NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 16, 2021

by | Oct 16, 2021 | News, NHL | 14 comments

Recaps of Friday’s action, a look at Charlie McAvoy’s contract extension with the Bruins, plus the latest on Nathan MacKinnon, Dylan Larkin, Brady Tkachuk and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: Jack Hughes scored twice, including the game-winner, as the New Jersey Devils kicked off their season with a 4-3 overtime victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. Dougie Hamilton opened the scoring with his first goal as a Devil. The Blackhawks overcame a 3-1 deficit to force the extra frame on third-period goals by Kirby Dach and Dominik Kubalik.

New Jersey Devils center Jack Hughes (NHL Images).

The Vancouver Canucks blew a 4-2 lead in the third period but went on to defeat the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4 on a shootout goal by J.T. Miller, who also had a goal and two assists in regulation. Elias Pettersson and Alex Chiasson each had a goal and an assist for the Canucks. Travis Konecny and Claude Giroux scored for the Flyers to tie the game.

Marcus Foligno snapped a 1-1 tie with eight seconds remaining in the third period to lift the Minnesota Wild to a season-opening 2-1 win over the Anaheim Ducks. Jakob Silfverberg opened the scoring for the Ducks early in the second but Kevin Fiala tied it late in the period. Ducks backup Anthony Stolarz made 46 saves filling in for John Gibson, who’s listed as day-to-day with a lower-body injury suffered when he was run by the Winnipeg Jets’ Anthony Copp on Wednesday.


BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: The Bruins yesterday signed Charlie McAvoy to an eight-year, $76 million contract extension. It’s the richest deal in franchise history as the 23-year-old defenseman will earn an annual average value of $9.5 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This contract ensures McAvoy will spend his prime playing years in Boston. He’s being paid in line with other talented young defensemen who recently signed new contracts such as Colorado’s Cale Makar ($9 million) and Columbus’ Zach Werenski ($9.58 million). McAvoy’s a better all-around defenseman than those two and will be worth every penny for the Bruins going forward.

THE DENVER POST: Colorado Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar returns behind the bench for tonight’s game against the St. Louis Blues after emerging from COVID protocol. Center Nathan MacKinnon remains asymptomatic and sidelined for tonight’s game. Winger Valeri Nichushkin is week-to-week with an upper-body injury.

DETROIT HOCKEY NOW: Red Wings captain Dylan Larkin received a one-game suspension for throwing a punch with a gloved hand at Tampa Bay Lightning forward Mathieu Joseph after the latter hit him from behind. Larkin was injured on the play and could be sidelined longer as he missed practice on Friday to see a specialist. He missed the end of last season with a neck injury that require weeks of physical therapy.

WINNIPEG SUN: Jets center Mark Scheifele makes his season debut tonight against the San Jose Sharks. He was serving a four-game suspension for charging Montreal Canadiens center Jake Evans during Game 1 of their 2021 second-round playoff series.

OTTAWA SUN: Brady Tkachuk took part in his first practice with the Senators on Friday after signing his new seven-year contract on Thursday. He won’t be playing in tonight’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs but could make his season debut on Sunday against the Dallas Stars or Thursday against the San Jose Sharks.

Speaking of the Senators, goaltender Matt Murray has been placed on injured reserve retroactive to Oct. 12 due to a non-COVID-related illness.

TSN: Winger Mike Hoffman could make his season debut with the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday against the Sharks or Thursday against the Carolina Hurricanes. He signed a three-year contract with the Habs during the summer but suffered a lower-body injury during offseason training.

NEW YORK POST: Rangers center Ryan Strome will be sidelined for two games due to COVID-19 protocol.

THE PROVINCE: Travis Hamonic has not reported to the Vancouver Canucks’ AHL affiliate in Abbotsford but has not been suspended. He has been absent since the start of training camp to what is believed related to the league’s COVID-19 vaccination protocol. Hamonic passed unclaimed through waivers last week.

WGR 550: Buffalo Sabres forward Casey Mittelstadt (upper-body injury) and defenseman Henri Jokiharju (lower-body) are expected to miss at least two weeks.

TSN: The Los Angeles Kings placed defenseman Christian Wolanin on waivers.


  1. Jeez. I hope the Murrays don’t eat bananas at home. This guy has had more reasons to be “out” than a dog has fleas. Was he like this in Pittsburgh as well?

    • Did you see what O-Dog had to say George.

      Great we got Brady in the fold.

      • Yeah, I saw that Jeff. First time in a while I agreed 100% with his take.

    • Yes, Pittsburgh has zero luck in that category. Murray spends more time on the ir than he does on the ice.

  2. So Larkin was suspended and Joseph was not? Makes perfect sense, unless you saw the incident.

    • Right Captain? WTF?
      I don’t understand why they won’t call the hitting from behind. They do it from kids through junior and not in the NHL.

      I don’t get it.

      Larkin should have done what he did because Joseph deserved it, if it costs him a game so be it.

    • I agree. I was at the game, and had to watch the replay later to make sure that I saw what I thought I did. My eyes didn’t lie. It seems like the DOPS (or DOPE) are there to protect the refs from their bad calls/non-calls rather than the players. The league sent a terrible message by their action, and are setting up a potential ugly game when the two teams meet again in March at Amelie.

    • Let us list every cheap shot and nasty hit over the past few years which did not even get a penalty and Larkin gets a game for that…

    • Iago, hopefully Hedman has a chat with Joseph and tunes him in.
      He knew what went down, you could tell when he gave Larkin a tap after the scrum.

      Bush league. Most dangerous play in hockey and it doesn’t take much to send a guy head first into the boards when his momentum is already going that way. Joseph also knows that, and he had time to make the right decision.
      He’s young, he’ll learn, I hope.

    • The Larkin suspension is a joke. He was injured with a questionable hit and had every right to pop Joseph. A two-minute penalty for roughing would have been appropriate.

  3. George, you asked yesterday about Josh Ho-Sang and Cap Friendly. The website only shows players on NHL contracts. If Toronto wants to bring Ho-Sang up to the Leafs, they would sign him to an NHL contract and his name would appear on Cap Friendly. If he comes up and they want to put him back with the Marlies, he’d need to clear waivers.
    The Marlies play Belleville twelve times this year so there should plenty of games to see how Ho-Sang compares to the Sens prospects.

    • Ahh, makes sense now. Thanks BCLeafFan. I wonder how many more are functioning in the AHL under similar arrangements?

  4. I watched the mini vs Ana game last night. It was very much a snoozer. However I do believe that was the first time that I watched any NHL game where a woman was doing the play by play. Seen the colour commentary done often by women like Casey Campbell. But not the Play by play. Another positive step. I do recall last year or a previous year that Sportsnet/CBC had an all female broadcast once. I don’t believe I watched at that point not positive if the play by play was conducted by a woman. Perhaps this isn’t new.

    Leah Hextal did a good job last night. Clear spoken and stuck for the most part to the play on the ice. Though it could of been the uneventful game I did find her tone was kind of flat and the excitement added by play by play personal’s voice rising and getting excited when a scoring play occurs was a bit lacking on her part.

    But again it seemed Anaheim and Minnesota decided to help people with insomnia that night.

  5. Hitting the numbers became an automatic penalty to the point where players were turning to show their number in the last instant.

    That led to “cycling” the puck with forwards taking the corner and showing the numbers.

    Refs were calling it all the time and started to call it less as time wore on.

    Cross checking in front of the net is already evolving to one hand on the stick and double fists to the back.

    Mathieu Joseph should have been penalised but the refs have let a bunch of those this pre-season.

    We all like to blame the refs and DOPS, but while I have no proof or inside knowledge I don’t believe they are to blame, they get directions from above and are told what to do.