In today’s NHL morning coffee headlines: Game recaps, including a milestone for Patrik Elias, Bruins ownership unhappy with their club’s performance and updates on Zach Parise, David Perron and Anthony Duclair.
STLTODAY.COM: David Backes scored four goals and Brian Elliott made 23 saves to lead the St. Louis Blues to a 6-0 rout of the Arizona Coyotes.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues seems to be playing with more confidence since Elliott returned from injury. Their recent improvement is silencing the trade speculation which recently dogged them.
THE DENVER POST: Semyon Varlamov made 54 saves to carry his Colorado Avalanche to a 2-0 upset of the Chicago Blackhawks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: When Varlamov is healthy and on his game there are few goalies better in the NHL right now. The problem this season is Varlamov’s been hampered by injury, which is why the Avalanche are currently outside the Western Conference playoff picture.
NJ.COM: Patrik Elias collected his 1,000th career NHL point, along with his 601st assist and 399th goal, to lead the New Jersey Devils to a 4-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres.
THE TENNESSEAN: Third-period goals by Mike Fisher and Roman Josi lifted the Nashville Predators to a 3-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
SAN JOSE MERCURY NEWS: Marc-Edouard Vlasic tallied his second straight game-winning goal as the San Jose Sharks edged the Minnesota Wild 4-3 in overtime. The Wild were playing without Zach Parise, who is currently spending time with his ailing father, J.P. Parise, whose health is deteriorating due to stage four lung cancer.
THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Nick Foligno collected a career-high three assists as the Columbus Blue Jackets doubled up the Dallas Stars 4-2.
NOTE: Games involving Canadian NHL teams are recapped in “Canadian Corner.”
THE BOSTON GLOBE: Bruins new CEO Charlie Jacobs isn’t pleased with his club’s poor performance this season, calling it “a complete failure.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Jacobs’ comments has stoked speculation of changes in the Bruins front office and behind bench if the club fails to reach the playoffs this season. Expect the trade rumors swirling about the Bruins to heat up in the coming weeks if they fail to make significant improvement.
DETROIT FREE PRESS: Red Wings coach Mike Babcock deflected speculation he might sign with the Toronto Maple Leafs this summer following yesterday’s news about the Leafs firing head coach Randy Carlyle. He maintains he remains happy in Detroit. Babcock’s contract expires at season’s end, generating considerable speculation over his plans.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ll have more on the Leafs in the aftermath of their coaching change in the “Canadian Corner” and “Rumors” sections.
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: New Penguins winger David Perron is quickly finding his niche with his new club. Perron was acquired last week in a trade with the Edmonton Oilers.
NEW YORK POST: The Rangers have decided to send rookie forward Anthony Duclair back to his junior team, the Quebec Remparts, for the remainder of the season. The earliest he can return this season is if the Rangers reach the Stanley Cup Final.