NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 14, 2021

by | May 14, 2021 | News, NHL | 29 comments

The Colorado Avalanche clinch the Presidents’ Trophy, the opening-round schedule of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs is released, plus the latest on Nikita Kucherov, John Carlson, Patrick Marleau and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The Colorado Avalanche clinched the Presidents’ Trophy for the best regular-season record by defeating the Los Angeles Kings 5-1. Tyson Jost scored twice for the Avalanche, who’ll face the St. Louis Blues in the opening round of the upcoming 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Colorado Avalanche win the 2020-21 NHL Presidents’ Trophy (NHL.com).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to the Avalanche on winning their first Presidents’ Trophy in 20 years.

Speaking of the Blues, they completed their regular-season schedule by overcoming a 3-0 deficit to thump the Minnesota Wild 7-3. David Perron, Brayden Schenn and Jordan Kyrou each scored two goals. The Wild will face off against the Vegas Golden Knights in the opening round.

The Calgary Flames downed the Vancouver Canucks 4-1. Earlier in the day, the Canucks confirmed sidelined center Elias Pettersson (upper-body injury) will miss their remaining games of this season but he’s working hard on a healthy return for next season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canucks still aren’t revealing the details of Pettersson’s injury but it’s believed to involve a wrist or hand.

The full schedule for the opening round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs was released Thursday.

It kicks off on Saturday, May 15 with the Boston Bruins facing off against the Washington Capitals. Sunday, May 16, sees the New York Islanders squaring off against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Tampa Bay Lightning tangle with the Florida Panthers, and the Minnesota Wild squaring off against the Vegas Golden Knights.

Monday, May 17 features the Nashville Predators facing the Carolina Hurricanes while the St. Louis Blues meet the Colorado Avalanche. Wednesday, May 19 sees the start of the Winnipeg Jets-Edmonton Oilers series while Thursday, May 20 features the start of the Montreal Canadiens-Toronto Maple Leafs series.

Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos and winger Nikita Kucherov practiced with their teammates on Thursday and are expected to be in the lineup for Game 1 of their series against the Panthers. Stamkos missed the final 16 games of the regular season with a lower-body injury while Kucherov missed the entire season following hip surgery on Dec. 29.

Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson said he’ll be ready for his club’s upcoming series against the Boston Bruins. He missed the final two games of the regular season with a lower-body injury.

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: Patrick Marleau plans to return for a 24th NHL season and isn’t ruling out coming back to the San Jose Sharks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The 41-year-old Marleau set the NHL record this season for most career games. This season was also statistically the worst of his career with just nine points in 56 games. If the Sharks don’t bring him back he could end up seeking a training camp tryout with another club.

THE PLAYERS’ TRIBUNE: Tyler Toffoli has embraced life with the Montreal Canadiens following his tenures with the Los Angeles Kings and Vancouver Canucks. He cited the Montreal fans and the atmosphere at the Bell Centre among his reasons for signing with the Canadiens last fall and looks forward to when fans can return to the building.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Toffoli said he wants what Montreal fans want: winning the Stanley Cup. He praised his teammates, singling out Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield. He also revealed he thought he would re-sign with the Canucks last fall but they never made him a contract offer.

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers have received permission to interview former Vegas Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant for their vacant head-coaching job. Meanwhile, Brian Leetch resigned as the Rangers’ hockey operations adviser.

Former New York Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk has taken on a coaching and advisory role with the club. Boychuk’s career was prematurely ended by an eye injury last season.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Blackhawks are being sued by a former player for alleged sexual assault in 2010 by their former video coach.


    • We’re going to light up Jordan Binnington like a Christmas Tree!!! GO AVS.

    • We’re going to light up Jordan Binnington like a Christmas Tree. GO AVS!!!!

  1. Why doesn’t Doug Wilson just get it over with and sign Marleau to a five year extension???

    Stamkos is a china doll, fragile as a potato chip, Brisbois should be looking to get out of that deal if possible ..

    • two very big “ifs” in tampa.panthers will likely ty to get in their way and make life difficult. btw, i’m 8 minutes from bbt arena and no one in town is wearing panther gear.hockey mad florida

      • Stamkos and Kucherov are healthy and ready just in time for the playoffs.
        It’s a miracle!

        Good morning Ed!
        Beautiful spring day outside!
        Playoffs start tomorrow!

    • I’ve been on that wagon quite a while-
      He’s never been the same since the horrific leg injury-

  2. Why such a delay in the Toronto vs Montreal series.

    Montreal finished the season on Wednesday and Toronto tonight. Why a week? Nice rest I guess.

    Don’t say because they’re waiting for the Canucks and Flames to finish, no one including the two teams care about them games.

    All series should start by Monday the latest

    • Caper, you may not want to say it but that seems to be the reason. I’m happy about it though. Gives the Habs a chance to rest and hopefully get their injured players back into the lineup.

      • Same for the Leafs, Howard, but it’s still ridiculous. Series starts next Thursday and Games 3 and 4 in Montreal are back to back.
        That makes sense?

    • They are waiting for the Canucks, Senators, Flames, Jets, Oilers and Leafs to finish their seasons.

      Points impact final seedings in playoffs and in the upcoming two drafts.

      By the time the cup finals are played most fans won’t even remember the first round anyways.

      • Habsfan30 on Calgary and Vancouver have regular season games after tonight and they have no bearing on the seeding

        Seedings are all set, get on with it.

      • Caper, yep.
        Pretty sure it isn’t a scheduling conflict in the CDN arenas.

      • Caper,
        Seeding for the playoffs is set, seeding for the Seattle draft and junior draft is not set and all of the North teams with games left have the opportunity to change their place.

        You have to finish your division before continuing to the next step, why is that unusual or hard to understand.?

        Enjoy the upcoming playoffs .

      • What I think Caper is saying is that why delay the start of some of playoff series because of the VCR Cgy games.
        Play them, but let’s get going with the playoffs already. Draft seeding has nothing to do with the playoffs.

      • Hi Caper and Hfan30

        Playoff seeding is not complete yet

        First round set and then winner plays winner

        However… semis re-seed.. lowest v highest… and determines “home ice” advantage

        Leafs win tonight and they leapfrog Panthers and *Pens

        *Pens currently showing behind Leafs (game still to play)… but a Leafs loss in reg…. Pens back above Leafs… points tied, RW tied; ROW tied; but Pens have more W’s

        Leafs want a reg V tonight… then if matched with Panthers or Pens… home ice adv

        Similarly …. Oil get to OT or win in Reg…. Leapfrog Bruins … if matched in Semis

    • The Oilers, with 72 points, have a game with the Canucks on May 15. A win would give them more points than the Bruins.

      The four teams that advance to the Stanley Cup Semifinals will be re-seeded based on their regular season point totals, and then placed into a new 1 vs. 4 and 2 vs. 3 bracket. That means the traditional Eastern Conference champion vs. Western Conference champion format is gone for this year. Edmonton vs. Boston could happen.

      • Hi Francis

        Late to the game today and reading posts (and responding to them) North to South visually

        So… I duplicated ur thought re Oil/Bruins w/o having read your post (at the time)

        Sorry for the duplication

  3. The only one more injury prone than stamkos is Kase just breath on him and he’s out with multiple contusions. My picks are Bruins, Tampa, Toronto, Minn. Islanders, Edmonton, Colorado, and entire men’s varsity squad.

  4. Means absolutely nothing unless you’re into betting but interesting that the Bruins are -130 favorite over the Caps

    Go Bruins !!!!!

  5. Just plucked down $200 on Carolina to win the 2021 SC…

    • Congrats Joe Wise choice!

  6. Joe, I wouldn’t go so far as to label that a “safe bet” – but it’s a bet with lots of promise. Well-coached and well-balanced, the Hurricanes are quite capable of going all the way. Good luck

    • I was looking at all the season’s results and the one thing that surprised me is how the Canes, followed by the Avs and Leafs as the teams that lost the least.
      Canes only lost 12 times and by the time of this writing both the Avs and Leafs lost 13….all three teams are usually talked about their offense and its potency… it seems all three are very dangerous teams both with offense and defense.

      I cant wait to see these playoffs. The west is the only division I can’t pick a favorite as the wild also did better than most people give them credit so it’s not an easy knights vs avs final. The east looks like either the caps or the pens to come out of that one and the central I think it will be the cats. North should be the Leafs but having said that, it’s the Leafs.

    • Hope your coffee budget won’t take a hit, Joe.

  7. You gotta say the Nucks dropped the ball come resigning their players. Toffoli was a huge mistake and cudos to the dirty Habs for getting him… I wished the Leafs would somehow get him. Skilled team player that does pretty much everything you can ask a player to do to help his team win and loves playing for whoever he plays for.
    What would these standings turn out if the Nucks resigned just two of their free agents that they elected to let walk?

    • Yeah, I was hoping Dorion would go after him too – always enjoyed watching him with the Ottawa 67s.

  8. Prez trophy came down to a coaching(possibly GM) decision gaff

    Right up against the Cap…. Knights played 15 skaters v Avs then played 17 against Sharks

    They won 6-0 over Sharks…. 15 skaters would still have same outcome

    Lost 2-1 to Avs 2 days earlier…. outplayed Avs for 2 periods; 3rd period goal wins it

    All they needed was to get to OT… and Prez trophy goes to Knights

    You’d think the choice of when to play 15 skaters vs 17 skaters would have been an easy one

    That West Div final will be a great series