The Ottawa Senators will welcome back their captain and best player tomorrow night against the Vancouver Canucks, according to head coach Guy Boucher (via Ian Mendes of TSN). That’s a huge step for the Senators, though they haven’t seemed to need it yet. Ottawa is still undefeated in regulation, and have won their last two games with a combined score of 12-1.
Still, Karlsson is among the top handful of players in the league and will really stabilize a defense corps that has had some moving parts throughout the first few games. Nine different defensemen have already suited up for at least one game, with a ton of responsibility being heaped on the trio of Dion Phaneuf, Cody Ceci and Fredrik Claesson. Each of them are averaging at least 21 minutes a night, something that will likely change with as Karlsson gets his legs under him. Last year the captain averaged almost 27 minutes while finishing second in Norris voting.
- Patrik Nemeth has left the Colorado Avalanche on their road trip and flown back to Denver for more tests according to Adrian Dater of BSN Denver. Nemeth suffered a shoulder injury while fighting former teammate Tyler Seguin in a game on Saturday night. Nemeth, who was claimed off waivers just before the season started, has been one of the Avalanche’s best defensemen in the early going.
- David Schlemko was expected back in the Montreal lineup this week, but is not with the team in San Jose according to Renaud Lavoie of TVA Sports. The Canadiens take on the Sharks tomorrow night and then will head to Anaheim and Los Angeles before returning home. The 30-year old played one game on a conditioning stint in Laval and was immediately recalled to the team, but still hasn’t suited up for the Canadiens this season.