NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 25, 2020
Jarome Iginla and Marian Hossa head the 2020 Hockey Hall of Fame Inductees, plus the latest return-to-play news and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
TSN: Jarome Iginla and Marian Hossa are the former NHL stars topping the Hockey Hall of Fame’s class of 2020 inductees. Former NHL defensemen Doug Wilson and Kevin Lowe, Edmonton Oilers general manager Ken Holland, and former Canadian women’s goaltender Kim St. Pierre were the other inductees.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to the HHoF Class of 2020.
It wasn’t surprising that Iginla and St. Pierre were inducted. With 625 goals, Iginla was one of the top goal scorers in NHL history, winning the Richard Trophy twice and the Art Ross in 2002. St. Pierre was perhaps the greatest goalie in women’s hockey history.
Hossa was also a first-ballot inductee. He tallied 525 goals and 1,134 points, won three Stanley Cups with the Chicago Blackhawks, and developed into a strong two-way forward.
Holland got in as a builder for his work with the Detroit Red Wings, building on a solid foundation to turn that club into a league powerhouse and Stanley Cup champion.
Wilson’s induction was long overdue. He was one of the best defensemen of the 1980s, winning the Norris Trophy in 1982. He was also a first-team all-star in 1982 and a two-time second-team all-star while netting 827 points in 1,024 games.
Lowe had a fine NHL career, winning six Stanley Cups with the Edmonton Oilers and New York Rangers. Nevertheless, I don’t think he should have received the nod over more deserving former stars like Alexander Mogilny, Rod Brind’Amour, and Daniel Alfredsson.
LATEST RETURN-TO-PLAY NEWS
SPORTSNET: Chris Johnston feels the NHL faces a formidable challenge maintaining momentum toward resuming the season as more players return to their respective teams this week. More players mean more COVID-19 testing, which could result in more positive test results. Phase 3 of the return-to-play plan sees training camps open on July 10.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The players are returning to their NHL cities by Friday to allow sufficient time to test and self-isolate those who test positive for 14 days. That would allow suitable recovery time before training camp.
The next month will determine if the 24-team playoff tournament begins in August as planned. A significant spike in positive tests could jeopardize the tournament.
THE SCORE: Older NHL coaches are putting their trust in the league’s restart plan despite being in a higher risk category for COVID-19. The Athletic’s Pierre LeBrun reports 12 active members on NHL coaching staffs will be 60-or-older by the end of June. The league won’t impose age restrictions on the coaching staff, leaving it up to the individuals to determine if they wish to participate or not.
VANCOUVER SUN: Ben Kuzma reports a snag in local health protocols for positive COVID-19 tests could threaten Vancouver’s chances to become one of the two host cities for Phase 4.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Athletic’s Thomas Drance reports the disagreement is in the details. Pierre LeBrun said the Canucks continue to work on this issue with the league, but he and Drance agree it could prove insurmountable.
TAMPA BAY TIMES: The Lightning reopened its training facility Wednesday after five players and staff tested positive las Friday. Those individuals are now in quarantine.
Former Sportsnet pundit John Shannon reports the NHL Players Association wants the July 1 bonus payments to the players to proceed as scheduled. Shannon said he’s heard the league prefer deferring those payments to the end of the tournament. More than $300 million are owed in bonus payments.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Shannon indicates the bonus payments are among the issues currently being discussed by both sides. They tentatively agreed to extend expiring contracts to Oct. 31.
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: As coronavirus cases rise in Nevada, the Vegas Golden Knights are selling t-shirts encouraging fans to wear masks in public.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The slogan on the shirts is “Don’t Take A Chance”. Maybe it should read, “Don’t Take A Chance On Spoiling Our Hopes of Hosting The Playoff Tournament.”
IN OTHER NEWS…
THE SCORE: Construction of the Calgary Flames’ new arena will begin in August 20201.
NEWSDAY: Despite the owner of Nassau Coliseum shutting down the arena as he seeks a buyer, a county executive suggests the New York Islanders could still use the building next season until their new arena in Belmont Park is ready.
I for one can’t wait for the final good bye to the crappy Nassau Coliseum. The Isles deserve better.
Damn Vegas is gonna blow it. It’s only one f a handful of cities in North America that can handle big scale events like a tournament. Besides them, the only two other cities that have in infrastructure and room to do it right would be Toronto and LA. All three of these cities can easily contain and maintain a bubble for at least 1000 people in one area with flow.
It would be nice to have it in Edmonton…. I don’t know how if there are seriously considered but the ice there would probably be the best there, even if it’s by a small amount.
Lyle no love for Theo Fleury? Theo who played at 5’6″ at a time there wasn’t many and not only survived was one of the best. He had one 50 goal season 2 100pt season and was a point per game 1088pts in 1084 games while racking up 1841 penalty minutes.
Theo numbers are better then that of Hossa, it was time to give Theo some consideration and based on yesterday inductee other then Iginla, Fluery or Mogilny should’ve been in.
Fleury deserves the nod. We can also add a Stanley cup and Olympic Gold to his resume.
I’m not saying Fleury isn’t deserving at all. I merely tossed out three names as examples of others I felt were more deserving than Lowe.
Lowe should have had points deducted for his abject failure as a GM and sending the Oilers back to mediocrity.
Congratulations to the HHoF inductees.
The usual “old boys” HOF Committee.
Iginla – 100%
Hossa – no complaint
Wilson and Lowe ahead of Mogilny and Fleury?
What a disgraceful exhibition of cronyism.
Unfortunately not that atypical for the slithery HOF Selection Committee.
imo members’ vote selections should be public knowledge.
Hossa should of been a 2nd ballot choice…… Theo before…
Lowe was 1st pair during Oiler Cups but…was he better than Brad Marsh?
Hard to argue against the players mentioned being more deserving of entry into the HHOF. I think they are too as they were more dominant.
The Marsh comparison is pretty funny, but I will throw Lowe some love.
1st rd pick in a year that 2 age groups were draft eligible as they lowered the age to 18 that year.
The top defense man in the Q gets the Kevin Lowe Trophy.
6 time cup champ and alternate captain for most of them. In 1988 playoffs (they won) played with a broken wrist and later revealed by Gretzky that he had broken ribs too.
7 time all-star.
Played for Canada in Canada Cup and WC.
NHL coach and GM as well as roles with Canadian National team.
A really valuable player and an impressive career overall.
I admit never noticing Lowe on the ice which the good thing when your job is to watch the backs of the high flying offense going around you. And I always thought Marsh was underappreciated
Lowes resume is great I get it but somehow never occured to me that he was going to be in the HOF
That said I am one who thinks JR should be in. Pop him in any NHL time period and he still succeeds
Ya, I never thought of him as a HOF’er either ds. I just have an appreciation for the D side of the game for D-men. So part of me is happy to see a guy who did a lot of the undervalued work you need done to win get rewarded.
Always liked Marsh too.