NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 26, 2020

by | Aug 26, 2020 | News, NHL | 25 comments

The Lightning and Canucks tie their respective series, updates on the Avalanche and Islanders, Blue Jackets coach John Tortorella fined, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

Tampa Bay Lightning winger Ondrej Palat (NHL Images).

  NHL.COM: Ondrej Palat scored his first goal of the playoffs in overtime as the Tampa Bay Lightning edged the Boston Bruins 4-3. With the win, the Lightning tied the series at a game apiece. Blake Coleman scored twice for the Bolts while the Bruins’ Brad Marchand also netted two goals, including the game-tying goal that forced the extra frame. The two clubs face off again tonight in Game 3.



SPECTOR’S NOTE A better effort from the Lightning in this contest compared to Game 1. They rallied from 1-0 and 2-1 deficits, taking their first lead of the series until Marchand tied it late in the third, and getting that big goal from Palat to tie the series.

The Vancouver Canucks tied their series with the Vegas Golden Knights with a 5-2 victory in Game 2. Canucks winger Tyler Toffoli marked his return from injury with a goal and two assists, Elias Pettersson also had three points, Bo Horvat scored two goals and Jacob Markstrom made 38 saves.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A solid bounce-back performance by the Canucks following their meek effort in a 5-0 loss to Vegas in Game 1. The return of Toffoli and his two-way skills provides a welcome boost to their lineup.

THE DENVER POST: Down 2-0 in their series with the Dallas Stars, the Colorado Avalanche need production from their secondary scorers if they’re to rally back. Apart from Nazem Kadri’s secondary assist in Game 1, none of their forwards beyond the top line of Nathan MacKinnon, Mikko Rantanen, and Gabriel Landeskog has a point in this series.

NEW YORK POST: Facing back-to-back games on Wednesday and Thursday, the Islanders could sit starter Semyon Varlamov for one of them. Varlamov’s played in every game thus far for the Isles in this postseason.

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: The NHL fined Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella $25K for his quick exit from his post-game video press conference following his club’s opening- round elimination by the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tortorella answered just two questions before abruptly leaving.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tortorella’s GAF factor (Give A F**k) was probably at zero by the end of that game.

NHL.com: NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly isn’t ruling out the possibility of the league returning to action next season in divisional bubble cities but it’s not something they’ve necessarily considered.

 “I don’t think our current format for bubbles would work for the regular season, particularly because our objective is to play a full season and I’m not sure how we do that in the format we’re currently utilizing. It’s already a significant amount of time just to complete our playoffs in that type of bubble format. I don’t think it’s going to look like what we’re currently doing, but could it be a variation of what we’re currently doing. I wouldn’t rule that out any more than I would rule out any number of other alternatives.”

Daly said they’d love to be in the position to open on Dec. 1 with full arenas but acknowledged that might not be possible under the current course of the COVID-19 pandemic. Options could include pushing back the start date of the season or opening to partial crowds in all or part of their 31 markets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The NHL’s intention is to stage a full 2020-21 campaign. Daly indicated they will be flexible and will keep a close eye on other leagues that open this fall to determine what works and what doesn’t. With 24 of the league’s 31 teams located in the United States, the course of the pandemic in that country will determine when the puck drops next season and how and where they stage those games.


  1. A back-to-back could hurt the more veteran-laden Bruins who also have to decide if they put Halak in again or go with playoff – even NHL – inexperienced Vladar, or Lagace who at least has played some in the NHL.

    Do Bruins fans think the 35 y/o Halak, who played almost 65 minutes last night and faced 40 shots, should play again?

  2. Pretty much have to play Halak but Boston better pick up the pace as Tampa out played them most of game. Bruins showed they had it in them when down 3-2. Vegas losing absolutely shocked me they looked so dominant in first game.

  3. Torts is a TOOL …

    • Right up there with Greg Popovitch, Bill Belichick and probably the worst of all, Bobby Knight.

      • George, the best coaching clinic I ever experienced by far was Bobby Knight in Buffalo when he used a local high school team to demonstrate how to build an offence. He knew the players’ names in a heartbeat and had them running drills perfectly from start to finish. One of the absolute best teachers I’ve seen.
        I know he could be a jerk but he was an incredible coach.

      • I think Tortorella is a pretty good coach as well, as are the others mentioned – just don’t put any of them in front of a media scrum and expect respect for their plight as reporters.

  4. Krug don’t play on the PK don’t play at end of games when B’s are up 1 goal but he has to play in OT and it cost them last night

  5. Halak had to catch that puck was easy play and that also cost them but puck should have been out twice before that.

    • Should have been cleared long before that play even happened.
      They had 4 or 5 chances and couldn’t get it out.

      Gotta roll with Halak unless he’s hurt.

  6. Well Bolts and ‘Nucks get their must need wins…. Bolts nor ‘Nucks IMHO would have been able to win 4 of 5

    Today will be interesting on no day off for rest after an OT game

    3 bad defensive errors and outstanding goaltending and shot blocking by ‘Nucks the difference last night

    it’s 2-1 in the second but the 2nd period was completely lobsided in shots; attempted shots; pressure etc etc by Knights… at that point I really believed that there was no doubt that Knights would eventually wear them down and win

    Mental D lapse and ‘Nucks goal with only 85 seconds left in 2nd and another D gaff 18 seconds into the third…. and that was it…. wind completely out of the sails of Knights

    Kudos on ‘Nucks fantastic turnaround (from game 1) and what a game back for TT!

    I still think Knights will win the series… massive wake up call… Schmidt can’t possibly repeat that performance again. That’s probably the worst I’ve seen him play. He’s usually very reliable and poised. He was rattled and discombobulated … expect a “new” Schmidt tomorrow

    Re Torts…. they should increase fines for multiple offenders

    Transparency… never been a fan of Torts the man…. his coaching accomplishments speak for themselves… Torts the man is and always has been a bitter and confrontational guy with a magnanimous attitude and a Jupiter-sized ego… let no one ever say Torts is a graceful loser

    His pick and choose style over what questions he will answer; and his constant affront to reporters with poignant questions after a loss is completely against what the NHL is striving for.

    I know the league won’t do it …. but…

    Next time …. $40 K fine and 5 game suspension; then $100k 10 game; then $200 K … out for season

    • Pengy, to the contrary, Torts should be getting increasing bonuses from the league for showing a personality. The rest of the coaches and most players are a bore. This is an entertainment industry.

      • Hi W17H

        With you re more coaches to show a personality us desired

        Unfortunately IMHO ; and apparently the League’s opinion; Tort’s antics are not what the League needs

        There are some great “character” coaches out there… I’m entertained often with Maurice’s pressers

        I have no time to listen to Torts; especially after a loss…. you get little/no responses to prudent/logical/warranted questions ; and snippy off topic 3 word responses on others

        So for me… fine him , fine him heavily

  7. Tortorella and Bob Hartley – good times…..

  8. Boston was brutal last night it’s a compliment they made it to OT.

    Carlo who i always rave about is not having a good series.

    Boston D as a whole sucked! Do they know they are allowed to throw a body check. The hit count the NHL stat provides is a joke. They call rub outs a hit.

    Brad Marchand was the only bruin and Sean Karaly.

    I would bench Chara nothing more then a redwood tree standing in the forest. Bringing absolutely Nothing to the team.

    Find with losing but holy molly show you care, have some passion F-in Well hit someone.

    Krug brutal ($7.5 please… see ya); Ritchie thanks for the goal but you suck, please get in shape.

    Oops i forgot McAvoy did he play?

    Don’t play Halak today play Vladar.

    • Caper is fired up this AM!
      TB has been the better team for 5 straight periods plus the OT IMO.
      Chara struggled last night and is having issues dealing with the speed and pressure of TB fore check and is fighting the puck. Only played 17 minutes, so Cassidy sees it too.
      The entire 4th line for Boston got dominated last night. Again. Cassidy has to rethink his comfort throwing them out against anybody. They are getting owned through the first 2 games. Absolutely dominated.
      He get’s last change for the next 2, I assume he does that and shortens the bench.
      Krecji’s line got outplayed. DeBrusk looks lost at times.
      Top line was great and Coyle’s line didn’t hurt us and had some good shifts down low.

      OT goal take:
      Yes Halak should have caught that, yes they should have got it out prior, but the missed assignment on Palat was Kuraly. Puck watching vs his assignment.
      Krug had his guy and was battling.
      I don’t know the B’s switch off protocols when a guy circles the net, but the way I was taught and coached was Carlo let’s him go. Stay where Palat ended up. You can actually score from there.

      B’s are in tough. I don’y know how you start a raw rookie in game 3 tonight. Zero NHL games and only 60 in the AHL.
      Cinderella stories are great, but that would be an incredibly risky move. If Halak stinks throw him in for game 4 but gotta roll with the vet don’t you?
      Not feeling great about our chances tonight, hoping the B’s surprise.

      • Ray you said Chara played 17minutes, that’s about 18 minutes to much.

      • That is the most I have seen Chara struggle in my life Caper. So I hear ya.
        Father time is undefeated, perhaps it has finally caught up to Chara.
        But I’m rootin’ for him tonight!
        Go Chara, Go B’s.

      • Hi Caper

        Trade #33 for #3? ….. both still Black, Gold, White jersies

        Case of Glennfidfitch in it for you if you can make it happen

      • Pengy, did you know JJ was trending on Twitter in Canada yesterday. Lol

        You’re not alone in the JJ not wanted club.

        Ray, TB threw alot of picks last night that borderline on interference none more obvious then the one Maroon thru on Griz that lead to a goal.
        Boston need to start doing the same to slow them down and give their d more time and space.

      • Good point Caper, and agree.
        They may take your advice tonight and have likely discussed with refs. If they don’t call it, they have no choice.

  9. X100!

  10. Add me to the list in favor of fining and suspending tortorella. Interviews are part of the job after all games. Do it WITH RESPECT or get fined AND suspended.
    This is giving our sport a black eye.

  11. As was the case in last years S.C. final the Bruins are a little soft in the hitting dept ….Chara has looked very slow Carlo has taken a step back in the physical play Kase gets banged every time he touches the puck and Krug has disappeared …. I said it before the way Neely & Sweeney played three game you would think they would roster a team with a little more size and physical play, they are truly a one line team

  12. I agree Boston need to be better but remember the other team is pretty good also. Chara is slow but would have him killing penalties all day every day. Carlo looks nervous but a great D man Krug to small and will not be resigned. Lauzon and Moore more physical maybe play one or both. Marchand is God best player on the ice I think Pasta still hurt seems to be avoiding contact. Coyle is great player and Jake needs to put in a couple more goals same for Kase. Krech looks good and Halak has been fine. Tamps doesn’t have many weaknesses and are real good skaters ostensibly will have hands full.

  13. Lol Boston will have hands full