Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Afternoon Player Notes in the Draft (Oct 3)

The Boston Bruins may have to start the season with two-way centre Patrice Bergeron, because the all-star suffered a lower-body injury in practice on Tuesday, only a couple days ahead of the season opener, at home to Nashville on Thursday.  Bergeron has been quoted as saying that this isn't related to his off-season hernia surgery, rather it was something different that might need a few days to rest and recover from.  It doesn't sound too significant, but it will cost him some time.

This isn't a great start for Brenda & Seward, as the addition of Bergeron to the list of injuries, means that they will start the season with three bodies on the shelf, albeit for a short period of time.  Erik Karlsson is very close to suiting up for the Senators, while Alex Steen isn't likely ready to play for the Blues until next week.  An early season jump from their healthy players will be needed, so they don't fall behind in the early days of the season.

The expectation of James Neal's availability for opening night was still hanging in the air, thinking it could go one way or the other. But with the Golden Knights roster situation still somewhat fluid, this might work out in their favour. Neal, who is still getting over the last little recovery of his broken hand, which he suffered in the playoffs last year.  Neal reportedly had a little bit of setback during the summer, but his recovery should have him ready to go shortly, as he has been skating with the team in practices.

The Golden Knights will certainly use this opportunity to see a prospect or two, just a little bit longer, but that won't help Dale B. in the short-term, who was certainly hoping for a quick jump out of the gates for the veteran claimed at the expansion draft.

The Nashville Predators are doing up some clever paperwork, possibly to give a prospect an extra day with the team, ahead of the season starting, adding Nick Bonino to the Injured-Non Roster list before the submission deadline for the start of the season.  The last update I had read was that he was ready to play, but felt that a little more rest, ahead of the team's opener on Thursday, would be better for him.  It sounds like he is good to go, but for the sake of being on the list, his status will be changed accordingly.

This doesn't sound like anything for Mike to be concerned about to start the year, which is more than I can say about the other two guys on this list today.  This is good news, that he is indeed ready to go.

The Chicago Blackhawks, one of the teams strapped for cap space, did some maneuvering of their own, sending down four players and two of those players for the sake of a little extra cap relief right away. One of those two extras is forward Alex DeBrincat, who has indeed found a place on the roster for opening night, but there is a minimum amount of players that a team can hold onto the roster and getting an extra day of not spending that cap money here and there can go a long ways.

This is strictly a cap move and DeBrincat will be back with the team (on paper) in time for the team's opening game, no

The same cannot be said about Winnipeg's Kyle Connor, who was sent down to the AHL to cut the roster down to the 23-player limit on Tuesday.  Connor was one of three players that didn't have to clear waivers and was on the bubble to make the team, but his bubble burst early on, but you should expect him to be one of the early favourites for a call-up, be it for injury or to replace one of the other two, who might get off to a slow start.

Unfortunately for Eric, this is his second player to be sent down to the minors and as it was laid out for the 2014 draft, the preseason waiver draft is for injured players only and drafting these young players (or even the older ones), there is a risk that they could be cut and sent down to the minors.  Injuries were the part of the game I wanted to guard against in preseason swaps, so you could start with a healthy lineup.  These players are healthy, but the risk of them not making the roster was realized early on.

I'm not sure how I didn't notice this, but Patric Hornqvist hasn't been available to the Penguins throughout training camp and the preseason for the Penguins, but the team suggests that he isn't very far away, dealing with a hand injury.  Hornqvist may start the year on the Injured Reserve, just to make room for a body, but since he hasn't seen any action yet, the placement would be retroactive and he would be eligible to return at any time.  For now, he's day-to-day, even if he does get an IR placement.

It doesn't sound like it should be too concerning for Mike, who is already dealing with the Bonino injury as well, but this one is a little more serious and could cost him a game, two or maybe even three.  It's hard to say right now, as the Penguins haven't exactly been definitive about the whole thing.
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