Sharks forward Raffi Torres has reportedly cleared waivers, according to Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman.
The 34-year-old was forced to sit out the first 41 games of the season because he was suspended for his hit on Ducks forward Jakob Silfverberg (above).
Torres also missed all of last season with a torn ACL. A year and a half later, his knee is still believed to be giving him some trouble.
While serving his suspension, Torres underwent a subchondroplasty procedure (a scope to clean up scar tissue), per CSN’s Kevin Kurz.
According to Kurz, the plan is for Torres to stay with San Jose’s AHL affiliate.
His days as an everyday NHLer might be over.
The San Jose Sharks have placed veteran winger Raffi Torres on waivers, per TSN.
Torres, 34, has yet to play in a game this year after missing 41 contests to a suspension for hitting Anaheim’s Jakob Silfverberg in the head. Torres is also dealing with lingering knee issues, but had recovered enough to join San Jose’s AHL affiliate on a conditioning stint in mid-January.
More, from the Mercury News:
Torres, whose two-week conditioning assignment with the Barracuda expired earlier this week, was still recovering from knee surgery he had in December. After he was eligible to return from his 41-game suspension, Torres played two games for the Sharks’ AHL affiliate before he suffered what Sharks coach Pete DeBoer said was a minor setback.
Torres missed the Barracuda’s three games last week, but returned to practice with the team on Monday and played for the Barracuda on Wednesday night, registering one shot on goal in what was a 3-0 loss to the Texas Stars.
Torres is in the last of a three-year, $6 million deal with a $2M average annual cap hit. Given his age and health problems — his surgically repaired ACL has undergone a variety of procedures over the last two years, and cost him all of the ’14-15 campaign — Torres seems unlikely to be claimed.
Should he clear, the Sharks would (presumably) send him back to the American League, so he can continue working back into game shape.
When Ben Smith was placed on waivers today, some saw it as a sign that Raffi Torres was about to return to the San Jose Sharks’ lineup.
In fact, Torres remains with AHL San Jose on a conditioning stint. And per CSN Bay Area, he was unable to play Monday for the Barracuda, then missed practice Tuesday.
“I know he had a minor setback and then he didn’t play the other night,” said Sharks coach Pete DeBoer. “Where he’s at, as of today, I don’t know.”
Torres did manage to play two AHL games before his “minor setback.” He didn’t register a point in either.
A pending unrestricted free agent, the 34-year-old admitted earlier this month that his lingering knee issues may force him to retire.
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?
Raffi Torres has missed almost the entire season with a knee injury, but it looks like the San Jose Sharks will get him back when it matters the most.
The gritty and controversial forward participated in Friday’s optional practice and might return as early as Wednesday’s game against the Anaheim Ducks.
“I think [Anaheim] would be a good first game if we were going to play him,” Sharks coach Todd McLellan said. “Raffi’s proven earlier that he can come back and play, and play well. … We want him in our lineup and as soon as he’s capable of playing without re-injuring and maintaining that, he’s going in.”
The possibility of him suffering a setback is likely a major concern. The 32-year-old originally returned from a torn ACL on Feb. 27. He got off to a hot start with three goals in his first two games, but he only lasted five contests before he was back on the sidelines.
“The ultimate goal is to have him 100 percent ready to go for playoffs,” McLellan said.
Rookie forward Tomas Hertl also was on the ice Friday as he prepares for a possible return during the playoffs. Getting both of them back would significantly bolster the Sharks depth as they get ready for a probable first round series against the Los Angeles Kings.