NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 1, 2020

by | Sep 1, 2020 | NHL | 15 comments

The Lightning eliminate the Bruins, the Avalanche stay alive against the Stars, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: For the fourth time in six years, the Tampa Bay Lightning are going to the Eastern Conference Final. Victor Hedman scored in double overtime as the Lightning edged the Boston Bruins 3-2 to win their second-round series four games to one.

Tampa Bay LIghtning defenseman Victor Hedman (NHL Images)

Hedman had a goal and an assist while teammates Brayden Point and Kevin Shattenkirk each had two assists. Ondrej Palat and Anthony Cirelli scored in regulation for the Bolts, who played without winger Nikita Kucherov as he left the game before the third period after being high-sticked by Zdeno Chara in the first period. David Pastrnak and David Krejci scored for the Bruins.



SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Lightning did a good job keeping Boston’s top line under wraps as this series went on. The Bruins’ lack of secondary scoring and the absence of starting goalie Tuukka Rask were contributing factors to their early demise.

After reaching the Stanley Cup Final last season and winning the Presidents’ Trophy this season, questions are being asked if the Bruins’ championship window is closing. Asked about his future plans, the 43-year-old Chara said he hadn’t reached a decision, intending to be open-minded.

No word yet as to how long Kucherov might be sidelined. Bolts blueliner Ryan McDonagh returned to the lineup since being sidelined in the first game of this series.

The Colorado Avalanche avoided elimination by riding a five-goal first period to a 6-3 victory over the Dallas Stars in Game 5 of their second-round series. Avs third-string goalie Michael Hutchinson made 31 saves in his first-ever playoff start while the Stars’ Ben Bishop was pulled after giving up four goals on 19 shots. Nathan MacKinnon scored a goal and collected an assist, giving him a playoff-leading 23 points. Andre Burakovsky scored twice and added an assist. The Stars still lead the series 3 games to 2.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bishop was shaky in his first start since Aug. 13 but he had little help from his teammates. The Stars were flat-footed and unprepared in the first period, outshot 23-5 in the first period.

SPORTSNET: The New York Rangers hired Jacques Martin as their new assistant coach.

THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): Jeremy Rutherford cites sources claiming St. Louis Blues assistant general manager Bill Armstrong is believed to be a finalist for the vacant Florida Panthers GM position.

TSN: Thirteen NHL clubs will carry salary cap overages into next season. The Stars lead the list with over $2.9 million, followed by the Bruins ($1.928 million), Vancouver Canucks ($1.7 million), Carolina Hurricanes ($1.367 million), and Buffalo Sabres ($1.275 million). Because of the unusual circumstances emerging from this season, those teams have the option of dividing that amount equally over the next two seasons.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Edmonton Oilers re-signed forward Patrick Russell to a one-year, $700K contract extension.

TVA SPORTS: Montreal Canadiens owner Geoff Molson said the club intends to honor defenseman Andrei Markov, who spent his entire 16-season NHL career with the Habs.    




  1. Re Covid-19 tests “The league will not be providing information on the identity of any individuals or Clubs.”

    Maybe not, but if anyone associated with a specific team still in it – players, coach, trainer, whatever – tests positive, and they are following provincial protocols like everyone else and all connected have to go into quarantine for 14 days, it won’t be hard to figure out which club is hit.

  2. Boston vs Tampa series was great paced hockey.

    2020 is going to give us the Islanders vs the Stars when we need Tampa vs Vegas

    • Hi ds

      Don’t rule out Avs coming all the way back in this series

      I think it’s still a pretty fair possibility that it’s Bolts/Knights in SCF; but having both miss… that’s not only hard to imagine; but hard to stomach

      • I can’t see TB losing to the Isles. Of course it’s possible but I would bet on it.
        Knights and TB so far look like the best teams. Deep, talented, confident, physical.
        Kucherov is the big unknown for TB.
        So Francouz was unfit to play last night?
        So Avs down to their 3rd string, that is a problem. Might explain why Francouz was struggling.
        Would anyone on here start Bishop again next game?

      • The Isles give you nothing. their top 4D are solid. their 4th line…. Would hate to play against that line….

        Tampa is built so well.
        The D they dressed last night were picked @

        and their healthy scratches were picked #8 & #5

        Players bloom there

      • The isles are underrated ds, but TB looks really, really good. The Isles are a deep team, that knows what they are and are all in.
        But TB looks like they have figured it out.
        Their additions at the deadline fit like a glove.
        Vasilevsky is tough to beat and looks totally comfortable.
        If Kucherov plays their PP is top notch.
        It will be a tough series but a little more fire power and maybe the best tender in the league give TB the edge IMO.

      • The only thing that would trip up TB vs the Islanders is if they don’t put in a concentrated 60-minute game each game. I think they learned that lesson against Columbus.

        Having said that, not having Kucherov and Stamkos involved will enable the Isles tenacious checking to zero in on Point and Palat. It will be a grind.

  3. These high scoring games to me are exciting but I’m loaded with Knights in my pool…. so that’s killing me. Better be 8-0 Knights today and 1-0 Flyers in regulation (unassisted goal by Braun)

    I’m going to throw this poser out there

    Mac K right now has 13 game playoff point streak and 23 points….

    If Avs come back and win this series and say WCF goes 6 or 7… there is a possibility of

    Mac K finishing in the high 30’s in points ; only behind Wayne and Mario on the all time list; with 21 or 22 straight games with points… but then does NOT get to SCF… would you give him the Conn Smythe (Note… by definition it CAN be awarded to a non SC finalists…. “ Awarded to the most valuable player for his team in the playoffs“)…. hard to ignore say 21 G point streak; 38 points…. just asking

  4. Just wondering; for all the Boston people still giving Tuukka crap for leaving and going home; why is no one talking about the fact that Kase has played 17 games for Boston and has not scored a single goal. Sure glad they solved their problem of a winger on the Krejci line. Since he played in Anaheim, Kase was pretty much an unknown to me; but I am thoroughly unimpressed. He should be sliding down the depth chart behind Studnicka and possibly Bjork

    • yes, quite the overpayment for Kase to say the least .. he can’t generate or finish … time for Chara to enjoy the rest of his life, he has been a warrior and a tremendous player … wonder if Sweeney will have any interest in Matt Murray? Halak wasn’t the reason they lost but he will need to address his goalie situation …

  5. The Lightning are loaded … the scratched d-men are better than who the Pens play on a regular basis …

  6. Tampa escaped by the skin of their teeth last night. Vasilevskiy was the difference.

    The additions of Goodrow , Coleman and Maroon I believe we’re brilliant and exactly what this team needs to get over that hump.

    But if they have to go without Kucherov and Stamkos… this team will not be good enough.

    Boston, looks like it’s time for at least an overhaul. Starting with saying thank you and goodbye to Chara. This game has passed him by. And no, he won’t make a good mentor / leader etc to a young team elsewhere. He will be a waste of space , and money on any NHL team.

  7. Glad to hear that the Habs will honour Marky. Things didn’t end well for him in Montreal due to his stubborn personality and I was sorry to see he didn’t get his 1,000th game in. Maybe this will make amends.

  8. Boston played well last night unfortunately you can’t play well in one game and expect to win 4.

    Top line 0 points 5 vs 5 that won’t do it.

    Halak played well last night the only game he didn’t give up a softy.

    Krecji was Boston best player.

    Chara and Krug last game in Boston uniform should be last night.

    Chara the pace was just way to much for him, he was a liability every time he was on the ice.

    Kase late addition, didn’t get to practice with the team see what next year holds.

    Krug is no $7.5m if someone wants to pay him… I see you Montreal you can have him.

    Brandon Carlo was a disappointment for me, i was expecting so much more and to do some hitting.

    TB won the series, many may point the finger at Palat, Kucherov and Point; but, the defense was solid no second chances for Boston when or if they tried to get to the net.

    I did pick TB is 6, i was wrong. again.

    Boston need some bigger dman with Clifton, Krug and Griz all under 6ft isn’t a recipe for success.

    Window is more then closing it’s almost shut. Bergeron didn’t play very well and look like he lost a step against TB. No i’m not say trade Bergeron, just pointing out what i saw.

    Lastly we can all agree with Rask decision but you have to wonder what the core players and management think or really feel. As mentioned the window closing and the moment Rask decided to leave the bubble we all knew it was over.

    Sweeney and Neely are saying the right things but boy i bet there not happy with his decision when you know you only have 1 or 2 yrs left for this core to have an opportunity.

    See what the off season brings.

    • Ya Caper, gonna be an interesting off season in Boston.
      IMO they have to give it another go next season before the inevitable rebuild/retool starts.
      Rask – I have no idea how mgt or the team feels about it. If his child was seriously sick, or injured, he had to leave. In a normal year he misses a few days or a week and comes back. And I just can’t see his mates holding that against him.
      We don’t know what happened, nor does he need to explain it to the fans.

      If Chara retires and they let Krug walk, they have a big hole on LD. While I agree that $7.5 is way too much, he has leverage because of the situation.
      The only 2 LD they have with NHL experience are Grezlyk and Moore. Kinda weak IMO. You can bring up 2 rookies, but that is a big ask if you actually want to contend next season. Will Krug take a 1 year and give it one more go? I doubt it.

      They would have won the presidents trophy, it was a strange year, you don’t want to over react, but ya, that window to win a cup is barely open. Or it just closed last night because of the core’s age.
      I think they owe it to their core vets to give it one more go. Both Krecji and Rask on their final year, Bergeron 2 left.
      What that looks like? I dunno, but Sweeney and Neely need to figure if they give one more year and take it from there. 95% of the time a team waits a year too long to admit reality as opposed to a year early. So I would bet on that.