NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 10, 2020

by | Apr 10, 2020 | News, NHL | 39 comments

Update on the NHL’s plans to resume the season if possible, plus the latest on Colby Cave, Dougie Hamilton and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

TSN: While NHL commissioner Gary Bettman recently acknowledged the possibility of the league having to scrap the rest of the regular-season schedule, Pierre LeBrun reports the priority remains to hold regular-season contests before the playoffs. “Whether that’s 82 (games) – probably not – 78, 76, 74, all possibilities mentioned on that call,” said LeBrun.

Darren Dreger reported a flash poll of NHL general managers found 20 GMs supported a best-of-five series from the opening round through the Conference Finals, but they’d still want a best-of-seven Stanley Cup Final.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Most NHL fans and pundits (including myself) believe this season is likely over in its entirety. I daresay those at NHL headquarters and the brain trust at the NHL Players Association understands this could happen.

But as I’ve frequently pointed out, as long as there’s a chance to salvage part of this season to recoup some of their lost revenue and crown a Stanley Cup champion, the league and the PA – with the full blessing of the team owners and the players – will consider every option.

ESPN.COM: Greg Wyshynski reports Carolina Hurricanes GM Don Waddell said his club is looking into staging home games that would include a limited number of fans should the regular-season resume later this year. Waddell indicated it’s part of several options the club is exploring, including returning with no fans in the building.

Carolina Hurricanes general manager Don Waddell (Photo via NHL.com).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Hurricanes probably aren’t the only NHL club considering such choices.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Ken Campbell wonders what the NHL will do about this season’s conditional trades if the season prematurely ends and those conditions can’t be met.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Plenty of speculation and suggestions from some in the media, but the league insists it’s too early to address that issue. Nevertheless, I expect that will become a larger issue if it becomes apparent the rest of the season could be canceled.

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: Santa Clara County executive officer Dr. Jeffrey Smith recently told the county’s Board of Supervisors he didn’t expect sports to resume until at least the American Thanksgiving weekend in November. That would mean no games for the San Jose Sharks and the NFL’s San Francisco ’49ers, among others.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If that turns out to be the case, kiss the 2019-20 NHL season goodbye.

SPORTSNET: Edmonton Oilers forward Colby Cave remains in a medically induced coma following surgery on Tuesday to remove a colloid cyst that was causing pressure on his brain.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Here’s hoping Cave pulls through and makes a complete recovery.

Hurricanes defenseman Dougie Hamilton would be ready to play if the NHL seasons resumes later this year. Hamilton suffered a broken left leg in January.

OTTAWA SUN: Senators defenseman Mark Borowiecki said he expects to be able to play his club’s remaining regular-season games if the schedule should resume. He was sidelined by an ankle injury when the league went on hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Rather than return to the Oilers, forward Anton Slepyshev re-signed a two-year deal with the KHL’s CSKA Moscow.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Journal’s Jim Matheson speculated the Oilers were offering up a one-year deal. Looks like Shepyshev wants the security of a multi-year deal. He also probably received more money to stay in Moscow than he would’ve got from the Oilers.

NBC SPORTS: After adopting the ’80s hit “Gloria” as a theme song last season, the St. Louis Blues players have opted this year for the Eddie Murphy tune “Party All The Time.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: You can bet that’s what they’ll do if they repeat as Stanley Cup champions.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Former Blackhawks captain Pat Stapleton suffered a stroke on Wednesday and passed away at the age of 79. “Whitey”, as he was nicknamed, spent eight seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks from 1965-66 to 1972-73, and was a member of Team Canada in the 1972 Summit Series against the Soviet Union. He also spent five seasons in the WHA. In 10 NHL seasons, Stapleton tallied 43 goals and 337 points in 635 games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: My condolences to Stapleton’s family, friends, and former teammates.


  1. At least one poll (done through Seton Hall) shows that the vast majority of fans (of all sports) will not return to arenas/stadiums until there is a vaccine


    And THAT, barring some miraculous breakthrough, isn’t likely until at least February 2021. Then it has to be manufactured in huge quantities, dispersed throughout the world, and applied. Meanwhile, this coming fall, they will be trying to figure out how to maintain “social distancing” while giving the regular flu shots!

    And, at least where hockey is concerned, can you just imagine the fear and angst when the usual spate of games are missed due to flu outbreaks that seem to plague every early season? Is it just flu or is this Covid-19 again?

    • It’s certainly a different time.

      Covid-19 doesn’t disappear until there is a vaccine or a pill.

      Flattening the curve is only good while self isolating, once the restraints are off the curve will start north again.

  2. With all that said, the big question for me is, how long do you think the US is going to hold down their economy?

    • They had no choice but to see it deflated all during the 1930s and the Great Depression … and only really came out of it after December 7, 1941

  3. I disagree when sporting events are open to the public I believe fans will go and watch maybe more now as people have been sitting around for too long. People with existing health issues and maybe the elderly will be more cared for sure but the average Joe I believe will go and watch I know I will. Media is making this out as if you catch Covid you will die when the truth is most of the Hospitals are empty and nurses and Doctors are being laid off in a lot of states. People are being mislead. You will see people at sporting events wearing masks but they will be there. 88’000 people die each year from alcoholism 75,000 a year from drugs 36,000 a year from influenza you can’t close the country for to much longer or there will not be a country to come back to. More people will be ruined by depression and stress than by Covid 19 it’s sad but true you can’t have a 20 percent unemployment rate and be a healthy country. Take care and God Bless

    • I respectfully disagree Obe. The issue is the actions of people who aren’t “afraid” impact everybody else. That’s the whole point. The “media” whatever that means, isn’t saying that at all. We all know the stats because of the media, so I have no idea what media you are talking about.
      Every serious health professional that specializes in infectious disease control estimates the death toll will be way higher that the 2 stats you provide combined if we simply go back to the way we behaved before. The only reason they haven’t exploded more is because of the behaviors we are now finally taking.
      I will paraphrase Bill Gates quote (who did a TED talk and predicted this exact scenario 5 years ago and discussed how we should prepare for it to avoid the situation we find ourselves in now).
      We can’t have a functioning economy and expect people to ignore the bodies piled up in the corner.

      Get the rate down, test, test, test, test. so we have the data to make the right decisions and we can start to move back to getting things going again. Or we are right back to it exploding again. The solution is actually really simple. Is their an economic trade off? Absolutely. That is a real discussion to have.

      I will go with the way we are doing it now. Will this get stupidly expensive and require extra taxes for those of us who do well to pay off the debt we incur to assist those that get hurt by it? Yep, and lots of them. I will happily pay them.

      • Ray I dont disagree but what we are doing now have greater consequences think what you are stating. One is wrong about the media it’s all fear all the time. They dont state the recoveries, they dont mention the suicides related to covid-19
        Nova Scotia 1 covid-19 death and 2 suicide death related to covid-19
        Manitoba 2 death 15 so far to the flue.
        You could correctly state that this is proof social distancing is working but dont understate the underlying issues that the social distancing is having.
        I doubt very much President Trump will keep the US economy closed for another 2 months.
        The notion of flattening the curve and then allowing things to go back to normal, never made sense from day 1
        As long as there is no vaccine or cure or medication covid-19 exist then people will get the virus. Will people do the self distancing for the next 12 to 18 months and at what cost. The warmer weather is right around the corner do your really think people are going to stay in?
        Not arguing the facts but dont think that what is presently happening does have huge impact and that body bags wont be lined up.

      • That is a fair argument Caper, it is a trade off, and neither option is good. It is simply picking the least bad.
        Bottom line is that it is highly contagious, and more deadly than the flu. It will crush our economy either way.
        Are hundreds of thousands of deaths acceptable in Canada? A million in the US? I don’t think so, you are free to disagree.
        We need testing that gets results in hours, and we will get one, and that is where the $$ needs to go. Companies will pay for it to have the ability to reopen with staff that are either already immune or don’t have it yet. It will raise costs and cause inflation.
        In the mean time get the numbers down to reduce the deaths that come with an overwhelmed health system, so we can use those resources to test, and test and test. If you don’t have immunity you will need to be tested regularly or you can’t work or go out into the public places.
        We can’t even make good decisions until we have real data. It is novel.
        Herd immunity doesn’t happen until at least 40 – 50% of the population gets infected. The math is pretty simple on how many lives that will cost.
        Are they selling fear? I dunno, but those are the facts the way I understand them and that is scary, not so much for me, but I like my parents and I assume most people do. Selling fear or stating reality? The media I watch is screaming we are all going to die, they are simply stating what the experts are telling us. I believe them.

    • Many have a different way of viewing this Obe, and because it’s unprecedented (in our lifetime), those views will differ widely. Fair ball.

      But when you say “People are being mislead” it raises the question “mislead to what end?” and suggests a conspiracy of some sort to deliberately ruin the economy. By who? Yes, the annual flu takes many lives – no denying that – but nowhere near the same % of Covid-19.

      Watch this to get a comparison perspective


      Then look at Italy, France and Spain and their death rates from those infected, where they approached the initial threat with almost total indifference to the consequences.

    • I suppose you believe that vaccines are causing autism, the moon landing never happened and the earth is flat if you believe this is just the media making it all up.

  4. My uncle passed away yesterday in a home he was old and not well for months they counted him as a Covid 19 death it’s not true. Was just reading my Twitter and people are saying exact same thing as I just typed nurses and Doctors are being laid off. Media is a joke they are promoting fear just read military taking down hospital in Washington not one bed was used. Do your home work read and listen with open mind and stop living in fear it’s not healthy. I’ve been in isolation for now over twenty days and will remain till end of month but when snow is gone and grass is green I will be enjoying the great out doors. Stop watching CNN and watch cartoons will make you happier and less afraid.

    • We must live on different planets Obe. Windsor Ontario is sending 1000 nurses everyday into Detroit to assist. Perhaps those nurses could go there and assist, or NY where they are working 12 hour shifts, 7 days a week with help from other regions. You’re right it hasn’t impacted every region of every country, but it will if we don’t do what we’re doing.
      Hospitals were closing in some rural counties of the US prior to this outbreak., they may want to prepare to reopen them.
      This isn’t living fear, that isn’t a real argument, just a way to avoid the facts.
      CNN actually employs fact checkers and has sound journalistic standards. Unlike many others especially the podcasts etc. Do they mistakes, of course they all do and at least they admit it a deal with folks that make them. Do they sensationalize, yes, too often. They also promote conflict by having panels that argue with each other.
      May I suggest buying a subscriptions to newspapers online. How about NY Times and Wall Street Journal (owned by Murdoch who owns Fox). Get 2 sides. Check out their editorials today and check back in here.

      • To anyone downplaying this virus…Ny had 800+ deaths yesterday. Look at the videos of mass grave sites for unclaimed bodies, forklifts loading bodies into tractor trailers…. NY typically removes 25 bodies from homes on any given day. Today… they’re averaging 125-150!

        This is WAY to large for conspiracy theory crap. Like it’s even remotely possible to get Republicans, Democrats on the same page… and no whistle blowers? Hmmmm? Not only that… but they’ve somehow convinced every other country to go along? Doctors, scientists, universities? Yeah …. that seems plausible.

        I think the main problem, it’s not as bad in most cities as NY. Most people haven’t been affected or have had family or friends affected by this virus. So it all seems a bit peripheral to most people.

        I thought this was overblown a month or two ago…. until I saw it actually touch lives of people I know and their families.

        While we’re on that subject…. anyone see DS , Ihatecrosby and the other NY contributors since this went upside down?

      • Wondered about those guys too Nyr4life. Lyle did check with Pengy and he did respond – just busy handling his business – as are many I suspect.

        As for some suggestions above that, “once the nice weather arrives people will ignore the social-gathering restrictions and flock ti the great outdoors. Maybe – in some areas at least – but here in Canada the provincial authorities are taking various hard-line approaches to anyone who adopts that careless attitude


      • Ray you lost me stating CNN states facts, that long be proven wrong and no they dont own their mistakes. I use to watch CNN nightly but stop when they became the news instead of reporting the news and no I dont watch Fox either for the same reasons.

      • Caper, I don’t watch CNN as much anymore either but still do on occasion.
        Mostly Fareed Zakaria on Sunday AM.
        I think your wrong about them and the facts though, and owning mistakes.
        I attached a link for you because I remember it happening.
        They owned it, apologized, 3 key people resigned. Too much hype, too much conflict, sure. Fake news? not so much. That narrative is fake news. Which is exactly how some folks want it.


    • Yep, I think the NHL/NBA are not getting it.
      I lived in the upper Midwest, I hated sitting inside during the cold weather and short lite days. Once warm weather hit I was out side and could care less about who was playing in the finals. Find it hard to believe that Canadians and people in COLD America who have been inside and getting cabin fever are going to be inside on a 80 degree summer day watching Hockey or BB. It will be beer / BBQ / Back Yard and maybe baseball on the radio.

  5. People that are willing to accept the risk of getting covid forget that if they get inflected they will – not may, will – infect others, who will die.

    It is well documented that some with covid are asymptomatic. Others are infectious before they see symptoms and self-isloate.

    So let us be clear: while the virus has no cure some of those attending large gatherings like sports will absolutely infect, and kill others.

    How incredibly disappointing some would ignore this irrefutable reality. How lucky public health officials have banned large gatherings. Thank goodness for team owners would have games played in empty arenas.

  6. Ray I won’t comment on this again believe what you want your talking about one place New York who have done the worst job in world with Covid 19 of course they need nurses and Doctors but USA is a big country California has 40 million people how many deaths there less than last year with Influenza. CNN is all about November,s election they got caught lying again yesterday they want the Country locked down its good for politics. You stay inside forever if you like I’m going outside if I get a runny nose I will use a Kleenex and blow it. Millions of people died in World war 1 and 2 and fought for our freedom I’m going to enjoy it all this Media coverage over a bad cold is ridiculous you watch it I’m not. I’m not changing your mind and you sure are not changing mine.

    • Obe.
      To say NY did a terrible job with this is completely false.
      How do you deal with something you don’t know is there or can’t see?

      They’re now saying that Covid19 more than likely hit NY in January or February. Which is back when people thought corona was “flu like”

      Have you bet been to NY city? I don’t mean Carnegie deli or the Statue of Liberty….. I mean actually experience the subways, transportation, etc? 6 inches of social distancing is near impossible…. never mind 6 ft-26ft. You have a lot of people packed into a small area…. of course it will spread easier and faster than most cities.
      You have people pouring in and out of this small area from literally every country on the planet…. daily… millions….

      La population 4 million, on 500 sq miles. NYC 9 million on 300 sq miles… see where I’m going?

  7. Today in Canada they reported best case scenario is the death total will be between 4,000 and 44,000 that what us practicing social distancing .

    If you can not provide a better set of numbers then that wide discrepancy then dont report at all.

    What has change is the expected death rate is 2 to 3 percent of the people who get covid-19 will now. How many will get it we dont know
    Some folks have already had it and show no symptoms.
    I’m not calling it a conspiracy theory but the reporting is pathetic and fear draws ratings.

    Has CNN or Fox reported how many people have recovered from covid-19, have they talked about how many people have committed suicide, and how many more will? But that doesn’t fit the narrative.
    Good luck keeping the economy shut down for 12 to 18 month. No way the USA is going to let that happen.

    • I don’t think anybody is talking about shutting down the economy for 12-18 months Caper. Reduce the spread and stop the spike. Lift some restrictions, test, test, test. We need faster results and more testing, then it can be managed with less impact and spikes in death.
      If we don’t death rate goes up, if we do, down.
      I am guessing June for lifting of many restrictions. Staying outside is good., viruses hate UV. Big crowds in arenas and bars? Can’t see it. More folks back to work absolutely. Fewer people in a store at once, for sure.
      If it starts to spike again, hunker down again.
      12-18 months is for the vaccine and then vaccinate, then normal.
      The big gaps in the models is because it is dependant on how people behave and the virus is new. Scientists hate models, they are a guess.

  8. To Nyr4life point I would agree it depends on were you live.

    I live in Manitoba 1.3 million in the province as of today we have 230 cases and today it’s been reported that the 4th person has died from covid-19 he was 70yrs old.

    I will add Winnipeg folks have been doing a great job social distancing for the most part.

    Yes I’m on board with all of it.

    I’m only stating how realistic do you think it’s going to be for the USA not to open up the economy, they are already fearful of falling behind China.

    I dont know but we will see how it plays out.

    • Honestly I believe China just hung themselves. And so do a lot of economists. I don’t think they fully recover from this one. I think you’ll see a very painful pull out from China by most countries.

  9. Explain to me Caper why during Trumps briefings the Media can attend as long as they sit apart. They are working and getting paid are they essential business how can they justify going to work but telling governments to stay closed hypocrites. Will be interesting to see the numbers between Sweden and other countries their size and location everything open bars schools people working. Remember I am isolated I have been for three weeks and will be till end of month I just don’t agree with it and won’t be when weather turns. Still think Bruins should be given cup and say a prayer for the Colby Cave family I know them well great people🙏

    • Obe, subtlety is not working.

      Your choice to risk getting covid is not limited to just you.

      If you get it you become a carrier. You risk exposing family, friends and anyone you come in contact with: grocery clerks, bank tellers, health care workers, the bus driver who takes you to the hockey game you insist on going to. And his family. And on, and on.

      It’s not just about you. How is any of this elusive, or new? Frankly you are coming across as selfish, insensitive and either ignorant or indifferent.

      Clear now?

      • Selfish people simply never consider how their actions affect others … their own convenience is all that matters

      • A few weeks ago it was entitlement to other people’s money…. fast forward…. it’s lives today…..

  10. Stupid is as stupid does you can’t fix stupid.

    • We agree on that Obe

      • As they say, sometimes the best lessons learned in life are those experienced the hard way … meanwhile, this virus does not differentiate between the stupid and all others

      • True words George. Gonna be a bumby ride. I get the economics of it, I have kids and friends effected. Antibody test available soon for front line workers. And then the rest of us, some will be able to move freely. We’ll have a test for the virus soon that gives results in hours not days. Will take along time to get the entire population, but we will have some restrictions lifted. HIgh risk folks will have to wait the longest.
        Need to accept reality.

  11. Feel for the people in food bank line ups miles long like in San Antonio they can’t go to work with twenty people but stand in lines with thousands real smart. More will die of suicide and starvation than Covid 19. Like I said can’t fix stupid keep watching it will get worse looting, Murder alcoholism drug addiction child abuse spousal abuse. Very sad.

    • Who is selling fear now Obe?
      I don’t know where you live, but if the gov won’t step up and lets people starve. Time for a new one.
      It will be expensive, but it is happening so we need to deal with it. Those that are well off need to step up too and I fully expect my taxes to go up here in Alberta. I’m good with it, just the reality.
      I have to say our conservative government is doing pretty good. They have a plan and are communicating it.
      We will see how they execute.

  12. Not fear Ray it’s fact , fear is what media is portraying I’m saying go back to work open countries but do it smart and carefully before there is no country left. Your taxes won’t feed the unemployment people’s gold fish let alone the people do the math. I’m not saying I’m 100 percent right it’s my opinion that we need to open country before it’s to late. Sweden and Japan took different approach they are open but careful and have way way better results than rest of world. Time will tell but I believe they need to open Country and stop politicizing every move.

    • Taxes can pay for it Obe, painful and make do with less. Again I don’t know where you live, but assuming NA, we can pay for this, we have enormous wealth. Nobody will shut down the economy for 12-18 months, ain’t gonna happen. Opening it up now makes no sense either. Baby steps dude.
      It will be in June or July, but not full on.
      Our world has changed for a while, and agree just need to be smart about it. I just hate the blanket “media” crap. As hole they have been good through this. Not the enemy.

  13. Ray are your taxes going to pay for the mortgage payments the car payments their children’s schooling ? You must make a pile of cash because stimulus pkg of billions only pays bills for 4 months wake up. Don’t call me Dude you have no idea who I am state your opinion and show some class. Media as whole has been fair not sure what your watching but keep believing ,and you haven’t explained to me why Sweden and Japan have done so well with an open working country?

    • Not a Japan or Sweden expert but from what I can tell Japan isn’t testing much. We have tested more folks in Alberta than they have in the entire country. Stats likely 10 times higher. They also closed schools and mass gatherings sooner than most countries. Being an island likely helped too. China nd Japan also don’t like each other, so not many travellers from there unlike NA.
      Sweden has some controls but far less than most western countries. Not testing much so not sure they really know as far as total cases.
      They are actually far worse than Canada per capita and slightly less than USA. 2000 scientists and doctors just signed a petition to tighten it as the death rate suggests way more cases. Will see how it works. Interesting case study, but I prefer our approach in Canada.
      \We will see how it plays out Obe.