NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 9, 2022

by | Mar 9, 2022 | News, NHL | 29 comments

The Capitals’ Alex Ovechkin tied for third on the all-time scoring list, the Leafs’ Auston Matthews widens his lead in the Richard Trophy race, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin scored twice to tie Jaromir Jagr for third place on the all-time goal list (766) as his club held off the Calgary Flames 5-4. With 36 goals, Ovechkin sits fourth in this season’s goal-scoring race. The Capitals hold the second wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference with 71 points, sitting two behind the Boston Bruins. Flames forward Elias Lindholm also scored two goals as his club remains atop the Pacific Division with 75 points.

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin (NHL Images).

A hat trick by Auston Matthews powered the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 6-4 win over the Seattle Kraken. The Leafs blew a 3-1 lead and fell behind 4-3 before getting two goals from Matthews and one from Mitch Marner for the win. With 43 goals, Matthews holds a five-goal lead over the Edmonton Oilers’ Leon Draisaitl and the New York Rangers Chris Kreider. the Leafs (78 points) are two back of the second-place Tampa Bay Lightning in the Atlantic Division.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Matthews is just seven goals from becoming the first Leaf to reach the 50-goal plateau since Dave Andreychuk in 1993-94. With 74 points, he’s just five points behind Edmonton’s Connor McDavid in the race for the Art Ross Trophy.

Patrick Kane netted a career-high six points (one goal and five assists) as his Chicago Blackhawks thumped the Anaheim Ducks 8-3. Dylan Strome had a hat trick plus an assist while Alex DeBrincat had a goal and three assists. Anaheim goalie John Gibson got the hook after giving up five goals in 13 shots in the first period. With 63 points, the Ducks remain four points behind the Dallas Stars for the final Western Conference wild-card spot.

The Arizona Coyotes tallied seven or more goals for the second straight game in a 9-2 dubbing of the Detroit Red Wings. Fresh off a seven-point performance in his previous game, Coyotes center Nick Schmaltz tallied two goals and added two assists in this contest while teammates Jakob Chychrun, Clayton Keller and Nick Ritchie each had three-point nights. The Coyotes have won three straight games for the first time this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Coyotes winger Phil Kessel skated in the opening shift to keep his NHL Ironman streak alive at 956 games, then flew back to Arizona on a flight chartered by team owner Alex Meruelo to attend the birth of his child. Meanwhile, Red Wings forward Jakub Vrana scored in his season debut following a long recovery from shoulder surgery.

Florida Panthers winger Anthony Duclair tied his career-high of 23 goals to help his club down the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3. Aleksander Barkov collected two assists as the Panthers move into a tie with the Carolina Hurricanes with 83 points, though the Hurricanes sit atop the Eastern Conference with a game in hand. Sidney Crosby and Bryan Rust each had a goal and an assist as the Penguins sit in third place in the Metropolitan Division with 77 points.

The Colorado Avalanche (87 points) failed to widen their lead over the Hurricanes and Panthers in the overall standings after falling 5-3 to the New Jersey Devils, who overcame a 3-0 deficit for the win. Jesper Bratt collected three assists for the Devils. Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar extended his points streak to 13 games with a goal and an assist. Devils head coach Lindy Ruff moved into sixth place on the all-time wins list among NHL bench bosses with 776. He’s 12 wins behind Hall-of-Famer Al Arbour.

Winnipeg Jets center Mark Scheifele scored and set up three others to lead his club to a 7-4 upset of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Paul Stastny scored twice for the Jets, who had lost six of their last eight games. With 60 points, they’re seven points out of the final Western wild-card berth. The Lightning (80 points) remain three behind the Hurricanes and Panthers in the Eastern Conference.

The Minnesota Wild got two goals by Kevin Fiala and a three-point performance by Marcus Foligno to down the New York Rangers 5-2. Cam Talbot made 23 saves for the win as the Wild (69 points) moved within two points of the second-place St. Louis Blues in the Central Division. The Rangers (77 points) hold second place in the Metropolitan Division with a game in hand over the Penguins.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Wild winger Jordan Greenway collected an assist as he returned to the lineup after missing six games with an upper-body injury.

Speaking of the Blues, they suffered their fourth straight loss by falling 4-1 to the Ottawa Senators, who snapped a five-game losing skid. Tim Stutzle and Josh Norris led the way with a goal and two assists each while Brady Tkachuk scored his 19th goal of the season.

Two goals by Ryan Johansen and Roman Josi lifted the Nashville Predators over the Dallas Stars 2-1. John Klingberg tallied for the Stars to snap his 25-game goal-scoring drought. The Predators (68 points) moved one ahead of the Stars into the first Western wild-card spot.

Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Carter Hart made a career-high 47 saves to backstop his club to a 2-1 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights. Justin Braun and Oskar Lindblom were the goal scorers for the Flyers while Evgenii Dadonov replied for the Golden Knights, who sit in third place in the Pacific Division with 68 points.


THE SEATTLE TIMES: The Kraken signed forward Jared McCann to a five-year, $25 million contract extension. McCann, 25, is their leading scorer with 21 goals and 33 points and is the first player in franchise history to re-sign with the club.

SPORTSNET: Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Jake Muzzin returned to the ice yesterday by taking part in an optional skate. He’s been sidelined by a concussion and there’s still no timetable for his return to action.

ARIZONA SPORTS: Coyotes forward Antoine Roussel has been sidelined for six weeks with a lower-body injury.

TSN: The Columbus Blue Jackets signed forward Justin Danforth to a two-year, $1.95 million contract extension. Meanwhile, the Anaheim Ducks claimed defenseman Andrej Sustr off waivers from the Tampa Bay Lightning.


  1. This has been without question one of most boring seasons I’ve ever seen. No Trades really not that much interested in Ovey’s pursuit of Gretzky’s record I hope he doesn’t get it. Will not respond to Mr. Bruin.

  2. Nice move by Meruelo re Phil

    Great that AM keeps potting them and moving towards another RR award… but the Leafs are not playing 60 minutes….. not good…5 on 5 Krakken outscored Leafs. Take away the EN goal…. This game could have gone either way…. Soupy …. 867. Dubas, do not make a futures for a UFA big deal…. This club needs to look at their cup opportunity … which starts next year….I am having serious doubts Leafs could win one series vs the 3 SW US juggernaut franchises , let alone 3…. Then to face Avs

    Panthers…. The real deal… and Pens found that out last night… yes Jarry had 4 GAs…. But really only one he had any chance at…. But the speed and onslaught by Panthers is tremendous…. And Pens benefited by two accidental Panther’s own goals

    Pens have a fair chance against Rangers; are in tough against Canes, but have a fighting chance…. Panthers or Bolts…. I’d be lying if I said they are playing like they can beat them in a series.

    $5M for McC…. Steal. He’s their best player, and next year when his deal kicks in… there will be at least 2 Krakken making more than him. Having his best year ever…. On an 82 game pace approaching mid 30’s in goals; on a week team….I would think several teams would have made an offer sheet for more…. Other teams could have offered up to ~ $6.2 M per… and would give up only a 1st and a 3rd…. to me McC left $’s on the table

    What’s up with Yotes? 3 in a row….Smaltz 11 points in 2 games…. They are playing like…. Mmmmmm…. “see how good I can do…. Other teams please notice me and trade for me…. Get me outta here…. I don’t want to play in front of only 4,000 (5,000 max) fans for another 4 years; and no one on TV will get to see me play because the TV sight lines in that mini arena are awful”….. or “Houston…. take note on what we can do…. Make some calls…. Please”

  3. Duclair is having a decent season. Maybe there is something in the water in Ottawa.

    • He is. But he’s been notoriously streaky throughout his career. After 1g 6a 7pts for NYR in 2024-15 he was off to Arizona where he got every one excited with 20g 24a 44pts in 81gp the nexy season – then dropped to 5g 10a 15pts in 58gp in 2016-17. Then 9g 6a 15pts in 33gp in 2017-18 before going to Chicago where he finished that season with 3g 6a 8pts in 23gp. Then he was off to Columbus in 2018-19 where he had 11g 9a 20 pts in 53gp (Tortorella couldn’t stand him) before being shipped off to Ottawa where he finished with 8g 6a 14 pts in 21gp. In 2019-20 he had 23g 17a 40 pts in 66gp for Ottawa for which he wanted the Moon in contract negotiations – so he was sent to Florida where, with a super-charged line-up, he responded with a modest 10g 22a 32pts in 43gp last season.

      We’ll see if this trend continues.

      • Great points which can be used for a lot a skilled young players trying to find a fit. I don’t think those numbers he was putting up is something any player can do when he did it and the teams he was on.
        He is starting to look like he’s found or finding out how to use his skill sets for success. Another example is Mason which while undrafted and dogging it in the Leafs system showing flashes of what he could be is only starting for him now.

        But that’s the chatty right? He’s good now or was inconsistent then…the big question as with all good playing players is, how long can he keep it up? Is this him or is what’s in his past him?

  4. Came across a tweet this morning talking about the weakness the Bruins have on the LD … There’s Reilly who can’t play D in front of the goalie in the D zone and then there’s Matt Grzelcyk a very small LD who’s always hurt and when he does get to the playoffs is a huge target by opposing forwards … 54 playoffs games played in his career with a total of 14 pts and the offense is his strong point both players are on 3 year contracts … Bruins need to rework their D in the offseason … get bigger get tougher and actually play D

    • package grzelcyk along with debrusk and red light Ullmark and a no. one for chychrun if that’s not enough tell the coyotes to take a hike.

      • Make it a meaningful trade,not the one you put out there!Proposal Debrusk,Carlo,Studnicka,Vaakanian,Zboril for Chycrun and Schmaultz.

      • Ullmark is going no where. Try to follow along.

    • LD huge problem for Bruins.With Moore,Zboril,Vaakanian all out with Grezlyk,the Bruins had a smurf left to play against LA the other night in Jack Ahcan.Please find another D preferably LH as a no. 2 to play with Mcavoy.

      • I wonder if. Sweeney was going to claim Sustr if. Ducks did not. 6’5 LD on min contract. Guess we will never know now

      • Wonder if Grzelcyk is out with same shoulder injury as earlier. Seems some shoulder problems don’t go away without surgery and then out for a long while. Might be playing hurt, which is a problem for the B’s, as I agree he gets hit a lot in the playoffs. He and McAvoy are great together when he is healthy.

        Some LD options out their, but more the D first type vs puck mover. Lindholm would be my fav, but not likely IMO as they can’t afford him long term and ANA might just keep him. Probably 2nd tier type guy like De Haan and some scoring depth would be my guess at TDL and they keep their 1st.

        Unless Giroux is open to B’s?

    • Joe last season playoff is proof of that. Both Grizz and Reilly shied away from the physical play and coughed up the puck numerous time.

      It needs to addressed before the trade deadline

  5. Let’s have some fun and pretend the Avs are treated like the Leafs as per the majority of commentators on this site…OMG what a collapse last night by the Avs…their defense is a mess and their goal tending won’t get them through the first round…GM Sokic has destroyed this team with terrible contracts – Rantanen at 9.5 and I’m sure he’ll pay McKinnon the league max. Is Makar even a defenseman? More like a crazy rover if you ask me. This team will never win anything…unless they trade for a Matt Martin, Casey Csisikis and Chara….

    • sounds like jealousy…..LOL

      • JZ, Nah not jealous, just blowing off some steam with a bit of morning sarcasm…

    • Good one Wawman93… had me chuckling

      We (Leafs fans) are harsh on the buds…. No question

      That said…. Avs are cream of the crop and are due here and there to be beat badly

      Leafs are not cream of the crop… very good team; but built to do just well enough (in ATL ) to be in top 3 come playoffs, but not built well enough to get through any of Cars, Bolts, Canes, Avs…. and they have to take at least two of those in a series to win the cup

      Off season, if Dubas can do a relatively uncompromising re-jig of the roster (away from 1/2 cap on 4 fwds)…. Then Leafs have a shot at the cup in June ‘23

      Yes I’m a bitter old fart that’s waited 5 1/2 decades for another cup (just a fading memory sitting on my dad’s knee watching in ‘67) so I’m certainly jaded re Leafs

      I’d rather they just stay as is … do what they can in first round…. Re-tool (see above) come summer with a stronger back end and more grit to start 22-23…. That should give them a much better chance at the cup

      Leafs can score…. No ifs ands or buts…. But playoff hockey is grinding, 60 plus minutes oft, no letting down, defensive focused, and for 4 gruelling series over 8-10 weeks…. roster as is…. Not there yet IMHO

      • Pengy, what’s this about 5.5 decades? You’re a Penguins fan – you’re rolling in clover. I think you’re ready to add Colorado too. Enough with the Leaf whines.

      • Hi BC Leafs fan

        Been a Leafs fan since I can remember…. Probably since kindergarten (‘66)

        Been a Pens fan since Mario joined

        So I’ve enjoyed 6 cups ….. just might have been 7….. friggin Mr. Polyglycoated hair, Kerry Fraser…. Looks right at Gretsky’s stick as it cut Dougie’s face…. no call…. We all know what happened after that…. Not sure if Leafs could have beaten the Habs ….. but it would have been something to watch

    • Nice, now throw in a trade proposal that makes no sense.

    • Wawman93, if you followed the Avalanche at all, this has been a consistent problem for them since 2018? Last night’s collapse is just a microcosm of the larger picture IMHO: the Avalanche have poor puck management and they can usually outscore their mistakes because they’re so lethal on offense. The players are at fault, I would start sitting those that don’t get the message, even the superstars like McKinnon and Rantanen, who are extremely careless with the puck?. Throw in Burakosky, too. Girard terrible decision making. Until they get it, if they don’t like it too bad! This has been an Avalanche problem forever and is ignored by broadcaster’s who do the game on Altitude because they’re too busy being enamored by statistics: how many goals, who has the longest streak in Avs history, Kadri, Makar, etc. Nausiating to listen too when right in front of your eyes, it’s the same terrible puck management. I will agree with you on one thing, if they play like that in the playoffs, they won’t get far. GO AVS!!!!!!!!

  6. Vegas will make a deal soon for Weber’s contract so they can bring back Stone and Martinez. Otherwise VGK might fade out of contention for even a play-off spot or at least lose all ‘home field advantage’.

    • johnny z – see that very subject covered in the Rumors thread – could they be able to add Weber’s cap hit for even an instant before transferring it to the LTIR? I sure wasn’t aware of that stipulation when acquiring the contract in a trade.

  7. Matthews with the Hatty! Could of been a few more especially that quick passing play from marner where Matthews just missed it but I am Amazed Campbell never threw a hat. lol

    Speaking of throwing..Matthews with a big hit on Olesiak. Kinda blew me away but Auston is showing not only can he score in many different ways but now he is adding some crunch to hihs game. (HART TROPHY WORTHY WINNER)

    Would of been great to see Simmonds score one (hit that post) but a cool celebration for him nevertheless.

    Ov tried for a hatty but had to look up at the hockey Gods when he had a few chances on an open net. (one of his attempts though was totally greedy as it came back as an icing call) and got lucky when the Flames just about scored to tie it up. Washington needed a win (lift) and beating the flames in their backyard was a good lift for them I imagine.

    I now want to see NJ play Arizona…..maybe between them they can get the record for most goals scored in a game.

  8. In Matthews we trust. He is by far the most complete player in NHL. Shoe in for Hart, Selke and Rocket this season. He is having an amazing season. Too bad he has to continually play alongside absolutely horrific defense core the likes of Liiligren, Dermott, Muzzin. They need to replace these three guys for some BRUTE on the Blueline. Every goal that Campbell or Mrazek let’s in is because of Liiligren is doing merry go round or Dermott running around looking like a chicken without the head. Muzzin is sooooo slow and sooooo fragile. I really like the new d-man Lybushkin, he plays simple and nasty. We need three more like him and get rid of three ballerinas I mentioned above. Go Leafs Go

    • Bet $100 he no win selke. Bergeron will win. His metrics are over the moon better then anyones in history of the award quiet incredible based on his age etc

    • Here is the stats so far this year for Bergy

      Stat Bergeron NHL Rank
      Shot attempts for % 66.1 1st
      Shots on net for % 68.37 1st
      Scoring chance for % 67.14 1st
      High-danger attempts for % 68.98 1st
      Expected goals against 14.54 1st

      But then they have writers who should not have a vote like this guy.

      Bergeron helluva player but there are other people in NHL who check well, take face-offs and are solid offensively and https://t.co/9GpZZxpLcm Elias Lindholm in Calgary. https://t.co/yyHsOJKXsv— Jim Matheson (@jimmathesonnhl) February 28, 2022

      Shows he is uniformed or bias or stupid. Take your pick

      • No question Bergeron’s a fantastic two-way player and should win the Selke again.
        Matthews is getting better every year though; here’s hoping he and his team-mates can break through in the playoffs this year. Second line needs to chip in a bit more.

  9. Matthews is a generational talent. No doubt about that