Canada Announces Men's Olympic Hockey Team

Mike Babcock can tinker with Canadian lineup in final preliminary game

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It’s Canada against Finland to see which nation emerges as the top team in Group B in the preliminary round, and yet most of the attention will be on Mike Babcock and his lineup decisions for Sunday’s game.

Babcock, the Canadian head coach, has already made it known he will once again tinker with the lineup for this final preliminary game, with defenseman Dan Hamhuis and forward Patrick Sharp coming back in. Now, who on that roster comes out and sits?

And who starts in goal – Roberto Luongo, who had a shutout against Austria, or Carey Price, who allowed one goal against Norway?

It remains a guess as of right now. But with one game left until the medal round, Babcock is afforded the luxury of dressing some players, sitting others and mixing his lines to finds the combinations that will work.

“Believe me, these decisions aren’t easy,” Babcock said, as per “They’re difficult because they’re personal, because it’s about a player. When you have an interaction with a player, that’s personal. But it’s not about them. It’s about our country and it’s about making the right decisions.

“Now, if it’s not broke, why fix it? After Game 1 you could have said the lineup’s fine, but we had that opportunity. So you’re right in assuming it’s getting…let’s face it, right away it’s Game 7. But we have one more game that it isn’t.”

Jason Demers tweets #FreeTorres, gets mocked

Los Angeles Kings v San Jose Sharks - Game One

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.

Bruins list Chara on IR, for now

Zdeno Chara

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’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.