NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 30, 2022

by | Jan 30, 2022 | News, NHL | 15 comments

Seven-goal performances by the Oilers and Leafs during Hockey Day in Canada, Jonathan Huberdeau takes over the scoring race, and Hockey Night in Canada pioneer Ralph Mellanby passes away. Details and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: Leon Draisaitl and Zach Hyman each scored twice as the Edmonton Oilers crushed the Montreal Canadiens 7-2. Evander Kane also scored in his debut with the Oilers (46 points), who have four straight wins and sit two points out of the final Western Conference wild-card spot.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Not a bad start for Kane with his new club in his first game of the season. Meanwhile, Draisaitl moved into second place in the NHL scoring race with 61 points.

Toronto Maple Leafs winger Michael Bunting collected a hat track as the Toronto Maple Leafs rolled to a 7-4 win over the Detroit Red Wings. Toronto tallied five unanswered goals in the third period with Bunting tallying two of them. With 57 points, the Leafs remain in third place in the Atlantic Division, seven points back of the second-place Tampa Bay Lightning.

Speaking of the Lightning, they dropped a 3-2 decision to the Vegas Golden Knights on a goal by Mark Stone in the seventh shootout round. The Bolts were down 2-0 but rallied on third-period goals by Ross Colton and Corey Perry. With 65 points, they sit two behind the first-overall Florida Panthers. The Golden Knights (55 points) remain one up on the Anaheim Ducks for first in the Pacific Division.

Florida Panthers winger Jonathan Huberdeau (NHL Images).

Jonathan Huberdeau took over the lead in the scoring race with a goal and two assists as the Panthers defeated the San Jose Sharks 5-4 on an overtime goal by Sam Bennett. Jonathan Dahlen tallied twice and Nick Bonino collected three assists for the Sharks, who sit one point out of the final Western wild-card berth with 47 points.

The Carolina Hurricanes (62 points) moved one point ahead of the Pittsburgh Penguins into first place in the Metropolitan Division by nipping the New Jersey Devils 2-1. Antti Raanta made 24 saves in his first game since Jan. 1 while teammates Jordan Martinook and Andrei Svechnikov scored. Jesper Boqvist replied for the Devils.

Calgary Flames goaltender Jacob Markstrom needed just 15 saves to extend his league-leading shutouts for this season to seven in a 1-0 win over the Vancouver Canucks. Johnny Gaudreau netted the winner in overtime while Vancouver netminder Thatcher Demko turned aside 31 shots. The Canucks picked up a point to sit four back of the Flames (48 points) for that final Western wild-card spot.

The Winnipeg Jets (43 points) picked up a big win by beating the St. Louis Blues 4-1 as they snapped a six-game losing skid to sit five points back of the Flames. Paul Stastny scored two goals while goalie Eric Comrie made 28 saves for the win. The Blues (57 points) sit one back of the second-place Nashville Predators in the Central Division.

Anaheim Ducks winger Troy Terry potted his 25th goal of the season and John Gibson stopped 44 shots in a 2-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators. Rickard Rakell also scored for Anaheim while Tyler Ennis replied for the Senators. With the win, the Ducks (54 points) move one point behind the Golden Knights in the Pacific Division.

An overtime goal by Scott Laughton lifted the Philadelphia Flyers over the Los Angeles Kings 4-3 to snap their 13-game losing skid. Flyers winger Cam Atkinson scored twice and collected an assist while Viktor Arvidsson tallied two goals for the Kings, who sit three points back of the Ducks in third place in the Pacific.

Buffalo Sabres goaltender Craig Anderson made 27 saves in his first game since Nov. 2 to backstop his club over the Arizona Coyotes 3-1. Alex Tuch and Peyton Krebs each had a goal and an assist for the Sabres.


TSN: Canadiens goaltender Carey Price skated in full equipment for 10 minutes during practice yesterday but didn’t face any shots. He’s still recuperating from offseason knee surgery. Canadiens goalie coach Eric Raymond said Price is looking forward to returning to action later this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: No word on when Price will be back. His return won’t save the Canadiens’ dreadful season.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens forward Paul Byron is expected to make his season debut tonight against the Columbus Blue Jackets following offseason hip surgery.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canadiens have missed his two-way experience and leadership this season.

SPORTSNET: Canadiens defenseman David Savard will miss the next eight weeks with an injured right ankle.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s been that kind of season for the Habs. Injuries have decimated their lineup and contributed to their woeful performance.

SPORTSNET: Ottawa Senators center Josh Norris is likely sidelined by a shoulder injury until after the All-Star break.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a tough week for the Senators, losing their leading goal scorer in Norris (18 goals) and their points leader in Drake Batherson (34 points) earlier in the week.

NBC SPORTS CHICAGO: Blackhawks center Kirby Dach removed social media from his phone back in December to get away from the noise and pressure he felt from fans. “Obviously you miss out on news, what’s going on and stuff cause that’s how you get it nowadays but I’ve enjoyed it. I like the break from it,” said Dach.

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Stars owner Tom Gaglardi admitted he’s felt frustrated by his club’s inconsistent performance this season. Nevertheless, he’s preaching patience over the second half of the season and prefers not to make midseason changes. He also remains confident that his coaching staff and management can find a way into the playoffs.

TSN: Canadian sports broadcasting pioneer Ralph Mellanby has passed away at age 87. He was the creative force behind CBC’s Hockey Night in Canada as its executive producer from 1966 to 1987. He introduced new camera angles in arenas, slow-motion replays, telestrators and on-air graphics to Hockey Night broadcasts.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Mellanby helped make Hockey Night in Canada a sports institution in Canada. My condolences to his family, friends and broadcast colleagues.


  1. E Kane is a good hockey player but the baggage stinks he sure could’ve helped the Bruins in the 2nd half of season , exactly the type of players they need along with a 2nd line center and a SAH Dman with size and grit ….I have confidence in Sweeney/Neely

    • You may be the only Bruin fan on here that has any type of confidence in Sweeney/Neely … as an outsider I hope the Bruins keep both … that would make another team not to worry about …

      • Yep I’m a huge Sweeney/Neely fan …

    • Boston needs more draft homeruns like they did with some of their core. Shows how a few bad drafts can really hurt an organization

  2. Yep. Drafts are a crap-shoot at the best of times – the McDavids and Matthews were “can’t misses” that didn’t – the Yakopovs were “can’t mosses” that did.

    At the time of their selections those now deemed “lousy picks” by Boston were highly regarded – it just turned out to be a sequence of picks that all turned out less than initially regarded. And their system has been paying the price since.

    Happens. The fact the high-horses in here can lean heavily on hindsight to sound knowledgeable is a bi-product of sites such as this.

    • but just imagine the Bruins without finding Marchant in the 3rd or how many teams passed on Pasta who would top 3 in a redraft.

      DO NOT look at the 3 players choose after the Bruins 3 straight 1st round picks in 2015….
      Scouting is not an easy game

      • Very true. Of course, it’s always easier for some to sound knowledgeable by picking on bad choices after the fact. Yakopoz is a classic example of that. As is Daigle. And quite a few others that ultimately fizzled in relation to where they were picked.

    • It takes less than 10 minutes of reviewing past entry drafts to see how many first rounders don’t make an impact in the NHL. So easy I wonder why it’s even a topic. For example, 11 of the 2018 draft picks aren’t currently in the NHL. For 2017 it is 10. Of the rest some are listed as being in the NHL but are best described as fringe or taxi squad.

      As Ron Francis recently noted, it is exceedingly difficult to project the development of kids who are 18 years old.

      • That should be “first round” draft picks. Doh!

  3. I discovered HNIC in 1966 watching from Buffalo with my “rabbit ears antenna”. Wednesday & Saturday nights with Ward Cornell, Bob Goldham, Jack Dennett, Brian McFarland, et al. we’re the highlights of the week for me and my father. Plus the Hamilton Red Wings games on CHCH gave me a chance to preview and evaluate future NHLers. Great to be growing up in those days. RIP Ralph Mellanby.

  4. George, here’s one for the experts who post on Spectors Hockey – will Shane Wright, the consensus first overall pick this year meet the expectations for him?
    He plays for Kingston in the OHL, was granted special status to drafted early and his stats so far compare favorably to those of another special status junior, John Tavares.
    What say you, armchair experts? Hit or miss?

    • Great question BCLeafFan. Early in this season the “expert” opinion on Wright appeared to wane a but, with some offering the suggestion that he “doesn’t seem to be the straw that stirs the drink” in Kingston – and other similar gems. Since then, and even as he and his team began to pick up the pace to the point where has again become the consensus # 1, there are still some pointing to his “ennhh” performances on his 2 games at the World Juniors before their cancellation, and are so touting Lambert.

      The up and down assessment seems to flow at the same pace as the up and down openings/closures due to Covid, so it must be damned difficult for scouts to come to any firm conclusions.

      This is one of those drafts where, whoever gets the 1st pick is going to find it very difficult to pass on him – especially if it’s Montreal, the draft being right in their own back yard.

      Ultimately, it’s going to be very interesting down the line to see who came out with the best player among the first 10 or 12 chosen.

      • Good post, George.

    • I will say hit BCLeafFan.
      Not generational but a solid 1st line C who plays well defensively as well.
      Button said in the mold of Bergeron, which sound good to me. Not everybody is a Craig Button fan, but he still spends a whack of time in rinks all over NA watching these kids and has been doing it forever.
      So go with his take.

      • Ray I agree . He will not be a star but a great 200 foot player . If and big If the Habs can have both him and Suzuki that will look like a great for the Habs 1 2 punch. Need the balls to fall the WRIGHT way lol