Preseason quick recaps – September 30th

NHL.gifHere’s the quick recap of tonight’s preseason action. If you’re a Minnesota Wild fan, you may want to look away. Again.

Buffalo 5 – Montreal 3

Plus: Prospect Luke Adam had two goals for Buffalo in looking good for the Sabres there. He likely won’t make the team, but he’s at least giving them something to keep in mind when they eventually send him back. Thomas Vanek and Tim Connolly scored as well, something the Sabres hope carries into the regular season.

Minus: A pretty lethargic overall effort from Montreal. Yeah, it’s the preseason but don’t some guys have jobs to play for? Montreal’s defense hung Alex Auld out to dry in dealing with 37 shots on goal, stopping 32.

St. Louis 4 – Chicago 1

Plus: Another nice game from the Blues with Alex Steen getting a goal and an assist to keep his preseason scoring run hot. Jaroslav Halak had 30 saves in the win. Ben Smith had the only goal for Chicago.

Minus: Give it up for Hawks prospect Kyle Beach. Yes, he had a fight and that’s one of his jobs, but he ate a -4 on the game. Woof.

Columbus 4 – Minnesota 2

Plus: Solid, all-around team effort from the Blue Jackets getting scoring from four different players. Steve Mason did well stopping 24 shots. Minnesota’s power play did the work for themselves tonight, scoring twice on the man advantage.

Minus: Another loss for the Wild who have yet to win a game in the preseason. Coming off of a bad year, at least winning some meaningless games could give the fans a reason to have some hope. Defensive defenseman Greg Zanon was a -2. When it rains, it pours.

Dallas 2 – Colorado 1

Plus: A comeback win for the Stars who trailed 1-0 with 12 minutes to play until Mike Ribeiro and Brendan Morrow scored to win. Morrow’s game-winner came with just a minute to play.

Minus: Holy cow look at the penalties. Ten penalties a piece for each team and only four of them were coincidental minors. That’s just a brutal way to go through a preseason game.

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    Blackhawks F Katchouk will be sidelined by ankle sprain

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    CHICAGO — Blackhawks forward Boris Katchouk will be sidelined for four to six weeks with a left ankle sprain, the team announced Sunday.

    The 24-year-old Katchouk played almost 12 minutes during a 3-0 preseason loss to Detroit on Saturday night. He was acquired in a multiplayer trade with Tampa Bay in March.

    The Blackhawks open the season on Oct. 12 at Colorado.

    The team also said forward Jujhar Khaira is day to day with a right ankle injury.

    Ducks’ Urho Vaakanainen crashes into boards, leaves on stretcher

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    ANAHEIM, Calif. — Ducks defenseman Urho Vaakanainen was taken off the Honda Center ice on a stretcher after he crashed into the end boards in the first period of Anaheim’s preseason game against the San Jose Sharks.

    The Finnish defenseman was conscious and alert with full movement in his extremities at UCI Medical Center, the Ducks said.

    The frightening incident occurred midway through the opening period when Vaakanainen smashed into the boards at a dangerous speed behind the Sharks’ net. Vaakanainen appeared to be concentrating on the pass he had just made to Derek Grant, who scored the Ducks’ opening goal on the assist.

    Vaakanainen’s teammates came onto the ice and gathered around him as he was taken away on the stretcher.

    The Ducks acquired the 23-year-old Vaakanainen from Boston last March in the deal that sent longtime Ducks defenseman Hampus Lindholm to the Bruins. After recording two assists in 14 games for the Ducks last season, Vaakanainen is attempting to win a top-six role on Anaheim’s defense this fall.

    Lightning donate $2 million to Hurricane Ian relief efforts

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    TAMPA, Fla. — The Tampa Bay Lightning and team owner Jeff Vinik are donating $2 million toward Hurricane Ian relief efforts.

    The NHL team announced that $1 million each will be donated by the Tampa Bay Lightning Foundation and the Vinik Family Foundation.

    “This is a tragic situation for many families and communities across the state of Florida, but especially so in the southwest region of the state,” Vinik said in a statement released by the team. “In times like these the most important thing we can do is support one another, and we hope this donation will help families recover and rebuild in the months to come.”

    Ian made landfall Wednesday on Florida’s Gulf Coast, south of the Tampa Bay area. The Lightning postponed two home preseason games and moved the club’s training camp to Nashville, Tennessee, during the storm.

    Maple Leafs sign defenseman Rasmus Sandin to 2-year deal

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    TORONTO — Rasmus Sandin has signed a two-year, $2.8 million contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs, the club announced on Thursday.

    The 22-year-old from Sweden was the 29th overall selection in the 2018 draft. Sandin had 16 points in 51 games with Toronto last season. He’s played in 88 career regular-season games, with six goals and 22 assists, and has one goal in five playoff games.

    “Got a great set of tools,” fellow defenseman Jake Muzzin said. “With experience, I think they’re only going to get better.”

    The signing comes as the Leafs’ blueliners been hit hard by injuries. Muzzin has been dealing with a back issue, and Timothy Liljegren recently had surgery for a hernia.

    Toronto then lost Jamie Benn (groin) and Carl Dahlstrom (shoulder) in Wednesday’s 3-0 preseason victory over the Montreal Canadiens, pressing forwards Calle Jarnkrok and Alexander Kerfoot into defensive roles for two periods.