NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 5, 2021

by | May 5, 2021 | News, NHL | 44 comments

Connor McDavid moves closer to 100 points, the Hurricanes move closer to their first Presidents’ Trophy, Tom Wilson’s fine draws condemnation from the Rangers, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid collected two assists in a 4-1 victory over the Vancouver Canucks. McDavid has a league-leading 93 points on the season with five games remaining in the schedule. Leon Draisaitl scored twice for the Oilers, who sit in second place in the Scotia North Division with 66 points.

Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: McDavid’s chances of reaching 100 points in 56 games are improving. The Oilers play the Canucks three more times and the Montreal Canadiens twice. The Habs did a good job containing McDavid through their first five games, limiting the Oilers’ captain to just two assists in those contests. However, McDavid lit up the Canadiens for six points during their last two meetings.

The Carolina Hurricanes overcame a 2-0 deficit to down the Chicago Blackhawks 6-3. Andrei Svechnikov and Teuvo Teravainen each scored two goals for Carolina while Alex DeBrincat tallied twice for Chicago. Blackhawks center Kirby Dach missed the game due to scar tissue aggravation in his right wrist.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Hurricanes (79 points) moved closer to winning their first Presidents’ Trophy, holding a four-point lead over the Florida Panthers with a game in hand for the top spot in the Discover Central and the overall standings.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby scored twice and collected an assist in a 7-3 drubbing of the Philadelphia Flyers. Jake Guentzel had a goal and two assists for the Penguins, who regained first place in the MassMutual East Division with 73 points.

The New Jersey Devils nipped the Boston Bruins 4-3 in overtime. Pavel Zacha scored twice, including the game-winner. With 69 points, Boston sits two behind the second-place Washington Capitals. Bruins defenseman Brandon Carlo returned to action after being sidelined a month with an oblique muscle injury.

A 45-save performance by minor-league call-up Michael Houser gave the Buffalo Sabres a 4-3 shootout win over the New York Islanders. Anders Bjork scored two goals and regulation and the winning goal in the shootout. Houser has two wins in as many games for the Sabres. The Islanders sit one point behind the Bruins.


The NHL department of player safety served Washington Capitals winger Tom Wilson the maximum $5,000.00 fine for roughing New York Rangers winger Pavel Buchnevich during Monday’s game.

NEW YORK POST: Wilson also slammed Rangers winger Artemi Panarin to the ice but received no supplemental discipline for that incident. Panarin suffered a lower-body injury and will miss the remaining three games of the Rangers’ season. Following the announcement of Wilson’s fine, the Rangers released a statement condemning the mild punishment. They considered it a dereliction of duty by NHL head of player safety, George Parros, declaring him unfit to continue in his current role.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Wilson’s slap on the wrist sparked outrage on social media and widespread condemnation among many NHL pundits. However, the Rangers’ public statement is a shot across the bow.

Team owner James Dolan is no fan of league commissioner Gary Bettman dating back to the latter’s smackdown of Dolan’s 2007 attempt to set up a Rangers website outside of the NHL.com realm. The league will likely fine the Rangers as Bettman won’t tolerate any public challenge to his authority. I doubt this leads to any major changes in the player safety department.

As for Wilson, he’s expected to be in the Capitals lineup tonight against the Rangers.

SPORTSNET: Milan Lucic has agreed to waive his no-movement clause to allow the Calgary Flames to leave him unprotected in this summer’s NHL expansion draft. The move allows the Flames the opportunity to protect a player like Mikael Backlund, Dillon Dube or Andrew Mangiapane.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: An unselfish act by Lucic to give Flames general manager Brad Treliving some flexibility in the expansion draft. However, it’s unlikely the Seattle Kraken will claim him. The 32-year-old winger’s best seasons are behind him plus he carries a $5.25 million cap hit for the next two seasons.

NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON: Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov was added to the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol list for the second time this season. Kuznetsov and teammate Ilya Samsonov didn’t dress for Monday’s game against the Rangers as a disciplinary measure for missing a team function. It’s uncertain if he tested positive or broke protocol.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s speculation over Kuznetsov’s future in Washington. I’ll have more in today’s Rumor Mill.

THE ATHLETIC: San Jose Sharks winger Evander Kane has been sued for $15 million by a lender for punitive damages stemming from a $1.5 million loan. Kane is in the midst of a tangle Chapter 7 bankruptcy case.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kane’s financial issues haven’t affected his play on the ice. He’s the Sharks scoring leader with 22 goals and 45 points in 52 games.

OTTAWA SUN: Senators defensemen Thomas Chabot and Josh Brown are sidelined by injuries that will keep them out of the lineup for the club’s remaining four games of the season.

THE PROVINCE: The Vancouver Canucks are moving their AHL affiliate from Utica, NY to Abbotsford, BC, beginning in 2021-22.


  1. Parros… a complete and utter mockery!!!!

    I would love to see (they should but won’t) , 29 other team official statements that simply state “we support the position given by the New York Rangers in this matter”

    Parros had an easy out on this….. much banter on the net has surrounded what Wilson did to the Breadman because he was ragdolled and is out now… and Breadman is the premier player….Wilson’s side would have argued I’m sure… that he’d already been jumped…. a lame and completely out of touch excuse and rationale but he (Wilson) would have used it

    What is missing is the punch to Buch already face down on the ice… that alone is suspendible…. and he’s a repeat offender ….. so Parros could have taken the easy route…. suspended without elaboration or detailed rationale…. case closed

    Instead he took the maniacal route of a minuscule fine …. proportionately equivalent (to Wilson) of a meal tip to most fans

    In Parros’ title is “Player Safety”

    It needs to be changed to “Player Endangerment”

    He has now “entitled” Wilson to inflict more damage and mayhem… or, I fear, much much much worse

    Parros has potentially exposed himself, the Caps and the NHL to a future wrongful death suit

    Instead of suspending Wilson (as per the expected and rightful duties as head of DOPS)…. he awarded Wilson a 007 Licence to Kill for the paltry sum of $5K

    • Message to Konecny, don’t poke the bear, the penguin, the sid.

      Crosby has a mean streak of his own but tends to reply to provocation the old fashioned way, with goals.

      • Hi Habfan30

        In that case … DO poke the Sid… but only to a point of motivation…not injury👍👍

    • Pengy, as i mentioned yesterday I do not believe his actions against Panarin were suspend able;

      I do believe his actions against Buchnevich was, as Wilson drove his head face first into the ice and then punched him in the back of the head.

      Agree the play against Panarin was wrong and extremely dangerous because Panarin had no helmet on, just don’t see a suspension there.

      The letter by the Rangers was disappointing from the stand point they specifically mentioned Panarin and left out the extremely dangerous driving Buchnevich head into the ice.

      Be interesting if the Rangers decided to skate off the ice tonight and not play if Wilson is in the lineup.

      • It is suspendable caper . Hard to find a more clear example of intent to injure , specifically on the panarin part , with no bucket on which Wilson was fully aware of as he raged him to the ice

      • Craig as i stated i believe Buchnevich incident was more suspend able then the Panarin incident

        totally agree both are bad and it would be nice that Wilson got a several game suspension. I be happy if he got two separate ones; 7 games on the Buchnevich incident and another 7 for the Panarin incident.

      • I enjoy a legit fight as much as anybody, but the actions of Wilson against both Buchnevich and Panarin were deplorable! Wilson is a good player. He doesn’t need to act like that, and to have such a minor consequence is deplorable. For my money, Washington has both a Great Eight and a Great Ape. The guy acts like he’s got steroid rage.

      • Caper
        Didn’t you reiterate that you didn’t believe his actions were suspendable? That’s where my explanation stemmed from.

      • I would agree with your second take , suspend him for both incidents separately. Both meet the criteria , Judge each one on its own , 7 for each is a lot closer to what was called for than a 5k fine and nothing

      • Craig i said his action against Panarin would get him a suspension.

        I did say i thought his actions against Buchnevich deserved a suspension.

        Panarin was more about no helmet being dangerous; if you could apply intent to injure on that, i’m not sure, it certainly was deplorable but i don’t know if you could make a case for intent to injured and if you can great.

        I feel the driving of Buchnevich head into the ice and a punch to the back of his head is intent to injure and he should’ve been suspended for them actions.

      • A couple of years ago, Wilson’s fellow punk teammate Hathaway was suspended 3 games for spitting at an opponent.

        If that is suspendable, then surely grabbing a helmet-less opponent by the hair and whipping them backwards to the ice is.

      • If I had a choice of being slammed forehead first with a helmet on to the ice, or being ripped by the hair backwards head first into the ice, I’d take the helmet forehead first option.

        What he did to Buchnevich was intent to injure. Buchnevich will dress tonight.

        What he did to Panarin is intent to end his career and possibly worse. Panarin is out.

        Parros and the league are an absolute joke. Nys call for Parros head is totally justified.

        Hard to imagine no retaliation tonight . Not sure who’s up to that task, probably no single Ranger. But I’d call up Gettinger and have him and maybe Smith just pummel this guy every chance they get.

      • Hi Caper

        We’re on same page…. Mr. Kill first, answer questions later, needed to be suspended…. the rational or incident (Buch or Breadman or both) to me is irrelevant… suspension…. AND a long one due to his repeat offender status … WAS required, AND could have potentially headed off a career ending (life ending ?) future escapade by Wilson

        Now it is “open season” on any player

        The only out for the league with the safest outcome; is Wilson doing a light hit from behind into boards.. no injury… Parros then MUST send him packing until 21/22 as a repeat offender…. only weeks ago he got 7 games… so final 3 reg season games and full playoffs …. to a minimum of 15 games (if Caps ousted in playoffs before 15 games reached… the 15 games carries over to next year)

    • Your fear of “much, much worse” could go either way Pengy.

      At some point we are either going to see Wilson end someone’s career (or worse) or we are going to see a frustrated opponent attempt to end his (think Bertuzzi-Moore or McSorley-Brashear). Either way, the NHL is playing with fire here and needs to extinguish it.

      • DM, yep.

      • Two wrongs do not make a right unless of course it puts an end to a problem once and for all. The problem here is Wilson. His career needs to be ended by the league before somebody does it to him on the ice. After all that’s what he’s trying to do much of the time to his opponents. If I’m the Rangers I bring up some Neanderthal from the AHL and beat this guy within an inch of his life if the league won’t take the appropriate action. There I said it!

      • DM

        Fully agree…. Bettman needs to grow some and end this…. he has the power


        Laroque went on Social media today stating that he’d be up for a 1 day contract with Rangers just to put Wilson in his place

        I don’t know the Rangers farm system well… anybody that is worthy of the challenge?

  2. Pens… great turnaround game…. that game was necessary after the crap show Monday

    Pens out score Flyers 9-1 (actual result was 7-3 … 2 own goals)

    No own goals…. would mean Jarry’s save percentage (in game) would jump from 909 to 968

    Pens in first with JUST TWO games left … but can finish (as can Bruins, Isles, Caps) …. 1st or 2nd or 3rd or 4th… no other Div is even anywhere near that tight…. should be great playoff hockey

  3. Last nights win by Carolina locked up finishing ahead of Florida. Tampa is still in contention for 1st place in the division and has the regulation win advantage over Carolina. They have Dallas and Florida for the remaining games.

  4. Apparently, according to Smith, the Chabot injury is more of a day to day thing – in other words, no surgery or long healing process needed.

    The reasoning is, no need to risk aggravating it with so few games left and with Chabot still interested in suiting up for Team Canada at the World’s.

    The one to Josh Brown is less clear so far.

    So, for the balance of the season their D will be Zaitsez, Zub, Brannstrom, Mete, Bernard-Docker and probably either Thompson or Alsing.

    So, 4 rookies on D to go along with 4 up front (Norris, Formenton, Pinto and Stutzle) and 1 in goal (Gustavsson).

    • I’m not upset by this. No pressure left this season, let the kids play and keep cementing themselves. Barring a trade, I think it’s very likely that the team that returns next year will be made of players in the organization. Looking over the UFA’s … unless Hyman or Saad become available, there is nobody I am really taking the time to pursue over people already in the organization.

      Time to see what we got! Really hope that a positive from the Chabot injury is giving Brannstrom a chance to play more offensive minutes.

  5. The Bruins lost to the Devils last night … the sky is falling in Boston this morning …

    • Good Morning Ed!

  6. If Swayman was in net the bruins would have won that game last night that may have been Halak’s final game as a bruin he wasn’t very good last night. We now know who Rasks backup goalie is.

    • Rick, I think he is just getting the taxi squad guys some game action. Oilers did the same thing with a couple D last night.

      Might need em.

  7. The punishment handed out by Parros was disturbing.He let his conservative Ivy league education get in the way.Would Wilson be running around if he had to face Ryan Reaves 8 times in the season and during the playoffs.

    • If you think Princeton is some kind of bastion of conservative thought then you must be about 1,000 miles to the Left of Bernie Sanders. Regardless, this decision has nothing to do with Parros’ educational background. Maybe something to do with taking far too many punches to the head since acquiring that degree though…

      What really needs to change is the culture in the NHL, from executives to GMs to coaches to players. Personally, I say Bravo to NYR for their “shot across the bow” and do wish other teams would support them in it.

      I can only recall one time when a player called out a teammate for a dirty hit, which was several years ago when Andy Ference called out Dan Paille (who was hardly a headhunter like Wilson). The general response at the time was not “good for Ference” but “how dare he, his days as a Bruin are numbered”.

      I do hope more severe punishments are negotiated into the next CBA.

      • DM

        the “ 1,000 miles to the Left of Bernie Sanders” line cracked me up…. however… although my Geography is poor…. I’m fairly sure that the Kremlin is a tad more than a 1,000 miles to Bernie’s left… I’m guessing it is somewhere in the 4,000 to 4,500 miles to his left 🤔

    • Yes Wilson would.

  8. Rangers fine today will be higher than Wilson’s…..

  9. As Lyle mentions, McDavid had 6 points in 2 games against the Habs two weeks ago. But it’s worth noting that the Habs won one of the games. I don’t care if McDavid notches a few points in the two remaining Habs-Oilers game as long as the Habs win. The way Vancouver is playing, though, he may reach 100 in the 3 remaining games against them.
    Props to the Rangers for that bold statement. The slap on the wrist given to Wilson is a disgrace.

  10. BTW… Ghost is having a hearing for his late hit (after Friedman scored) that sent Friedman precariously into the boards … and yes should be suspendible…. the outcome from that meeting will be a “flip of the coin” after the mockery of what Parros gave Wilson

    No matter what Ghost gets… there will be another crap storm on Parros after this…… and well deserved I might add

    If he is offered a hearing I thought that there is already a minimum suspension being considered (2 games??)… does anybody know on that?

    Far cry from the “fine” Wilson got

    Ghost does deserve a suspension for sure…. could have been very serious …..but Friedman was uninsured

    Wilson…. could have seriously injured Buch; DID injure the Breadman…. and Wilson is absolutely the worst repeat offender… and it was only weeks ago that he basically got off “Scott free” with but 7 games for attempt to decapitate (Carlo)…. 5 K for a menacing and maniacal act…. he was actually “rewarded” with a 5K fine and NOT penalized…. should have been gone for balance (reg season and playoffs ) of 21/22…. with a final warning… one more infraction… lifetime ban

    Someone will get maimed; paralyzed ; or perhaps may die unless Wilson is suspended LONG TIME

    W T F…. 😡💩🤬😡💩🤬😡💩🤬👎👎👎👎👎

  11. Slick62, comment from yesterday – RE – GOON – Wilson

    Should have a psych evaluation , drug test – steroids , other is VALID ….,
    This guy is going to seriously hurt someone !!
    Definitely , a mental health issue with this Guy !
    Kadri was under the microscope for trivial acts , ruined his career in Toronto ..
    Wilson is a “Monster” and discipline – Long term suspension , with medical care attended .

  12. In all of the legitimate comments about the leagues terrible failure to deal appropriately with Wilson, no one seems to join me in wondering if Wilson is sociopathic. I’m not being overly dramatic.

    There are a lot of definitions floating around the internet but here is one:

    “The defining characteristic of the sociopath is a profound lack of conscience—a flaw in the moral compass that typically steers people away from breaking common rules and toward treating others decently.”

    Other typical descriptions include aggression and a lack of empathy towards others. Wilson is such an outlier in his behaviour that he is almost alone in modern NHL player conduct. Chris Simon is the only other player I can think of with such an egregious suspension record and he had the decency to go on an indefinite leave from the game.

    Does anyone doubt that Wilson will seriously injure a player or end someone’s career unless the league straps on a set of balls in its dealings with him? Player Safety has been a complete joke this year. The NHLPA is in a tough spot with one of their own being a major problem but one has to imagine behind the scenes that it is not just the NYR players who are alarmed and upset with Player Safety.

    • LJ

      on board with you

      This is not new for Wilson

      I watched him do similar when he was 15…. parents, coaches both teams; all players … totally aghast as a player is carried off due to Wilson full charge full tilt hit from behind … unsuspecting player… knocking him out… all the while Wilson laughs

      HE IS VERY APT TO MAIME PARALYZE OR KILL someone unless Bettman steps in

      NHL, Caps, Parros, Bettman… in addition to the Socio-goon …..are getting closer and closer to eventually being sued… for what could unfortunately end up being… wrongful death

      League already in litigation over their culpability on brain damage (fighting) …. and losing their battle

      They have nothing to stand on here as they could have; and should have; done something about this

  13. if this Patrick Kane and not Panarin in the same exact situation what does the league do

    • Parros might have upped the penalty (on top of the $5K ) with a “stern” talking to (Wilson) … “young man… let’s not see that shenanigans again… next time I’ll be real angry”…. “now on your way…. say 5 hail Mary’s while your at it”. “ go on… git”

      After Wilson off call.. George to self:

      “Flaming Nora, what a silly young lad that Tommy is”

  14. I hope Parros is fired because of this. This is more than turning a blind eye, Man he was ( wilsonJ ragdolling almost the entire team. I’m not fan of the rangers but for the players to try and help out their teammates and not have anyone to even put a hold on that jerk and pull him off is awful. Lastnight is an example of just how out of control and scary Wilson is. Panarin is an exciting big time player. I’m glad the rangers stood up to be counted with their response. If Bettman doesn’t do something about this I mean have long extended chat with Parros. There are a lot of owners who wouldn’t mind showing him the door fans hate Bettman and some of the owners don’t really like the guy much either. Bettman knows this won’t end here.

    • Hi DM

      TSN reporting “ unrelated” and “coincidental”…. is bull 💩

      3 games left… do it then (after the 3 games) …. at End of Season

      Doing it now can be interpreted in only one way…. ownership got a call from Gary or Bill who said “WTF” … do something

      This is a complete crock

      Relating this to underperforming…. per Dreger “ Another source says ownership felt the Rangers underachieved this season.”…. I don’t think so…. with Breadman out for a spell and with such a tight Div, and Rangers with a young and up and coming team that actually has performed well for good chunks of the year….I call that statement in the pile labelled “Liar liar, pants on fire”

      This whole debacle just puts a broader (if it could get any bigger) grin on Wilson’s face

      Number 1 son texted that George Laroque (via social media) today offered up his services (to Rangers) for a 1 day contract… to play against the Caps… where he (Laroque) said that he’d settle things with Wilson

      It won’t happen… but I fully believe that Laroque would put every single ounce into his “lesson du jour”

  15. I am no way saying Wilson should not have been suspended . But I do think the $5000 max fine is a joke . Wilson will make that in less than 1 min tonight. Maybe 10 % of there cap hit as a max fine may make players think twice . Will have to be talked about next CBA but a thought .

  16. It’s easy to say Wilson’s a sociopath or deranged, or he flips a switch, but at the end of the day the NHL continues to employ him.

    The DOPS and Parros base their judgements on the rules and and their constraints.

    It’s bad enough that hockey has been fighting the image of ” I went to a fight last night and a hockey game broke out”

    Pro sports has been trying to protect its players, cutting head shots, below the knee hits, helmet to helmet hits, eliminating most hits to QBs .

    Wilson will be done in by the NHL TV deal as Bettman and the Board of Governors try to expand the reach of the NHL.

    Wilson has shown his intimidation relies on attempts to injure his opponents and the Capitals promote his living in their opponents heads rent free.

    Wilson deserves a ban and the Capitals deserve a serious fine with teeth. Draft picks or Cap space reduction considering this :


  17. Parros is the wrong guy , for his position ..
    Was he not a “goon” as well , in his playing days !!

  18. No Balls Parros has whiffed numerous times and it is getting worse.
    Shanahan set the standard how hard is it to gett back to that?
    Speaking of eunics a woman in charge of DPS would be a fresh approach and no doubt better run.