With the game on the line Thursday against the Toronto Maple Leafs, Dustin Brown was on the bench.
That’s where he remained for the final seven minutes of the third period in what was a 3-2 Toronto victory over Brown and the Kings. And now, due to illness, he might not be in the lineup for the Kings when they take on the Anaheim Ducks in an all-California Pacific Division showdown Saturday.
At least, that’s according to a report from LA Kings Insider.
He talked about Thursday’s benching earlier in the day. It was another tough situation to find himself in, in what has been an overall difficult 2013-2014 season.
Brown has only 12 goals on the season. Previously, his lowest total in a season in which he played more than 40 regular season games was 14, back in 2005-06.
“As a player you’re not happy but, he’s the coach and I’m the player and that’s how it works,” Brown said, as per NHL.com.
“We discussed it briefly. It’s one of those things where, as a player I can contribute more and he thought our line was not as good.
“I haven’t had a very good year. I’m the first one to say that. I think coming out of the Olympic break I’ve been playing a lot better, feeling a lot better. My mindset’s just different. Now it’s just about working my way back to where I’m capable of playing. I’ve always done PK. Again … I’ve got to work my way back into it.”
Updated: As per Helene Elliott of the L.A. Times, Brown is scratched from the Kings’ lineup.
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.