NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 24, 2020

by | Jan 24, 2020 | News, NHL | 14 comments

PHWA midseason award winners, All-Star Game skills competition participants announced, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid is the midseason favorite for the Hart Trophy (Photo via NHL Images).

The Professional Hockey Writers Association announced their 2019-20 Midseason NHL Award winners. Among them are  Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (Hart Trophy), Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson (Norris Trophy), Winnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck (Vezina Trophy), and Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar (Calder Trophy). The PWHA also named Toronto Maple Leafs winger William Nylander as their comeback player of the year.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Barring serious injury or a significant decline in performance, McDavid is a lock for the Hart, Carlson for the Norris, and Makar for the Calder. Hellebuyck’s had an outstanding first half, but he’s struggled of late, which could affect his Vezina chances over the remainder of the season.

Participants for the skills competition for the upcoming 2020 NHL All-Star Game in St. Louis were announced yesterday.

CALGARY SUN: The upcoming All-Star game is a family affair for Flames winger Matthew Tkachuk and Ottawa Senators winger Brady Tkachuk. The brothers grew up watching their father Keith play for the St. Louis Blues in the early 2000s until his retirement in 2010.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE: The effects of Kendall Coyne Schofield’s participation in the skills competition at the 2019 NHL All-Star Game are examined in a new documentary.

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: San Jose Sharks owner Hasso Plattner voiced his support of general manager Doug Wilson despite the club’s disappointing season. “While we are all very disappointed in the team’s performance thus far this season, Doug has a long history of leading our team to success,” said Plattner. He pointed to the club’s quick turnaround under Wilson after missing the playoffs in 2015.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I don’t doubt Plattner’s confidence of Wilson, but I think the Sharks GM is facing the biggest challenge of his management career. He’s saddled himself with expensive veterans and doesn’t have much to draw upon in the prospect pipeline for trade bait.

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs assigned defenseman Jake Muzzin to their AHL affiliate on a conditioning stint.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Muzzin’s imminent return is good news for a Leafs blueline that’s struggled in his absence.

CBS SPORTS: The Pittsburgh Penguins activated defenseman Justin Schultz off injured reserve.

TSN: Marc Methot believes his playing career has come to an end. He underwent knee surgery a year ago while with the Dallas Stars, but the knee continues giving him pain. The 13-year NHL veteran spent five seasons with the Ottawa Senators. Methot said he hasn’t made an official decision yet on his future.


  1. I think you mean Carlson for the Norris, not the Hart.

    • Isn’t that precisely what he says?

  2. After what he went through to rehab his severe knee injury, McDavid deserves the Comeback Player of The Year award.

    • BCLeafFan

      My sentiments exactly

      WW for this over McD …. mind friggin’ boggling

      They first told McD …. surgery and min 10 months

      He opted for extensive rehab …. very risky …. and beat all odds and time-frames; and sits first in entire league in points

      WW had nowhere to go but up; and is playing at his contract value now (didn’t have training camp last year which did hamper stats last year)

      It’s a crazy 0ne!!

      • Its called Leaf bias.
        It’s real, and its pathetic.

  3. Kudos to the PWHA for creating the Rod Langway Award: “to the defenseman who best excels in the defensive aspect of the game”

    Wondering why only 3 defenseman have ever won the Lady Byng and if Slavin had any votes.

    The Norris Trophy “to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game.” Should be changed to “to the forward who best excels in the defensive aspects of the game but can also score” to match the way the PWHA votes. I’ve often wondered who the players would vote for as the best “defensive” forward.

  4. The comeback player award, isn’t it The Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy? The Bill Masterton Memorial Trophy is awarded annually to the National Hockey League player who best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship, and dedication to ice hockey. It is often awarded to a player who has come back from career– or even life-threatening illness or injury.
    How is that Nylander? Nylander had a poor season last year because he CHOSE to sit out for 2 months.
    I just went through the NHL trophies and awards and couldn’t find a trophy named “The Comeback Player of the Year”

    • How about “The Bounce Back Award?”

  5. Neither Nylander or McDavid came back from anything.
    Nylander was a contract squabble.
    And how much time did McDavid miss.

    • Wow! Do you even venture outside the leaf bubble?

      • No , no reason too , I love the leaf bubble. The Leafs make the hockey world go round.

      • It’s certainly a bubble frequently burst.

  6. *Suck it haters. Leafs players getting their due and love watching haters hate. *

    * = tic

    • Lol ya the so called cup contender not even in the playoffs at the all star break just prove the “ haters “ were right