Morning Hits: Chara, Shaw, Lucic, Tavares, Jackman, Gustafsson and Konopka
- Updated: May 16, 2014
- David Pagnotta: Told that Bruins Zdeno Chara had fractured at least on finger during Game 4 of round two against the Canadiens.
- Chicago Blackhawks: Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville expects that forward Andrew Shaw could start skating this weekend. They will have a better idea of when he’ll be able to return after that.
- Andy Strickland: A source said that Andrei Markov had told Milan Lucic to look at Canadien players in the eye when shaking their hands. More disappointing to Strickland was that Claude Julien and Bruins coaching staff didn’t get into the handshake line.
- NHL: Islanders John Tavares has been cleared to begin skating.
- Andy Strickland: Blues defenseman Barret Jackman had off-season wrist surgery, with recovery time expected to be three months.
- Igor Eronko: Flyers defenseman Erik Gustafsson signed with Avangard of the KHL.
- Zenon Konopka on NHLPA: Suspended for 20 games, Sabres Zenon Konopka issued a statement:
“I deeply regret that I have tested positive for a prohibited substance in violation of the NHL/NHLPA Performance Enhancing Substances Program. I accept full responsibility for this error. As a professional athlete I am responsible for what I put in my body, and I am to blame for this mistake.
I want to make it clear that this violation occurred because I ingested a product that can be purchased over-the-counter and which, unknown to me, contained a substance that violated the program. Unfortunately, I did not take the necessary care to ensure that the product did not contain a prohibited substance. I want to stress, however, that I did not take this substance for the purpose of enhancing my athletic performance.
I apologize to my teammates and to the Buffalo Sabres organization, as well as to my friends and family. I have learned a great deal from this experience, something I hope to be able to share with younger players. I will accept this suspension and continue to work hard to prepare for the 2014-15 season.”