Ramblings: Games Resume Saturday, Tarasenko Injury and What It Means (Aug 29)

Ian Gooding

2020-08-29

As you likely already know, the NHL had postponed all its games on Friday, the second consecutive day it had done so. Games will resume today (Saturday) starting bright and early at noon ET (9 a.m. where I live), when the Bruins and Lightning will face off.

To make up for the lost time, teams will need to play more back-to-backs than originally anticipated. Don't be surprised to see some backup goalies, especially if the first game of the B2B goes to OT. For example, both the Philadelphia/NY Islanders series and the Vegas/Vancouver series play Game 3 on Saturday and Game 4 on Sunday, with the start time moved ahead only one hour on Sunday. That means we might get to see Marc-Andre Fleury after all. On the other hand, the 2+ day break might mean that teams are more comfortable with giving the starter both sides of the back-to-back.

As much as I like to have actual hockey games or at least hockey news to write about, the NHL needed to follow the NBA's lead on recognizing the systemic racism issue that plagues our society. Even if that decision took more time to make than it should have.

The NHL could not rightfully form the Hockey Diversity Alliance, and then simply ignore the events of this week. If that happened, the HDA would look like nothing more than lip service. If the goal of the protest is to promote dialogue about the Jacob Blake shooting and race relations in general, then the NHL and its players have succeeded – whether you agree with the two-day pause or not. By many accounts, this break served as a learning opportunity for many in the hockey community who had not experienced racial issues firsthand. Whether these protests lead to any real change remains to be seen, but it's better than sweeping the issue under the carpet.

If you're questioning why a sport like hockey even needs to get involved here, consider the following excerpt from Michael Russo's article in The Athletic last month on Matt Dumba.

As a young hockey player, Dumba recalls being subjected to racism from others. He even heard ignor