Henrik Zetterberg

GM Holland hopeful Zetterberg will start skating next week

The Detroit Red Wings just got Pavel Datsyuk back on Friday. Could captain Henrik Zetterberg’s be next?

Zetterberg underwent back surgery and his return isn’t imminent. Still, he might be able to take a big step forward soon.

“I don’t want to overplay this,” Red Wings GM Ken Holland said, per the Detroit News. “We’re hopeful that when we return from our games in Buffalo and Pittsburgh, Hank might be ready, in some form, to begin skating.

“I don’t know if it’ll be all out, or in what form. But we think he could be ready.”

The 33-year-old forward was initially expected to miss at least eight weeks, which the Detroit Free Press noted would set him up for an April 18-19 return. In other words, he won’t be available for Game 1 of the first round — assuming that the Red Wings hold onto their Wild Card spot — but he might be able to join them before the opening series is over.

Detroit has dealt with more than its fair share of injuries this season, to the point where only four players on the team have even played in 70 games. The Red Wings’ fortunes seem to be reserving though, making them a potentially dangerous playoff opponent.

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 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.