NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 28, 2021

by | Nov 28, 2021 | News, NHL | 36 comments

Canadiens assistant GM Scott Mellanby resigns amid reports linking Habs to Jeff Gorton, Artemi Panarin and Andrei Svechnikov fined, Islanders games postpone through Nov. 30, game recaps and much more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


SPORTSNET: Scott Mellanby resigned yesterday as assistant general manager of the Montreal Canadiens amid reports linking the club to former New York Rangers GM Jeff Gorton.

Former New York Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton (NHL.com).

Elliotte Friedman reported there’s a widespread belief Marc Bergevin will not return as Canadiens general manager following this season. Friedman felt Bergevin recommended Mellanby as his successor or for a more significant role with the club. There had been recent discussions between team owner Geoff Molson and Mellanby but the latter resigned after being informed the club was going in a different direction.

The Canadiens reportedly sought and received permission from the New York Rangers to speak with former Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton. Friedman said Gorton would not be taking over as the Habs GM but could fill the role of president of hockey operations or another senior front-office role.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Based on the initial reports, it appears Molson has made a mess of this situation by upsetting Mellanby and alienating Bergevin, who is now a lame-duck general manager. TVA Sports’ Louis Jean reports Bergevin was hurt by how this went down, that he was kept in the dark and only learned about this situation through the media.

Nevertheless, this could still work out for the Canadiens if the end result is Gorton taking over as president of hockey operations. It would be a significant step toward returning this floundering franchise to respectability and perhaps a long-overdue rebuild.

Gorton did a fine job building up the Rangers roster. He signed Artemi Panarin, acquired Mika Zibanejad, Adam Fox and Jacob Trouba and drafted Alexis Lafreniere and Kaapo Kakko. Before that, he was an assistant general manager for several seasons with the Boston Bruins. During a brief period as their interim GM in 2006, he acquired Tuukka Rask, drafted Phil Kessel, Brad Marchand and Milan Lucic, and signed Zdeno Chara and Marc Savard.

Molson has indicated the role of Canadiens GM has to be filled by a Francophone or someone who is bilingual. Gorton is neither but he would hold a role of considerable influence within the organization with input on trades, signings, drafting and player development.

Should Gorton get the role of hockey ops president, finding Bergevin’s successor becomes their next priority. Sportsnet’s Eric Engels mused about Patrick Roy, Roberto Luongo, Martin Madden Jr., Vincent Damphousse and Mathieu Darche as possible candidates. Jeff Marek reported the Canadiens have not contacted Patrick Roy about a role in the organization.

It will be interesting to see how the coming week unfolds in Montreal.


NHL.COM: Speaking of the Canadiens (6-15-2), they got a rare win by upsetting the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-3. Jake Allen made a career-high 47 saves for the win while Josh Anderson scored twice and Tyler Toffoli and Christian Dvorak each had a goal and two assists. Penguins captain Sidney Crosby also had a goal and two assists while teammate Bryan Rust remains sidelined by an undisclosed injury. Canadiens defenseman Chris Wideman missed the game with an upper-body injury.

The Florida Panthers’ season-opening home winning streak has ended at 11 games after falling 4-1 to the Seattle Kraken. Former Panthers goalie Chris Driedger made 33 saves while teammate Jordan Eberle celebrated his 800th career NHL game with two goals.

Mikko Rantanen’s hat trick powered the Colorado Avalanche over the Nashville Predators 6-2. Cale Makar collected three assists while Nazem Kadri and Andre Burakovsky each had two helpers. Avalanche defenseman Bowen Byram returned to the lineup after missing six games with a concussion.

The Edmonton Oilers ran up a 3-0 lead over the Vegas Golden Knights and held on for a 3-2 victory. Mikko Koskinen turned aside 36 shots while Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Zach Hyman and Jesse Puljujarvi scored for the Oilers. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl were held off the score sheet by the Golden Knights.

Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar had three assists and Carl Gundstrom tallied twice to double up the Ottawa Senators 4-2. Kings forward Brendan Lemieux was ejected from the game for biting Senators captain Brady Tkachuk’s hand during a scrum in the third period. Tkachuk wasn’t pleased, calling what Lemieux did “the most gutless thing somebody could ever do” following the game.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Lemieux could also earn supplemental discipline for his antics. He bit Tkachuk’s hand hard enough to draw blood.

An overtime goal by rookie Lucas Raymond gave the Detroit Red Wings a 3-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres, handing the latter their fifth loss in six games. The Sabres’ Jeff Skinner sent the game to overtime with the tying goal late in the third period.

The Dallas Stars picked up their fourth straight win by nipping the Arizona Coyotes 3-2. Braden Holtby made 25 saves for the Stars, Joe Pavelski had two assists and Roope Hintz scored his seventh goal in his last eight games.

St. Louis Blues forwards Pavel Buchnevich and Ivan Barbashev each scored twice in a 6-3 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets. Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko collected three assists. Jackets defenseman Adam Boqvist scored twice for the Jackets. Before the game, the Blues placed winger James Neal on injured reserve.

The Winnipeg Jets overcame a 2-0 deficit to beat the Calgary Flames 4-2. Kyle Connor led the way with two goals for the Jets to snap a five-game skid while ending the Flames’ win streak at four games. Flames winger Milan Lucic was ejected in the second period for boarding Jets defenseman Dylan DeMelo.


NEW YORK POST: Rangers winger Artemi Panarin was fined $5,000.00 for throwing one of his hockey gloves at Boston Bruins winger Brad Marchand on Friday. Panarin said he was incensed over Russia-related insults made toward him by Marchand.

NEWSOBERVER.COM: Carolina Hurricanes winger Andrei Svechnikov was fined $5,000.00 for kneeing Philadelphia Flyers forward Scott Laughton on Friday.

NEW YORK POST: The NHL has postponed the New York Islanders’ next two games through Nov. 30 after Casey Cizikas became the eighth player on the club to test positive for COVID-19.

OTTAWA SUN: The Senators yesterday placed goaltender Matt Murray on waivers. He’s expected to report to their AHL affiliate in Belleville if he goes unclaimed today. The Senators also claimed forward Adam Gaudette off waivers yesterday from the Chicago Blackhawks.

NBC SPORTS PHILADELPHIA: Flyers forward Nate Thompson missed practice yesterday after suffering a shoulder injury during Friday’s game against the Hurricanes.


  1. B’s should win today and Tuesday against Van and Det. But will lose against Preds they don’t appear to be able to compete against the good teams. What do you think Joe. ( none else needs to reply) you think Sweeney has enough to guts to actually swing a deal to bring in some players to help this team

    • Sitting here sipping my BRC & thinking on how the Bruins can get better with little cap space to play with ….so any moves they make would have to be by giving up salary….. a need as most Bruins fans know is a #2 center move Coyle back to wing next is a rock solid stay at home Dman …. and for me the last go get is a tough winger that is very willing to get involved …. Like a Ross The Boss type …. This past offseason the Bruins had a lot of cap space to play with and they went out and spent it all on depth pieces , they could’ve signed a couple of difference makers and used their minor league players as depth …

      • I don’t get it?!? If we screw up on the job we get a memo, if it happens again rep time. How does Sweeney do it, 2015 draft .. horrible, horrible pickups. If This was Montreal Sweeney would have been shown the door after 2015. I guess the only good thing about all of this is that if the bruins miss the playoffs It’s the end of the road for The Odd Couple Donny and Lurch. Sweeney knew what this club needed and once again failed to deliver. I’d like the bruins to make the playoffs but with this lineup they won’t make it out of the first round. They have got to try & get Hertl.

    • Now you’re dictating who should – and shouldn’t – reply to your posts? Jaysus.

    • Rick, first you wanted OEL and that would’ve been a terrible move.

      Then Eichel, who everyone knew wasn’t happening.

      You wanted Swayman as the #1 now you want him I’m the minors.

      However you are consistent of wanting Sweeney fired.

      Boston is a team that needs to compete for 60 minutes, there defense isn’t strong enough or good enough to prevent high scoring chances.

      What was Cassidy doing with the 4th line out for a defensive zone draw against the Rangers top line when NY scored with 5 seconds remaining in the 1st?

      Vancouver probably happy to be playing Boston and vise versa; therefore should be a good game.

      • Hi Cappy, “ Why don’t you go & bore a hole in yourself & let the sap run out?”

      • Hi, Rick. Why don’t you (fill in the blank. just about anything can go here).

    • How did that work out for you ? Barely got by Van, not so against Det.

  2. Wow you should definitely check your head when one of those idiot tkachuk brothers calls you out. Who bites a hand, honestly?!?!
    Crazy finish in Pitt last night. Josh Anderson scored 2 empty net goals and one he didn’t even have to put in the net. Apparently as long as the whistle gets blown first it’s ok to whack an opposing player in the face with a stick but hip checks are no longer legal. Montreal was seriously outplayed and Jake Allen played the best game of his career.

    • I remember biting allegations once made by the Nordiques against Claude Lemieux, Brendan’s father. Given that it came from the Nords, I would tend to dismiss the charges. But maybe that apple didn’t fall far from the tree.

  3. Cassidy calling out Haula and DeBrusk ( could they not have traded this guy ) & this is on Sweeney and his terrible offseason moves

  4. Bruins -233 favorite tonight …I’ll pass

    • Until they take Foligno, Kuhlman and Blidh out of the lineup I am not convinced the bruins are even a playoff contender.

  5. Re Pens/Habs last night…

    Excellent game by Anderson; Sid; E-Rod…. But game decision goes to the spectacular play of Allen

    5 goals scored while the goalie was pulled…. 2nd time I’ve seen that this year (Bolts)

    Fully agree with Deee…. a perfect …. And I mean a perfect, hip check…,, should never have been called as a penalty

    Re high stick… I don’t think the non call was due to whistle being blown … they ruled it a “follow through”… which by the book precludes a penalty…. However, I thought that a player had to actually make contact with the puck to be considered a “follow-through”?

    Regardless…. Habs smartly turned Pens gafs into goals; Allen stood on his head

    Re Habs ownership and top management.., Yikes… a cluster F happening

    Roy checks boxes that seems to have been talked about …. Experience and Francaphone.

    Bobby Lou idea sounds good.

    Very interesting times fir the storied franchise

  6. President of Hockey Operations is a new position with the Canadiens, there is a VP Hockey Operations and Legal Affairs, John Sedgewick (he set up the Laval Rocket)

    If Gorton is being hired he probably would be replacing Geoff Molson regarding operations.

    I can see Mark Madden Jr and Mathieu Darche replacing Bergevin and Mellanby though both are employed (Anaheim and Tampa Bay)

    I don’t know what to make of Gorton, NYR fans here seem to have mixed opinions, being fired by Dolan isn’t a minus.

    Full disclosure I happen to like Marc Bergevin as GM.

    • Finally, some positive news about the Habs management. Whatever one’s views on Bergevin, there can be no doubt that a major change was needed. Here’s the to-do list now:
      1. Bring in Gorton as Pres./VP of Hockey Ops. He has a strong background and would be the right man to oversee hockey operations.
      2. Fire Bergevin immediately. Having him hang around the rest of the season like Banquo’s ghost will not help the team or him. Gorton would have the rest of the season to evaluate personnel.
      3. I like either Madden on Darche for GM. If either one can be brought in now, it would help. But that may have to wait for the offseason.
      4. Decisions on Timmins and Martin Lapointe would likely be made at seasons end.
      And I take great issue with those who insist that Molson has made a mess of the matter. This is the media’s regular method of feeling it their duty to find someone to criticize, and once one of them starts, the rest of them have to pile on. Molson is doing what he has to do. Changes are needed in management and he’s wisely going after the best available man to head up the operation. I liked Mellanby, but this situation cannot be cured by someone on the inside. New people must be brought in. It’s a business and Molson must do what it takes to get it going in the right direction. Alienating Bergevin and Mellanby means nothing – one is out and the other will soon be out. This is the perfect example of having to break eggs to make an omelet.

      • Couldn’t agree more, Howard. The implication is that Berg has a right to name his successor, or have influence as he leaves, which is preposterous.

        Is it Molson’s fault word got out that he was talking to Gorton? Why is this a big secret?

      • Great read Howard. This team needs fresh blood and a new vision. Hopefully time to dismantle this team and accumulate picks and prospects.
        On a positive note, looks like Ducharme has finally found a system that works – just have your goalie stand on his head and convince the other team to play with 6 skaters and no goalie- playoffs here we come.

    • Although I generally think Gorton did a good job in NY, I don’t give him any credit for drafting Laffy and Kakko. Those were the result of lottery luck and selecting the obvious players. And I believe that there were multiple players selected lower in each of those drafts that NY could not acquire by offering Laffy or Kakko for even up. One example is in Detroit. Does anyone think that Yzerman would trade Seider for Laffy, or Raymond for Kakko ? And there are others like Seider and Raymond that look better than L and K at this point, with the admitted small sample size.

    • I’d like him more if he was the GM of another team!

    • I hate that Montreal fired MB. Full disclosure; not because I like him but rather because he was worse than Benning and kept some of the media focus away from that.

      Hopefully a new GM will help with that just as I hope a new GM will help in Van but unfortunately change really needs to start at the top for both and there is nothing we can do about the ownership.

  7. Scores don’t necessarily show who out played who last night Vegas murdered the Oilers but the Oilers tender stood on his head. Bruin Ranger game was same way Boston should have been up huge out shot NY like 16-3 in first and we’re tied after one. Sometimes goaltending steals the show but usually doesn’t last in a best of 7 series.

    • Good point on the Bruins.Ranger goalie stood on his head.Stole the game.Which leads me to ask,can Bruins goalies do the same?

  8. Looks like Russia related insults are acceptable in the NHL but racial insults will get you national headlines along with a fine and possible suspension.

    Does that seem correct?

  9. What’s with all these $5000 fines – do they really accomplish anything? I’d prefer to see 1 game suspensions with escalating penalties for repeat offenders. You’ve gotta make it hurt the team to be effective and $5000 means nothing to players making millions.
    Question: is there something in the CBA that would prevent suspensions over monetary discipline?

    • Yes. Its all been negotiated. Not a chance on changing anything until the agreement has expired. Even after it expires, I wouldn’t imagine any players voting for a rule or guidelines that can penalize them further, be it in the pocketbook or as a traditional game(s) suspension.
      Parros catches a lot of flack, and rightfully so, but he has to operate within the language of the collective agreement as well.

      Here’s a far out guess for some future jobs.
      Parros gets the gm gig in Anaheim, Bergy gets the spot in Chicago, and Gorton + a qualified French speaking executive gets to share duties in Montrèal.
      Claude gets hired in Vancouver somewhere else. Cassidy the Habs coaching staff gets fired.

  10. The shoe dropped,

    Geoff Molson, Owner, President, and Chief Executive Officer of the Club de hockey Canadien, has announced that Marc Bergevin, Executive Vice President and General Manager, Trevor Timmins, Assistant General Manager, as well as Paul Wilson, Senior Vice President, Public Affairs and Communications, have been relieved of their respective functions, effective immediately.

    To assure the continuity of the day-to-day hockey operations during this process, Mr. Molson has retained the services of Jeff Gorton, who will serve as Executive Vice President, Hockey Operations.

    • An early Christmas present from Mr Molson to all Habs fans. Who says there is no Santa?

    • How long till Gorton signs Daniel Dore as scout? We sure could use him.