NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 6, 2017

by | May 6, 2017 | News, NHL | 12 comments

Ducks right wing Corey Perry, right, watches the puck go past Edmonton goalie Cam Talbot for the winning goal in the fifth period of the Stanley Cup Playoffs in Anaheim on Friday, May 5, 2017. (Photo by Paul Rodriguez, Orange County Register/SCNG)

Ducks push Oilers to brink of elimination, Blues force Game 6 against Predators & more in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: Corey Perry’s double-overtime goal capped a stunning 4-3 comeback victory by the Anaheim Ducks over the Edmonton Oilers in Game 5 of their second-round series. The Oilers held a 3-0 lead late in the third period, but the Ducks pulled goalie John Gibson and rallied on goals by Ryan Getzlaf, Cam Fowler and Rickard Rakell. 

The tying goal proved controversial, as Ducks center Ryan Kesler appeared to interfere with Oilers goalie Cam Talbot, but it was allowed following video review. Leon Draisaitl, Connor McDavid and Drake Cagglula scored for the Oilers, who are now down three games to two and facing elimination as the series returns to Edmonton on Sunday. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A heartbreaking loss for the Oilers, who seemed to have this game in the bag until the Ducks pulled Gibson late in the third. I think Kesler interfered with Talbot on the game-tying goal, but he was checked into the Oilers goalie by one of his own defensemen. Not saying that excuses it, but it explains why the ruling went the way it did.

Had the Oilers played better defensively after the Ducks pulled their goalie, it wouldn’t have set the stage for that game-tying goal. Full marks to the Ducks for battling back and refusing to quit. However, when a team coughs up a three-goal lead with just over three minutes remaining in the third after the opponent has pulled the goalie, it isn’t the result of bad luck, fluky bounces or missed calls. It’s because they played poorly in their own zone. 

Jaden Schwartz’s goal early in the third period was the winner as the St. Louis Blues defeated the Nashville Predators 2-1 to stave off elimination in their second-round series. The Predators still hold a 3-2 lead as the series returns to Nashville for Game 6 on Sunday. 

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby (concussion) skated in a full-contract practice with his teammates on Friday. While his return for Game 5 today against the Washington Capitals isn’t guaranteed, Crosby isn’t ruling out the possibility. He also insists he’s not rushing his return. “I felt pretty good right on from the next day to now,” Crosby said. “Probably as good as you could expect.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With the Penguins up 3-1 in the series and poised to eliminate the Capitals, Crosby’s potential return to the lineup could be a determining factor that decides the outcome of Game 5. 

CSN MID-ATLANTIC: Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin practiced on the third line on Friday in advance of tonight’s crucial game against the Penguins. Head coach Barry Trotz explained he was looking at shaking up his club’s scoring while also spreading their offensive weapons throughout the lineup. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: To Ovechkin’s credit, he didn’t kick up a fuss over this obvious demotion. Whether he stays on the third line for long or the experiment actually improves the Capitals’ scoring remains to be seen. 

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks cautions the New York Rangers not to be overconfident entering Game 5 today in their series with the Ottawa Senators. The Rangers overcame a 2-0 series deficit with two convincing wins on home ice. 

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: A week after acquiring goaltending Scott Darling from the Chicago Blackhawks, the Carolina Hurricanes announced they signed him to a four-year, $16.6-million contract. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s a big raise for Darling, who goes from an annual cap hit of just over $587K with the Blackhawks to $4.15 million annually. The 28-year-old netminder was a solid backup with the Blackhawks, posting a career record of 39-17-9 with a 2.37 goals-against average, a .923 save percentage with four shutouts.

The Hurricanes obviously believe Darling is ready to become a full-fledged NHL starter. If he pans out this will be a steal of a deal for them. This signing also means Darling will be protected in the expansion draft, leaving Cam Ward and Eddie Lack exposed. If they’re passed over by the Vegas Golden Knights, one of them could be shopped in the trade market or bought out. 

PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Former NHL player Kevin Stevens “was sentenced Thursday in U.S District Court in Boston to three years’ probation and fined $10,000” after pleading guilty to illegally selling prescription painkillers. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Stevens is fortunate not to serve jail time for this. He’s had a difficult life since his playing career ended. Here’s hoping he can get back on track. 



  1. 3-0 lead with the other team’s net empty – and blow it. Now THAT is choking that will rank right up there with the Leafs 4-1 blown lead in Boston..

    • Randy Carlyle’s revenge…..

  2. Tough loss for the Oilers. Like many, I believe there was interference on Talbot; but the problem was how the Oilers fell apart after the first of 3 empty net goals was scored with under 5 minutes left in the game.

  3. The Oilers got jobbed. (Choked, too, but they would have survived that if they didn’t get jobbed).

    Yes, Getzlaf was knocked into the crease, but he made zero effort to get out of the way and his glove was wrapped around Talbot’s leg pad when the puck trickled through it.

    Kunitz bumps into Holtby when the puck is already in the crease and that gets waived off, but Getzlaf lays in the crease for multiple seconds when the puck isn’t there and holds the goalies leg pad and that’s just fine…?

    Just start actually flipping coins on the ice to decide the calls if this is the best you can do.

    • It was Kessler not Getzlaf, wasn’t it?

      • Kesler, yeah. Mixed up my right shot veteran Ducks forwards.

        That was as obvious a no goal as I’ve seen and (while hard to detect in real time) it was actually a penalty, not just a waive off.

        He knew full well what he was doing.

    • There is no light at the end of that tunnel. Bad call on 1 goal might have been a cause for angst had it been 1-0 – but THREE NOTHING with the net empty?

  4. Kesler is holding Talbot’s pad….this is a bad call. You can see Talbot trying to move and he is pulling Kesler with him.

    Regardless this was an all-time Oilers loss

  5. The fact is , they are 14 seconds away from bending but not breaking . Had the right call been made yeah they bent pretty bad , but didn’t break , the zebras took care of that again . The ducks are a more complete , experienced team this season , and it is the Shame the zebras are eliminating the small margins of error they have when they play well . The oilers and talbot when not being interfered with have done enough to be up 3-2 heading back to Edmonton . The zebras had other ideas .

  6. Ironic that the guy complaining about the refs the most on Edmonton was the same guy that ran Ryan Miller, knocked him out for a month and laughed about it afterward.

    Too bad

  7. Before video review a bad call was human error. It is a fast game and the refs have a tough job – so you could accept the errors and move on.

    Video review was to eliminate “human error”. With numerous camera angles, slow motion replay etc. and two refs plus a situation room looking at all of this the correct calls should consistently be made. The video should also support the decision made or those deemed inconclusive. More often than not the video seems to contradict the decision that is made. It is comical to watch the commentators on TV try to support the decisions that are rendered by the HNL on these plays. To be objective the media should assemble every goal that has been reviewed in the play-offs and the decision made – I bet it won’t look good on the league. That said the media needs its sources inside the league offices, so I doubt this will happen. Commentators keep saying they are concerned this could happen in “game 7 of the Stanley Cup final” – yet right now these errors are determining who gets to play for the Stanley Cup in the first place – that is just as bad. There is no excuse for these errors in the video review era and that leads people to question the integrity of the league.

  8. “Kesler interfered with Talbot on the game-tying goal, but he was checked into the Oilers goalie by one of his own defensemen. Not saying that excuses it, but it explains why the ruling went the way it did.”

    Actually, it does excuse it. The rule specifically says that its not interference if the “If an attacking player has been pushed, shoved, or fouled by a
    defending player so as to cause him to come into contact with the goalkeeper” The rule doesn’t say that once pushed into the goalie, the player has to immediately vacate. And if you think Kesler had that obligation, than explain how he was supposed to do that with Nurse hanging on him AND without further interfering – it’s not like he can magically stand up while on skates.

    I’m really tired of so called experts giving opinions on the play without any discussion of what the rule actually says. It’s just lazy. If you think it SHOULD be interference, then criticize the rules, not the call/refs. Everyone acknowledges Kesler was pushed into the crease – even the Edmonton coaches and players. Under the rules, the refs made the right call.