NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 18, 2020

by | Aug 18, 2020 | News, NHL | 15 comments

The Bruins, Avalanche, and Lightning take commanding leads, the Blues tie their series with the Canucks, an update on Evgeni Malkin, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: A four-goal third-period outburst by the Boston Bruins gave them a 4-3 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 4 of their first-round series and a commanding 3-1 series lead. Jake DeBrusk scored two of those goals as the Bruins held off the Hurricanes’ push in the dying minutes of regulation to tie the game.

Boston Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A big hit by Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy on Hurricanes captain Jordan Staal shifted the momentum of the game. Staal departed and didn’t return. An update on his status could be announced today.



Ryan O’Reilly scored twice and set up another as the St. Louis Blues downed the Vancouver Canucks 3-1 in Game 4 to tie their series at two games apiece. Blues goalie Jake Allen made 22 saves for the win.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was the Blues’ best effort of the postseason as they showed why they’re defending champions. O’Reilly remains in Conn Smythe Trophy form with his hardworking two-way play.

The Colorado Avalanche took a commanding 3-1 series lead over the Arizona Coyotes in Game 4 with a convincing 7-1 victory. Nazem Kadri scored twice and set up another, Nathan MacKinnon and Gabriel Landeskog had two assists and Cale Makar a goal and an assist. The Avs limited the Coyotes to just 15 shots.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was only a matter of time before the Avalanche broke through in this series. The Coyotes have relied on goalie Darcy Kuemper and a tight-checking defensive system, but the Avs’ talented depth couldn’t be contained in this game. MacKinnon also got into a rare tussle, rag-dolling Coyotes forward Christian Fischer after the latter cross-checked him during a scrum.  


Andrei Vasilevskiy made 28 saves as the Tampa Bay Lightning held off the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-1 in Game 4 to take a 3-1 lead in their opening-round series. Barclay Goodrow and Yanni Gourde scored for the Bolts while Cam Atkinson replied for the Jackets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Bolts are playing a more grinding style against the Jackets compared to last year’s opening-round series. If the Jackets can’t find a solution, their postseason will end on Wednesday.

SPORTSNET: For the third straight week, the NHL reports no positive COVID-19 tests.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins forwards Evgeni Malkin and Zach Aston-Reese recently underwent surgery. Malkin went under the knife for an elbow injury and is expected to require three-four weeks to recover. Aston-Reese had shoulder surgery and is expected to be sidelined for six months.

ESPN.COM: The NHL is finalizing plans that would allow family members to join players in the conference finals bubble in Edmonton. Family members would have to quarantine in their hotel room away from the player upon arrival for four days until they’ve passed four COVID-19 tests, after which they’ll be allowed in the same hotel room as the player. They would also be subject to daily testing.


  1. Been watching Bruin hockey for 40 years or more besides the comeback win in game 7 against Leafs last night might have been best period of hockey I’ve ever seen. The four goals were awesome but the hit was unbelievable absolutely went right through him. After watching Clifton Grizz and Charlie handle the puck I do not see them resigning Krug

    • I agree I just wanted Charlie to step up his game to ease the offensive loss of Krug & with Rask leaving the Bubble I have a feeling he’s going to retire or get traded and with those two alone puts over 12 million on the table they could use to get a winger and another goalie and maybe a Dman upgrade …

    • I started watching Bruins hockey in 1970 on channel 22 out of Springfield MA … there has been some lean years for them but for the most part it’s been a nice ride and till this day still don’t miss many games ….my favorite team was the 2011 Bruins team

    • If that had been Nik Kronwall he would’ve been suspended for that hit!!

      • No. No he wouldn’t have.

  2. OBE

    As a Leaf fan I have to agree. Boston has something special that they can pull out of the room and put on the ice. Last night reminded me of that Leaf game too.

    I wonder how much of it has to do with the leadership of Chara. On and off the ice, he seems like an exceptional person.

    I believe in hockey team leadership ( same goes for rugby). This is the spirit the Leafs lack and until they do something about it….they won’t win.

    Not sure in Dubas understands this at all. Shanahan should as he had it when he played. He won wherever he went.

    • Agree OBD, Obe Joe, that game was exactly what I thought of. They do have a culture that brings out the best and it needs to come from the players as MGT can force it. A GM can go looking for those type of players and bringing them in. If they are great on the ice too, they are not getting traded often, so good luck with that.
      The 2 guys I see as possible by the way they play is Reilly and Matthews. Not sure who they are off the ice.
      Chara and Bergeron are exceptional players and exceptional people. They ain’t doing this by rah rah speeches but by who they are as people and their actions every day. McAvoy might be that guy some day too.
      I read an article about Chara and this topic a while back. When Chara came into the league with the Islanders it was the same old rookies are treated as 2nd class citizens and only spoke when asked to speak etc etc.
      He didn’t like it, so when he took on more of a leadership role he changed it. Young players, new players, everybody is involved. And everybody is accountable to each other because of being involved in the process. Seems to be working.
      They know who each other is, and they have each others backs, warts and all. The real rotten apples get tossed.
      Which is why I am skeptical of the theories that the players are pissed at Rask and won’t welcome him back. If there are some, I would be surprised if it was more than a handful, this is assuming his reasons for leaving are genuine.
      Would like to see these guys hoist the cup again.

  3. Halak wiffed on the first two goals, then changes his blocker and glove; I guess the glove had bad eye sight.

    Jake Debrusk had a solid game and has shown some of his old game, that could be crucial for the Bruins as we all know you need balance scoring or a line to pickup for another line when it’s not going. That 3rd period was a total domination.

    Staal absolutely owner Bergy last night in the faceoff dot and you don’t see that very often.

    On the hit watching Staal reaction, directly to the dressing room and slammed his stick, makes me believe this isn’t good for Carolina, seem like he knew something was wrong.

    Kadri addition to Colorado is paying dividends, he is exactly the type of player every teams wants (except one) as long as he can keep his composure.

    • Nice summary Caper. Halak’s glove angle was weird on the first one, and similar on the 2nd.
      Shots were in the same spot, just over the pad and below his glove.
      Hope he shakes it off.

  4. Clip doesn’t show it, but there was a nice little skate over to the box by Makar to give Mackinnon some thanks for jumping in. Looks like a lot of mutual respect on the Avs bench and they’re gonna be a Wagon for sure.

    • Mackinnon absolutely man handled Fischer.
      Not like Fischer is a little guy either, that was a wow moment.
      Could have lit him up, but didn’t, even after a cross check to the face.
      That is some emotional control by Nathan.

  5. I’m not certain why a Bruins fan would want to remember that (but obviously can’t forget it) not why you think a Bruins fan would bring that up when referring to an epic 3rd period comeback.

    Oh wait, you’re trolling the Bruins fans! I get it!!!

  6. Well, that’s because the B’s had recently won the Stanley Cup. The Leafs haven’t won it in how long? Besides, the Leafs have a history of collapsing against the Bruins, aside from 2013. How about more recent game seven losses. :))

    • Have the Leafs had any recent collapses?

      One or two? Three? Four maybe?

  7. I truly believe Chara and Bergeron on first class people and leaders Bergeron played with a collapsed lung for Pete’s sake. Marchand said Julian said just try and be the 2nd best player on the ice because Bergeron will alway be the best. Marchand would run his head through the boards for Bergie not may players would do that.