Darryl Sutter

Sutter says Kings learned lesson after failing to sweep Devils


NEW YORK — You may recall back in 2012 when the Los Angeles Kings had a chance to sweep the New Jersey Devils in the Stanley Cup Final, only to lose Game 4 at Staples Center. The Kings then proceeded to lose Game 5 on the road in Newark, before returning home to close out the series and celebrate their first championship in franchise history.

On Wednesday, the Kings will once again try to complete the sweep in the Cup final, this time at Madison Square Garden versus the Rangers.

So, not surprisingly, Los Angeles coach Darryl Sutter was asked today if there was a difference between the situation two years ago and the one this time around.

“Game 4 was at home [in 2012],” Sutter said. “There was a lot of distraction. I think that was a lesson learned not just for our players but for our whole organization. We were trying to keep our players as a little inner circle, which they still do. But the circle got a little bit of infringement.”

Sutter will obviously be hoping his team can keep its inner circle tight and complete the sweep tomorrow at MSG; otherwise, he’ll have to face questions about not sweeping — which he does not care for — and then if they don’t win Game 5, the questions about pressure will start coming his way — which he does not care for either.

Plus, if the Kings complete the sweep tomorrow, they’ll, you know, win the Stanley Cup.

“Most players, coaches, trainers never get any chance, zero,” said Sutter. “So when you get the opportunity, and I’ve been fortunate to be in quite a few of them, it’s always a testament to the group you have and to understand how tough it is.

“That’s why not many people or teams win it because it’s hard for them to take on the whole challenge of what it is to win and the price you got to pay and the sacrifice you got to make.”

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.