NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 19, 2019

by | Apr 19, 2019 | News, NHL | 21 comments

Steve Yzerman named Red Wings GM, Blues push Jets to the brink of elimination, Hurricanes even their series with the Capitals, Sharks stave off elimination,  Lady Byng Trophy finalists revealed, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

The Detroit Red Wings will hold a press conference today to formally announce the hiring of Steve Yzerman as their new general manager. Ken Holland will remain as senior vice president. 

The Detroit Red Wings have hired Steve Yzerman as their new general manager (Photo via NHL.com).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Can’t say I’m surprised by this announcement. Yzerman stepped down last fall as general manager of the Tampa Bay Lightning to return home to Detroit. Holland is signed through 2019-20 and gave no indication he was stepping aside but I think it’s clear that was the Wings plan all along.

Yzerman returns to the Wings with a stellar reputation for building the Lightning into one of the NHL’s top teams. He takes over a roster stocked with promising young talent. It’ll be interesting to see what moves he’ll have in store to advance the Wings’ rebuild. 

One thing Yzerman won’t be doing is replacing the head coach as Jeff Blashill was re-signed earlier this month to a new contract. I wouldn’t be surprised if Yzerman was consulted on this before Blashill was signed. 

NHL.COM: A three-goal third-period comeback lifted the St. Louis Blues to a 3-2 victory over the Winnipeg Jets and a 3-2 lead in their opening-round series.  Brayden Schenn’s game-tying goal was a controversial one for Jets’ fans as it appeared the net was dislodged by Schenn’s teammate Oscar Sundqvist as the puck crossed the goal line. Video review determined Sundqvist was checked into the net by Jets defenseman Dustin Byfuglien and allowed the goal to stand. The Blues can close out the series back in St. Louis for Game 6 on Saturday. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A heartbreaking loss for the Jets after it appeared they were cruising to victory entering the third period. It’s the second time in this series they’ve blown a lead in the third. This one could prove the most costly. 

Petr Mrazek’s 30-save performance carried the Carolina Hurricanes to a 2-1 win over the Washington Capitals in Game 4 of their opening-round series (Photo via NHL Images)

The Carolina Hurricanes squared their opening-round series with the Washington Capitals at two games apiece with a 2-1 victory in Game 4. Teuvo Teravainen’s tiebreaker later in the second period held up as the winning goal. Petr Mrazek made 30 saves for the Hurricanes. It was a costly defeat for the Capitals as winger T.J. Oshie left the game with an upper-body injury in the third period after being checked from behind by Hurricanes forward Warren Foegele. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Foegele received a two-minute boarding minor penalty but it remains to be seen if he’ll face supplemental discipline. Further details on Oshie’s status could be released today but the early word is he could be sidelined for some time. The injury overshadowed what was a solid effort by the Hurricanes in neutralizing the Capitals offense for the second straight game. 

The San Jose Sharks staved off elimination with a 5-2 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 5 of their opening-round series. Tomas Hertl scored twice, Joe Pavelski and Erik Karlsson each had two-point performances, and Martin Jones made 30 saves in a bounce-back performance. The series returns to Las Vegas on Saturday for Game 6 with the Golden Knights holding a 3-2 series lead.

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  That was Jones’ best game of the series. He’ll need two more like that for the Sharks to have a shot at winning this series. Their blueline was also improved as this was the first time since Game 1 that they didn’t give up a goal in the first five minutes. 


Florida Panthers center Aleksander Barkov, Calgary Flames center Sean Monahan, and St. Louis Blues center Ryan O’Reilly are this year’s finalists for the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy, awarded each year to the player “voted to best combine sportsmanship, gentlemanly conduct and ability.”

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning general manager Julien BriseBois is standing by head coach Jon Cooper after his club was swept from the opening round by the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Lightning re-signed Cooper a month ago to a multi-year contract extension. “If I hadn’t re-signed [Cooper] when I did, I’d be looking to re-sign him now,” BriseBois said. “There’s no point looking for the next [Cooper] when I have the original and I like the original and I have faith in the original.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I understand why some unhappy Lightning followers were calling for Cooper to be replaced but that wasn’t going to happen. They aren’t going to fire a guy they just re-signed, especially after he coached them to a record-tying 62-win season. By the sound of things, BriseBois isn’t about to make any drastic moves regarding his club. 

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby has declined an invitation to join Team Canada at the upcoming IIHF World Championships, opting to use the extra time to rest and heal from a long season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Can’t say I blame Crosby. He’s played a lot of hockey since his last appearance at the Worlds in 2015.

WGR 550: Buffalo Sabres center Jack Eichel will suit up for Team USA at the Worlds.  

SEATTLE TIMES: NHL Seattle president and CEO Tod Leiweke admitted costs to renovate KeyArena are expected to top $900 million and will push back the opening date to June 1, 2021. The delay isn’t expected to affect the debut season of Seattle’s NHL expansion team. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Over $900 million for an arena renovation project? Good thing this is privately funded or city taxpayers would have a fit. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: The Canadiens re-signed defenseman Christian Folin to a one-year, one-way contract worth $800K. 


  1. Yzerman will do a good job in that role and I do look forward to the Red Wings returning to prominence again down the road.

    • As a Leaf fan I miss that rivalry.

      All the rumors actually came true.

  2. Well, I was wrong there – thought sure he’d jump at the Seattle job. It’s going to be an interesting draft and early summer for the Red Wings.

    • Ken Holland could be the Seattle guy, George. He’s from Vernon BC and may want to get closer to home.

    • Morning George, I did respond back to you but its been a long day recovering from hernia mesh removal…if any of you know anyone getting it, don’t let them.

      To be fair George not so.much detriments just too many of the same type of player…if I could bring a Boone Jenner and Josh Anderson type to our top 2 lines I’b very happy.

      In any event this ream does not have the right mix of players yet for 4 rounds of playoffs.

      • Oh, I do know someone – I do not envy you! Hope everything goes well.

        I see your point now, and can also see moves like that helping the Leafs IF Dubas can find a trading partner willing to give up a Jenner-type for one of the guys you mentioned. Certainly Kadri’s cap hit is appealing – but in the long run it’s also appealing to the Leafs considering the signings yet to come – now all they need to do is get him some anger management.

      • Hey Gary: Joey Here: I had two mesh surgeries in 2018. One in August that failed and redone again in November. Can’t say I’m too impressed with the whole process at all.
        Back to hockey, the Leaf/Red Wing Rivalry was good and maybe that will once again thrive under Stevie Y.

      • I’ll try this again. Hey Gary : Joey Here: Had two mesh hernia surgeries in 2018. One in August that failed and a redo in November. No fun

        A Red Wing/ Leaf rivalry again would be great

      • @joey Hi Joey if you got mesh make sure you keep an eye on your health..mine was done Oct.2015 and everything was fine till March 2017…then everything went downhill.

        Just search mesh in facebook and many groups with loads of info…I had 6 inches of papers I did on my own.

        Back to regular programming.

  3. You have to wonder if the pens will do there patented tank until were good again something they’ve done over their existence too many times? They’re not cup contenders with that lineup and are the worst team in the league for prospects coming up, I can see them going into full tank mode maybe a little this summer but for sure the summer of 2020

    • You aren’t far wrong when you say they have the worst prospect pool – in that recent published consensus of the Top 100 prospects (NOT yet in the NHL) the Penguins have 0.

    • I hope so. But it won’t happen until Crosby era is over. But once that happens tank job it is! And as a pens fan I’m all about it. Another few fata kraft tarnstrom years for another generational talent is a fair deal to me!

  4. Be a good test of the Florida tax effect on Steve’s team building ability.

  5. George O, your thoughts on Stone comment? Where he said if he wasn’t happy playing hockey he probably be still in Ottawa. (something like that) I take that more of a shot at ownership. Brighter days ahead.

    • Yeah, that’s definitely a back-handed slap across the chops of Eugene. Problem is, any valid criticism rolls off his back like water on a duck. What Dorion needs in the position of Director Of Hockey Operations is a solid buffer between him and Eugene – someone like Brian Burke who’d tell Melnyk to f*&k off and shut up when needed – and get away with it.

      • I also miss Brian Murray.

  6. SPECTOR’S NOTE: Over $900 million for an arena renovation project? Good thing this is privately funded or city taxpayers would have a fit.

    Yes the way it ought to be…you own a team you pay for your building and reap the profits from it…ie cost of doing business like everyone else; none of this people in the city or taxpayers bs pay for a building for a team they don’t own or get any of the profits from.

    • Agreed, Ron. I’m not in favor of taxpayers footing the bill for arenas. If you can afford to own a pro team, you can afford to build or reno a stadium/arena. If you can’t, then rent the existing facility.

    • I generally agree with this but there certainly is some validity to the fact that cities get value out of these teams in tourism name recognition jobs etc. while some of the deals are highly skewed towards wealthy owners at expense of tax payers I do do think some support by local government is appropriate in recognition of the benefits the teams bring.

  7. Congrats Stevie Y

    The job he’s wanted (per many media reports) for years

    Agree with those here who say Holland the more likely initial Seattle GM

    Re: $900 M (and I’m sure that’s $US) to “renovate”…. holy shite-shooter Batman

    Can you imagine what a brand new state of the art arena (from scratch) would have been ???

    Concur on the “proper way/imperative way” that this is funded .,.. privately

    Re: Lady Byng …. fantastic nominee choices!!!

    Re: Sid and not playing for 🇨🇦…, as a fan, I’m sad and he’ll be misers. However, I fully understand his choice

    Re: controversial goal (net off moorings)… certainly a swing in the status of the game and the outcome …. very tough call …. I can ceratainly see the arguments for both “goal” and “no goal” … did the review committee in Toronto do Rock Paper Scissors or flip a coin?

    Re: Oishie injury…. this is a tragic loss. I hate injuries like that…. awkward collision with boards..,, sometimes players bounce right up and continue in the play and other times there are injuries like the one last night

    I had the game taped and therefore watched “live” real time speed; the replays and I rewound and watched it in slow mo

    It was very clear that the Ref had absolutely no original intention that this was a penalty; after he saw the injury (ref had already turned to watch the play evolve then quickly looked back at the crumpled Oishie) that he called the penalty

    Foegele pushes Oishie who is already in motion … and Foegele is clear of the push 7-8’ from the boards

    This is tragic , but in no way does this deserve a review and or suspension

    If he gets any further discipline from the league, IMO, the gross bias cloak (towards favouring Caps) is completely off

    It was only a few days ago that Ovechkin deliberately elbowed to the face with his full weight and inertia; lifting his body up to do it…, he has discipline history … they didn’t even review it. In addition ; it was two days later that they finally rescinded the penalty to Ferland for a clean (IMO) hit

    I reach out to Oishie and hope for his speedy recovery; but I’m firm on my stance that Foegele in NO way deserves further discipline

    Re: Ovi on his post game assertion on the play ; I’m hoping; was just toting the team line and looking out for a team-mate .

    If on the other hand; these were Ovi’s actual heart felt views..,. Then he is a massive hippocrate … Ovi’s actions were deliberate ; aimed directly at the head; and because of his size; weight, strength ,could have knocked someone into the next decade …. just sayin’

  8. Sorry Lyle for the double post: I see how the process works now