I think we are about to find out what happens if one team has a couple of players who were irresponsible. The Stanley Cup favorite Boston Bruins are up to nine players who are “unfit to play.” The Pittsburgh Penguins had an entertaining scrimmage on Saturday but a bit of drama unfolded during the second half. The Colorado Avalance did not have a great start to their scrimmage and head coach Jared Bednar stopped play to let them know.
First, the Pittsburgh Penguins news. Who looked good in the scrimmage and who didn’t? Well one player really had a rough day (PHN+)
Early in the second half of the scrimmage, Sidney Crosby grabbed his stick and went to the locker room. Head coach Mike Sullivan could not comment, per league rules (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)
Coaches cannot comment on injuries in Phase 3 and Phase 4. There is not a rule preventing comment on equipment issues, so we can deduce Crosby’s absence was physical.
Stick tap to The Athletic beat writer Josh Yohe — sources told him it was physical, but believed Crosby was merely taking precautions (The Athletic, Subscription required)
The NHL playoffs and Stanley Cup tournament will provide UFAs one last chance to impress and earn a fat payday in October (The Score)
After a four-day absence, which spawned league-wide intrigue, Marc-Andre Fleury returned to Vegas Golden Knights camp. Now the question is: Is he the VGK goalie, or is Robin Lehner? (Vegas Sun)
Truth? Lehner may be the better choice here, but no one wants to say that, and no one wants to make the case. Lehner was a wall against the Penguins and his snarling attitude is the closest to Tom Barrasso (in his prime). Fleury didn’t have a great season and unless he is razor-sharp in practice, Lehner is the guy.
Of course, that opens a whole can of worms about the Vegas future in goal as Lehner is a UFA. And if Fleury is sharp in camp, ride that hot hand for all its worth (and don’t pull him in the conference final).
National Hockey Now
NINE Boston Bruins are on the “unfit to play” list. NINE?! The list includes David Pastrnak who was seen breaking quarantine and has been re-quarantined. (Boston Hockey Now)
Not a great start to the Boston defense of the Wales Trophy. The Boston “nine” now rival the Pittsburgh Penguins “nine” who are in voluntary-quarantine, It should be noted that all of the Penguins being quarantined suffered secondary exposure to COVID-19, while it is only presumed that many of the Boston players are doing the same.
About halfway through the Colorado Avalanche scrimmage, head coach Jared Bednar blew the whistle. Then he blew a gasket over his team’s effort. Colorado Hockey Now’s new No. 2. on beat writer Scott MacDonald was there (Colorado Hockey Now)
Can the Florida Panthers power play catch fire? They’ll need it to beat the New York Islanders (Florida Hockey Now)