NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 24, 2020

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

Seattle’s expansion franchise chooses Kraken as its team name, a look at what life will be like inside the host cities for the playoff tournament, and updates on Jonathan Toews, Sidney Crosby, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

THE SEATTLE TIMES: Seattle’s NHL expansion franchise yesterday announced its team name will be “Kraken”. The club also unveiled its logo, a stylized S to reflect the mythical monster squid, as well as their home and away jerseys.

Seattle Kraken home jersey (NHL.com).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’m not a fan of the Kraken name, and I’m not just talking about the rum (I’m a scotch man, but I digress). I felt they should’ve picked one that better reflected the Seattle/Pacific Northwest area rather than a creature from Scandinavian lore. It’s already ensured their fans will be nicknamed “Krakheads” and their arena “The Krakhouse.”

Nevertheless, I think they did very well with the jersey rollout. The logo is well done, I like the color scheme, and the anchor on each shoulder incorporating Seattle’s Space Needle is a nice touch. That jersey could become a popular NHL merchandise item.


NHL.COM: The league yesterday released details of what life will be like for the teams in the two host cities under Phase 4 of the return-to-play plan. That included videos of accommodation and amenities within each of the Secure Zones in Edmonton and Toronto, special theme nights for selected games, and in-game sounds and supplemented crowd noise for televised games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There will be plenty of facilities and recreational activities available for everyone involved in the tournament. Those will be crucial for morale as they adjust to life under a quarantine bubble. 


CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews rejoined his teammates yesterday after missing practice on Tuesday. He also denied a report by Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman claiming he voted against the return-to-play plan and CBA extension.

“I don’t know where he got that from,” said Toews. He added, “I voted yes. If anything, I kind of wanted the guys in our room to educate themselves on what was going on to the best of their ability and ultimately make their own decision.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’ll be interesting to hear Friedman’s response. He’s among the NHL media’s well-connected pundits. In his recent 31 Thoughts podcast, he said he’d heard from several people claiming Toews had voted against the plan.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby didn’t participate in yesterday’s scrimmage but skated on his own yesterday. He hasn’t participated in practice since leaving the ice on Saturday. While league protocols prevent the Penguins from revealing details, a source explained Crosby’s absence was a precautionary measure as he deals with a minor ailment. 

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Dougie Hamilton has been listed as unfit to play after missing practice yesterday. Hamilton had recovered from a broken leg suffered last January but left the ice on Wednesday in some discomfort. Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said he hoped this wasn’t a long-term issue.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hamilton was mentioned as a possible Norris Trophy finalist before his injury. While the Hurricanes adjusted to playing without him, they’re a much better team with the puck-moving blueliner in the lineup. It would be a blow to their Stanley Cup hopes if he’s sidelined for another indefinite period. 

THE DENVER POST: Cale Makar could be close to returning to practice. The Colorado Avalanche defenseman hasn’t skated with his teammates since Saturday but took part yesterday in individual on-ice drills. Meanwhile, Avs captain Nathan MacKinnon skipped scrimmage yesterday. No explanation was given for his absence.

NBC SPORTS PHILADELPHIA: Carter Hart didn’t participate in the Philadelphia Flyers’ final training camp scrimmage yesterday. The young goaltender was absent from practice since Sunday but did take part in some individual on-ice training. As per league protocols, no explanation was given for his absence.

THE ATHLETIC: Minnesota Wild defenseman Matt Dumba missed yesterday’s scrimmage for undisclosed reasons. Coach Dean Evason has no expectations where Dumba will participate in today’s practice.

THE SCORE: Columbus Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella isn’t pleased with the effort of two or three of his key players during Phase 3 training camp. He didn’t mention names, but he did stop practice yesterday to yell at his players after 30 seconds of the opening drill.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tortorella’s probably not the only coach involved in the playoff tournament to have a concern about the performance of some players in training camp following a long layoff. They just don’t express it as openly as the Blue Jackets’ colorful bench boss.

MONTREAL GAZETTE/WINNIPEG SUN: Canadiens defenseman Xavier Ouellet and Jets blueliner Anthony Bitetto revealed they had tested positive for COVID-19. Both have since recovered and rejoined their teammates.


  1. With you on your thoughts Lyle re Kraken name (although expected as that for months)

    Like the colours

    Agree on the Anchors on shoulders 👍

    However I disagree on the main symbol…. not a fan at all…. boring to me

  2. Re Crosby and minor ailment

    🤞 that this is not a flare up of the core muscle repair/injury

    • Lyle,

      Could be even worse, the comments I’ve heard on “Kraken” are a lot more misogynistic than yours.

      I agree, dicey choice and not per se grounded in Seattle.


  3. One thing I’ve wondered about the “bubble” arrangement is the effects of “fraternization” as the players from all teams will be more or less cheek by jowl. I know that, in today’s game, that might not be as big a deal as it was years ago (John Ferguson, for example, would get up and leave a restaurant while having breakfast if an opposing player came in).

    But I was thinking about what happens if emotions run high in a series, including a few fights – hits perceived as “dirty” (remember the Matthew Tkachuk hit on Kassian – bad vibes lingered). Are there plans to keep the teams “separate” while in the bubble?

    • George, lol!

      I’m sure you mean: “while having breakfast would get up and leave a restaurant“.

      If I hadn’t told you in the past what a fan I am of your grammar and punctuation, I would never do this.

      True story though, an old-school guy with hands the size of shovels.

      Be well!


      • LOL – no offense rattus rattus – actually should have said “would get up and leave a restaurant in the middle of his breakfast ….”

        Yeah, he’d even cross the street if he saw someone from an opposing team heading towards him … especially when the playoffs rolled around at which time he’d get wound up tighter than a ten-cent spring.

        And God help any teammate he saw even chatting with an opposing player


    • George times have changed since your example of one cantankerous individual. What are you talking about in your example, the 50s, 60s?

      The control teams have on players and reading on how the league and teams want or so desperately need this to work so all the horrors you’ve been predicting won’t happen have really clamped down to insure (as much as they possibly can or expect to) that the virus does not derail this.

      Plus let’s say you’re right and other players do bump into each other…what do you think will happen? A fight, some choice words or nothing? Whatever the case, it will be for our consumption and many will eat any of it up. The Toronto media will go all film festival on it.

      • You’re probably right there 🙂

    • The nhl doesn’t compete at that intensity anymore. Intimidation and courage aren’t as important as in the past. It’s just hockey now.

      • You’re right, 2.0, they don’t make ’em like they used to; and the older we get, the better we were; any other ways we could long for the past?
        Could I just add that, in Fergy’s days, there NHL jobs on six teams, not thirty one. That can have a serious effect on attitude.

  4. Ferguson was also a scorer in the AHL before winning promotion to the bigs.

    He knew where he came from, he did what he had to do, and he was an all around player in the NHL – beyond one of its most feared enforcers.

    A real enforcer went beyond just a big body, it was attitude

    • I doubt he’d make the league today. Also these players all train together in the summer, the guys from Toronto train in Toronto together, many go to Garry Roberts training place, they even train at team facilities of the city they are in for the summer. Many players play on a half dozen teams in their careers and teammates come and go, they all know a guy they hate could be a linemate next week. Not that this is new of course and I guess it’s natural to glorify the past. Older fans say how much better the game was int he 60’s but watch one of those games now, slow as hell with players not conditioned like they are now. Just a different game, I think there was more emotion in the game when I was a kid (80’s and 90’s) but the skill is better overall now in my opinion of course.

      • fci, who would make it in the NHL these days? Change the rules, change the players. I love today’s game but I really respect the stars that fought through the hooking and holding that was allowed in the “good” old days. Don’t forget the difference the elimination of the red line made in offensive, and defensive, hockey.
        Apples and oranges.

      • fci, why wouldn’t HE follow the same training regimen if he were trying to make the league today?