NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – December 1, 2021

by | Dec 1, 2021 | News, NHL | 13 comments

Filip Forsberg enjoys a four-goal performance, the Panthers and Blues turn deficits into victories, the Devils re-sign Jack Hughes, Rod Brind’Amour and Brendan Lemieux fined, and much more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: Filip Forsberg scored four goals as the Nashville Predators thumped the Columbus Blue Jackets 6-0. Forsberg also reached his 400th career point in this contest. Juuse Saros made 27 saves for the shutout while Mikael Granlund collected four assists.

Nashville Predators winger Filip Forsberg (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Forsberg now has 10 goals and 15 points in just 13 games. Granlund, meanwhile, has 25 points in just 22 games. He had a combined 57 points over the last two seasons but should exceed that total this season at his current rate of production.

Four unanswered third-period goals lifted the Florida Panthers to a 5-4 victory over the Washington Capitals. Sam Reinhart buried the winner with just 15 seconds remaining in regulation. Jonathan Huberdeau and Aaron Ekblad each collected three assists for the Panthers.

Ryan O’Reilly scored the only goal in a shootout as the St. Louis Blues overcame a 3-0 deficit to drop the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-3. O’Reilly also scored in regulation while Jordan Binnington settled down from a shaky first period to make 30 saves for the win. Lightning captain Steven Stamkos missed the game to attend the birth of his second child while Erik Cernak returned to the Bolts lineup after missing eight games with an upper-body injury.

Dallas Stars forward Roope Hintz tallied a hat trick as his club downed the Carolina Hurricanes 4-1. Joe Pavelski also scored for the Stars and collected two assists while Braden Holtby picked up the win with a 39-save performance. Earlier in the day, the NHL fined Hurricanes head coach Rod Brind’Amour $25,000.00 for inappropriate conduct during Sunday’s game against the Capitals. Brind’Amour yelled at the referees late in the game over a slashing call against Sebastian Aho that gave the Capitals a 5-on-3 power play.

Shootout goals by Trevor Zegras and Kevin Shattenkirk lifted the Anaheim Ducks over the Los Angeles Kings 5-4. The Kings rallied back from a 4-1 deficit in the third to tie the game. Kings defenseman Drew Doughty returned to the lineup for the first time since suffering a knee injury on Oct. 22. The Kings also played without winger Brendan Lemieux, who was suspended five games for biting Ottawa Senators captain Brady Tkachuk on Saturday.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: In the “Apple Doesn’t Fall Far From The Tree Department”, Brendan and his father Claude Lemieux hold the dubious honor of being the first father/son duo in NHL history to be suspended for biting opponents during their respective careers.

The Detroit Red Wings got a 41-save performance from Alex Nedeljkovic as they nipped the Boston Bruins 2-1. Marc Staal broke a 1-1 tie in the third period. The Bruins were playing without Brad Marchand (three-game suspension) and head coach Bruce Cassidy after he was placed in COVID protocol yesterday.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Speaking of COVID protocols, the NHL sent a memo to its 32 teams yesterday outlining a series of new measures designed to curb the spread of the coronavirus. Those steps include canceling team Christmas parties, charity events and autograph sessions.

A 5-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes moved the Minnesota Wild into a tie with the Calgary Flames for first place in the Western Conference standings. Jordan Greenway had a goal and two assists while Kirill Kaprizov had a goal and an assist. Clayton Keller scored and set up another for the Coyotes.

Timo Meier scored twice and James Reimer kicked out 32 shots as the San Jose Sharks beat the New Jersey Devils 5-2. Devils center Jack Hughes returned to the lineup after missing 17 games with a dislocated shoulder. Earlier in the day, the Devils announced Hughes signed an eight-year, $64-million contract extension.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Devils are making a major investment in the 20-year-old Hughes after just 120 games and 55 points since 2019-20. He’s shown considerable potential since last season but will face a lot of pressure to meet the expectations that come with this contract. If he does, this could turn into a worthwhile deal for one of their core players.


THE SCORE: Evander Kane downplayed reports from earlier this summer claiming his San Jose Sharks teammates were frustrated by his behavior and didn’t want him back on the team this season. He said his end-of-season interview with management was positive, singling out how well he worked with the younger players and praising his performance. Kane cleared waivers Monday and reported to the AHL’s San Jose Barracudas, where he took part in his first practice with the team on Tuesday.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Meanwhile, there were reports during the offseason claiming the Sharks attempted to trade Kane earlier in the summer. They’re reportedly trying to do so again. Draw your own conclusions, folks.

CBC SPORTS: Quebec Remparts general manager and coach Patrick Roy has expressed interest in the Montreal Canadiens’ vacant general manager position. “Since 1993, this club has been running in circles,” said the Canadiens Hall-of-Famer. “What do they have to lose by giving me a chance, and seeing what I can do with this club?”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The issue would be whether the temperamental Roy could work well with Jeff Gorton, the Canadiens’ new executive VP of hockey operations. That might not be possible given his departure from the Colorado Avalanche in 2016 over a disagreement regarding the direction of that club. The last thing the Habs will want is their next GM butting heads with Gorton and turning their disagreements into a media circus.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers placed defenseman Cody Ceci in COVID protocol yesterday. The club also canceled Tuesday’s practice and order two rounds of tests.

TSN: Ottawa Senators center Shane Pinto underwent season-ending shoulder surgery. They also traded minor leaguer Kole Sherwood to the Nashville Predators for future considerations.


  1. Briere will be Habs GM. There’s no way Gorton would take that job and hire a guy that’ll want control (and credit) for all decisions.

    • Agreed Slick. Like it or not, Gorton is the GM of the Canadiens, regardless of his title and finally Molson has got it right by hiring the best man currently available for the job. Whom ever they hire will be someone who is inexperienced and ok with not having the final decision on any personnel issues. Clearly that person is NOT Patrick Roy. It’s still a great opportunity for someone who is willing to put in his time and grow into the position but for now they will be GM in name only.

      • Hi Slick & HM67

        Agree… Gorton in control calling the shots

        Not 100% convinced it’s going to be Briere

        Fairly confident that it won’t be Roy

        I think Bobby Lou is bilingual right?

        For Habs fans…. Just hope and pray its not Maguire

        Too bad Kevin Weekes isn’t bilingual… he’s been talked about several times over the last couple of years re consideration for a GM position

        Darche has had a fantastic two years of experience under BrisBoise watching him work deals with Lightening

      • Habman67–Here’s a far-fetched thought inspired by your description of the next GM’s desirable characteristics: Would Guy Boucher be someone who might be considered to possess those characteristics?

        The Canadiens must think well of him, since (as Spector reported) he was thought to be the favorite to assume the vacant head coach position last season.

        Though he is inexperienced as a GM, he is well educated and known to be a very smart man.

        He regularly appears on a sports radio show, On Jase, which shows he is a good communicator with a continued interest in hockey.

        I suppose that, to get back into the NHL, he would be submissive to Gorton while learning the job.

        His communication skills would make him useful as an intermediary between Gorton and the fans.

      • Hi Francis S. I’ll just say this – I am happy Molson picked the best candidate out there to be the “GM” of the Canadiens. Sure, Boucher from your description, sounds like a good candidate but from my perspective it really doesn’t matter as I know that during the first few years Gorton will be the one calling the shots. But how about this wrinkle. What if Briere, Darche, Boucher etc etc all turn down the position because they won’t have the power to do as they please- could you imagine the s%^$ show in Montreal if the press can’t communicate with Gorton!!!

  2. Sweeney’s last season with the b’s. If the bruins ever hope to make the playoffs now, Sweeney needs to board a plane to Czechoslovakia then get down on his hands and knees & beg Krecji to come back.
    That was step #1

    Step #2 trade Foligno and Moore to the coyotes for a pack of cotton swaps.

    Get Rask back in the fold ASAP. Ullmark might be okay for backup that about it for this dud.

    Get a GOOD ( not another Forbort!?!) D

    Without those pieces it’s the end of line Baby.

    • Hey Rick, I just heard Boston is about to announce a 10 year deal to keep Sweeney for the rebuild !

  3. Lyle…. catching the undertones of your comments on the Jack Hughes contract. While I have only seen bits and pieces of NJD games, plus highlights, I thought contracts that large were saved for players that have a “commanding ice presence”. Sure, he has had flashes of strong play, but is he a difference maker out there? Devils fans (or anyone who watches their games with some frequency) chime in here. Optics on this are a GM desperately trying to have a marque player who, right now, has only shown the potential to be that guy.

  4. Gorton will probably bring his Quebec scout, Daniel Doré to the Habs.

    He was his scout in Boston and he took him to the NYR. Whether correctly or not Trevor Timmins was seen as not drafting out of the Q.

    Briere wasn’t able to handle the pressure of Montreal as a player and only signed with the Habs when he was done and there were no expectations.

    As a successful businessman who has invested heavily in rebuilding Hockey in Quebec I don’t see him hiring a figurehead.

    I expect some combination of Martin Madden Jr, Mathieu Darche, Joel Bouchard, Caroline Ouellette and Danielle Goyette.

    This type of group brings ability, experience, diversity to the team.

    • I agree with your potential picks to fill the “GM” position….my concern or question is, how much of a role does Molson have? What will that dynamic be?
      Will it be Molson making the final hockey decisions or will he be the final say by holding the purse strings? I feel I can confidently say some non hockey owners control or have a budget and its up to management to work and do the best they can with it; whereas, an example of a non hockey owner doing more is like what we saw in Toronto for decades (Ballard and the OTPP) and currently reported with Buffalo? I’m not convinced he gonna be hands off and that’s gonna suck if so.

    • Geoff Molson has been a “good” owner, an open pocketbook letting his GM make the hockey decisions..

      I think Molson decided to make a clean cut and reorganise in time for entry draft, UFA and end of year trades.

      I think Gorton is a placeholder for now with a mandate to put an executive together that make the final hockey operation decisions.

      He was asked a few times about the future of Coach Ducharme and his reply was its a hockey operation decision for Gorton and the future GM not him.

      He was careful in his choice of words.

  5. last night game was bad! Bergeron gets crosschecked from behind into the boards, and only Pastrnak tried to do something.

    This team has zero toughness outside Marchand.

    I was disgusted to watch.

    Evander Kane would be a welcoming addition to the top 6.

    Please trade Matt Grzelcyk, I see no value in him and don’t understand how other do.

  6. I like Hughes, not at 8 million. Teams are going crazy with paying based on potential. The contracts being handed out are insane, especially for players that have yet to prove they are anywhere near earning it. Since when was 30 points worth 8 million. Man I thought some of these contracts going to these “ franchised d man were bad, let alone young inexperienced centres with less points who is close to getting labeled injury prone. Do gms feel they have too much cap space and need to spend it? Bridge it in these situations. Nail yakupov had similar numbers.I know that’s an extreme comparison but man I’m all honesty even 6 seems like too much let alone 8 for 8 years.