NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 18, 2020

by | Jan 18, 2020 | News, NHL | 2 comments

Game recaps, Dougie Hamilton sidelined by a fractured fibula, Dave Backes on waivers, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: Tampa Bay Lightning center Anthony Cirelli tallied his first career NHL hat trick as his club crushed the Winnipeg Jets 7-1. Nikita Kucherov scored twice, Ondrej Palat collected three assists, and Andrei Vasilevskiy picked up his 10th straight win.

Anthony Cirelli’s first NHL hat trick carried the Tampa Bay Lightning over the Winnipeg Jets 7-1 (Photo via NHL Images).

Sidney Crosby scored in overtime as the Pittsburgh Penguins edged the Detroit Red Wings 2-1. He has six points in three games since returning from core muscle surgery. Bryan Rust’s 20th goal of the season tied the game and forced the extra period.

Anaheim Ducks center Sam Steel’s overtime goal lifted his club over the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1. It was the Hurricanes’ first game since losing defenseman Dougie Hamilton to a fractured left fibula. Teammate Jaccob Slavin will replace Hamilton at the upcoming 2020 NHL All-Star Game in St. Louis.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hamilton’s injury leaves a gaping hole in the Hurricanes’ blue line. With 40 points in 47 games, he’s the Canes’ highest-scoring defenseman and was well on his way to a career year. I’ll have more on the Hurricanes in the Rumors section.


SPORTSNET: The Edmonton Oilers are reportedly nearing a contract extension with Zack Kassian. The 28-year-old winger is completing a three-year contract worth $1.95-million annually and is due to become an unrestricted free agent in July. It’s assumed the deal will be announced before the trade deadline on Feb. 24. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kassian’s a big-bodied forward with 20-goal potential who plays a physical style and is popular among his teammates. It’ll be interesting to see how much of a raise he receives. It could be a five-year deal worth $4 million annually.

Nashville Predators winger Viktor Arvidsson was fined $2,000.00 by the league’s department of player safety under the league’s rules regarding diving and embellishment.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON: The Bruins placed veteran winger David Backes on waivers for the purpose of assigning him to their AHL affiliate in Providence.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Backes played infrequently this season due to his injury history and declining performance. His demotion will clear $1 million of his $6-million salary-cap hit from the Bruins’ books for the rest of the season. Backes could be bought out of the final season of his contract in June.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: The Lightning placed defenseman Luke Schenn on waivers.

STLTODAY.COM: St. Louis Blues defenseman Carl Gunnarsson will return to the roster tonight after a 15-game absence in part because of an upper-body injury.

NBC SPORTS: Some good-natured billboard trolling between Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers fans has raised over $50K for various charities.

WINNIPEG SUN: Jets TSN analyst Kevin Sawyer will address criticism regarding comments he made two weeks ago about an apparent hazing incident involving Jared Spurgeon during the Minnesota Wild defenseman’s junior hockey days. “Favourite story of Jared Spurgeon,” Sawyer began. “He was a 15-year-old. Two months into the season we saran-wrapped him to a pillar in the arena, about six feet up in the air … he was tiny. He looked like he was 12.”


  1. This Cirelli kid is turning out to be a nice surprise for TB. A 3rd round pick (72nd overall), after posting19g 20a 39 pts in his first full season last year, he’s on pace for 21g 37a 58 pts.

    That could turn into another headache for BriseBois as he has $73,441,666 committed to 13 players next season, leaving him $8,058,334 to sign 10 or $10,558,334 IF the cap goes to $84 mil.

    Most of that modest increase if it comes about will go to RFAs Mitchell Stephens ($833,333) and Carter Verhaeghe ($700,000) whose combined $1,533,333 cap hit should go up slightly to around $2 mil should they be retained.

    But his other 3 RFAs are a different story with Cirelli ($728,333), Cernak ($697,500) and Sergachev ($894,166) likely each seeking much larger increases. Their current combined cap hit of $2,319,999 will probably come closer to $7 mil which whittles Brisebois’ cap space to around $1.5 mil. And he also has UFAs Maroon ($900,000), Shattenkirk ($1,750,000) and Rutta ($1,300,000) to either re-sign or replace.

    He’s probably looking at another long drawn-out RFA negotiation or two along the lines of Point leading up to this season.

    • Agree George

      Cerelli a great “new” addition so to speak

      Great speed; great hands; spirited

      Yes they (Bolts)will have Cap issues but they are minor compared to Leafs; AND have a much better trove of picks/prospects to work with to help shuffle the deck

      This recent “awakening” by Bolts should make teams be very wary ….

      The recent surge; plus Cap space; plus prospects in the pipeline AND 2 firsts!!!!

      Yes Im jealous☹️