NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 1, 2022

by | Mar 1, 2022 | News, NHL | 18 comments

Recaps of Monday’s action, the three stars of the week are revealed, the league suspends business and social media ties with Russia and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: The Boston Bruins got a 34-save shutout from Jeremy Swayman and a natural hat trick from Jake DeBrusk to crush the Los Angeles Kings 7-0. DeBrusk finished the night with four points while linemate Patrice Bergeron had three points and Erik Haula potted two goals.

Boston Bruins winger Jake DeBrusk (NHL Images).

With 68 points, the Bruins opened a three-point lead over the Washington Capitals for the first wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference. The Kings (65 points) remain three behind the first-place Calgary Flames in the Pacific Division and three ahead of the third-place Vegas Golden Knights.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: DeBrusk has been red-hot since being moved onto the Bruins’ top line alongside Bergeron and Brad Marchand. He has seven goals and nine points in five games since that move.

DeBrusk requested a trade three months ago. His recent performance could improve his trade value but could also make him worthwhile for the Bruins to retain. He’s a restricted free agent this summer so they aren’t under pressure to move him before the March 21 trade deadline.

Speaking of the Capitals (65 points), they dropped their third straight game in a 5-3 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs. The Leafs blew a 3-1 lead but recovered on late goals by Rasmus Sandin and Pierre Engvall. Sandin, Mitch Marner, John Tavares and Justin Holl all finished the night with two points each. Tom Wilson scored twice for the Capitals, who hold the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot with a 10-point lead over the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The Leafs, meanwhile, are tied with the second-place Tampa Bay Lightning in the Atlantic Division with 74 points. However, the Bolts hold two games in hand.

New Jersey Devils center Jack Hughes had a goal and an assist to pick up his third straight win over brother Quinn Hughes in a 7-2 drubbing of the Vancouver Canucks. Jack was among seven Devils to collect two points on the night. Goaltender Nico Daws got the win with a 36-save performance. Canucks netminder Jaroslav Halak got the hook after giving up six goals on 14 shots.

With 58 points, the Canucks remain three points out of the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference.


NHL.COM: The league announced yesterday it was suspending its business and social media ties with Russia. It is also discontinuing any consideration of Russia as a location for any future competitions involving the NHL. The move comes in response to that country’s invasion of Ukraine.

SPORTSNET: The International Ice Hockey Federation has suspended Russia and Belarus from international competition until further notice. It has also pulled the 2023 World Junior Championship out of Russia.

TSN: Darren Dreger reports NHL agent Dan Milstein has raised concerns about threats to his Russian clients to the NHL and NHL clubs with Russian players. He’s asking for extra security for those players in North America.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is having a ripple effect throughout the sports world. It’s also prompted some people to call upon the league to suspend Russian players on NHL contracts but there’s no indication that’s going to happen. That move would be strongly contested by the NHLPA.

DAILY FACEOFF: Frank Seravalli reports sources said the Chicago Blackhawks will name interim general manager Kyle Davidson as their full-time GM.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blackhawks are getting trolled a bit on social media for making a grand production of their search for a new GM only to remove the interim label from Davidson. That aside, Davidson could prove a worthwhile hire after working his way up the front-office ranks of the Blackhawks over the past decade.

Davidson’s yet to make a major move trade-wise but got positive reviews for replacing Jeremy Colliton as head coach in November with Derek King. Given the Blackhawks’ improvement under King, he could also be back behind the bench next season on a permanent basis.

The Toronto Maple Leafs’ Auston Matthews, Vancouver Canucks J.T. Miller, and Tampa Bay Lightning’s Steven Stamkos are the centers of attention as the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Feb. 27.

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner is expected to start Tuesday’s game against the San Jose Sharks. He’s been sidelined since the All-Star break with an upper-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Lehner is said to be suffering a shoulder injury that will require offseason treatment. His absence sparked speculation the Golden Knights could be in the market for a goaltender.

OILERS NATION: The Edmonton Oilers placed defenseman Kris Russell on long-term injury reserve.


  1. Holy Jumpin Kyle -Bruin Flash Batman
    The cat woman might of put a “spell” on him Robin
    R They showcasing him on the number 1 line , or has he indeed turn the corner
    Bruins have a legitimate 1st string goaltender !
    L-0-0 -K more than fine to me

    SOP is soul searching for a lottery pick , in a 3 way deal to engage the Leafs in a Nylander adventure , for their second line Center

    Bruins will be ready to make some noise !

    • Good lord….Belarus had a legitimate shot this year !

      • Lol

    • Holy bat utility belt. I can’t find the decipher button for SOP?? Please reveal in the next episode.

  2. Now the catch 22 of situations like the bruins comes to play. Bulked up debrusks value but is he now too valuable to trade?

    • Exactamundo

    • Keep him and leave him on the top line. He’s a great fit on the off wing. His speed is lethal, and the boys can cover up for his defensive shortcomings.
      To be honest he’s gotten a lot better at that as well.

    • I don’t think it’s a catch 22 at all. DeBrusk has been playing well on 3rd line, lines get juggled due to Marchand suspension and Bergeron injury and the B’s found some chemistry with other line combos. Frederic, Coyle & Smith in particular, that they wanted to keep together.
      DeBrusk gets some games with Bergy with Marchand still suspended and it worked, and is still working with Marchand back.
      Pasta, Haula nd Hall has also consistently produced, but they did that a while ago.

      So not a catch 22, but great news for the B’s. Keep rolling with it until you are forced to change it.

      If he still wants a trade he has proven, again, he can score goals when playing in the top 6. Good thing and his QA looks reasonable.

      Fail to see the downside.

  3. ATL tightening up

    I realize the “position” Bruins have been “associated” with id WC and so many points above Caps

    Bruins are also only 6 points behind Leafs (same number of gams played) and there are two H2H games yet to be played… two Bruins wins in Reg…Difference then only 2 points

    And…. Swayman is outplaying either of Leafs tenders

    So…. Leafs…, good to have aspirations on moving up against Bolts and Panthers…. Just keep an eye n the rearview mirror

    JT had a very good game last night…. No goals but he was seriiusly an influence and had two helpers

    Wilson with only two questionable hits AND 2 goals…. check the sky for flying pigs

    Re DeBrusk…. I’m guessing he’d like to stay

    …. and Bruins have more Cap flex than Leafs …. so not good (from a Leafs perspective)

    Glad to see… “ league announced yesterday it was suspending its business and social media ties with Russia. It is also discontinuing any consideration of Russia as a location for any future competitions involving the NHL”

  4. Swayman is real deal a shot at the Calder Jake still needs to play with grit before I hope he stays always could skate and shoot. Boston beat a good team on the road who had won 5 straight wonder where Rick is probably want to trade Swayman for Fleury or McAvoy for Chychrun or something like that Bruins stay the course.

    • He is still wondering what else he can trash on the bruins. And coming up empty

  5. Well, the NHL has kept us waiting for a Toronto – Boston game, one in November and then, oh yeah, March 29…… when did the season start and are they really in the same division?

  6. Put the heat on the NHLPA to make the wrong decision…. Sure there are players that are probably against invading Ukraine but there’s also a lot of pro Putin players too

    • Hi Joe, I don’t think it is always as simple as we folks in free and stable democracies like to make it.

      I suggest the reading the article Chrisms posted a link to above.

      Explains the situation with NHL players much better than I could.

  7. The Bruins have their #1 goalie in Sway but they also have a 5 million per backup goalie who can’t be traded unless he’s willing to go

    • Won’t be issue as Swayman still on entry deal when new deal starts. Then a little more thorny. But his NMC. Changes to to allow trade

  8. “… Leafs’ Auston Matthews, Vancouver Canucks J.T. Miller, and Tampa Bay Lightning’s Steven Stamkos are the centers of attention as the NHL’s three stars…”

    Nice, good fun writing there.