson will be making his first trip to the Olympics to represent the United States.

As Katie Carrera of The Washington Post shares, Caps coach Adam Oates believes playing on the big stage in Sochi will make him a better player down the stretch

“I don’t worry about it based on [workload] because I think the Olympics will energize him,” Coach Adam Oates said. “I think he’ll zero his focus in again…. You’re going to play with the best players in the world at the highest level. So for one week I think it will, if nothing else, re-energize him.”

Carlson, 24, has played internationally before in the World Junior Championships, but incorporating the condensed NHL schedule and the jam-packed Olympic schedule could be an issue for some players.

This season, Carlson has 10 goals and 23 points in 59 games. He trails only Mike Green among defensemen on the team in scoring. If he can pick up his play following the Olympics, the Capitals could sure use the lift as they’re one point back of the final wild card spot in the East.

Dropping like flies: Johnson, Killorn hurt in Bolts’ exhibition

Montreal Canadiens v Tampa Bay Lightning - Game One
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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.

Raffi Torres gets match penalty for being Raffi Torres

Raffi Torres

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?