NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 10, 2022

by | Apr 10, 2022 | News, NHL | 32 comments

The Maple Leafs and Rangers clinch playoff berths, Auston Matthews, Chris Kreider and Alex Ovechkin each approach significant scoring milestones, the Avalanche tie a franchise record, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Auston Matthews scored twice as the Toronto Maple Leafs clinched a playoff berth by holding off the Montreal Canadiens 3-2. Matthews reached 58 goals on the season, becoming the ninth player in league history to score 50 goals in a 50-game period. The Leafs sit in second place in the Atlantic Division with 100 points. Montreal defenseman Jeff Petry returned to action after missing seven games with a lower-body injury. However, Canadiens goaltender Jake Allen left the game in the first period with a lower-body injury.

Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Matthews is two goals away from becoming the NHL’s first 60-goal scorer since the Tampa Bay Lightning’s Steven Stamkos reached that mark in 2011-12. Meanwhile, Allen’s injury is not expected to hasten the timeline for Carey Price’s return to the Canadiens’ net. Earlier in the day, the club announced winger Jonathan Drouin underwent season-ending wrist surgery on Friday.

The New York Rangers also clinched a postseason berth with a 5-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators. Chris Kreider tallied two goals to reach 49 on the season while Artemi Panarin had a goal and two assists. With 100 points, the Rangers are tied with the Carolina Hurricanes but the latter holds first place in the Metropolitan Division with a game in hand.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kreider sits third in the goal-scoring race and is poised to become the third player to reach the 50-goal plateau this season. He’s also five away from tying Jaromir Jagr for the single-season franchise record of 54 goals.

Three unanswered third-period goals lifted the Washington Capitals over the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-3, handing the latter their fourth straight loss. Alex Ovechkin scored his 44th goal of the season while Tom Wilson and John Carlson each collected two points for the Capitals, who hold the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot with 88 points. Pittsburgh, meanwhile, sits just four points ahead of the Capitals for third place in the Metro Division. Penguins winger Jason Zucker returned to the lineup after missing three games with a core-muscle injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ovechkin is tied with Gordie Howe for the second-most goals scored in a season by a player 36-or-old. He’s four behind record-holder Teemu Selanne. The Capitals captain also needs six more goals to tie Wayne Gretzky and Mike Bossy for the most 50-goal seasons (nine) in a career.

Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon scored the tying goal and the only goal in the shootout in a 2-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers. Darcy Kuemper turned in a 49-save performance as Colorado tied a franchise single-season record with 52 wins. The Avalanche sits two points ahead of the Florida Panthers for first in the overall standings with 110 points. With 90 points, the Oilers hold a four-point lead over the Los Angeles Kings for second place in the Pacific Division.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Avalanche defenseman Samuel Girard returned to action after missing 13 games with a lower-body injury.

Speaking of the Panthers, they picked up their seventh straight victory by dropping the Nashville Predators 4-1. Jonathan Huberdeau scored to extend his points streak to 11 games while Spencer Knight got the win by stopping 24 shots. The Predators hold the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference with 86 points.

Calgary Flames defenseman Noah Hanifin collected assists on each of his club’s goals on route to a 4-1 victory over the Seattle Kraken. With 97 points, the Flames are seven points up on the Oilers for first place in the Pacific Division.

The St. Louis Blues took over sole possession of second place in the Central Division with 94 points as they thumped the New York Islanders 6-1. Justin Faulk scored two goals and collected an assist as his club extended its points streak to eight games. Vladimir Tarasenko and Robert Thomas each had a goal and an assist. The Islanders were playing without Casey Cizikas, who served a one-game suspension for boarding Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Brendan Smith on Friday.

New Jersey Devils captain Nico Hischier had a goal and an assist to lead his club to a 3-1 win over the Dallas Stars. The loss leaves the Stars two points behind the Predators and clinging to the final Western Conference wild-card berth with 84 points.

Max Pacioretty scored in his return to the Vegas Golden Knights lineup as they crushed the Arizona Coyotes 6-1. Pacioretty had missed 12 games with an undisclosed ailment. Brayden McNabb had a goal and two assists while Robin Lehner turned aside 29 shots. The Golden Knights are tied with the Stars but the latter has two games in hand.

The Vancouver Canucks remain alive in the chase for the final Western wild-card berth by doubling up the San Jose Sharks 4-2. Thatcher Demko stopped 35 shots while Alex Chiasson had a goal and an assist for the Canucks, who are four points behind the Stars and Golden Knights.

A hat trick by Jack Roslovic, including the winner in overtime, powered the Columbus Blue Jackets to a 5-4 win over the Detroit Red Wings, handing the latter their eighth defeat in their last nine contests. Jakub Vrana tallied twice for the Wings.

Anaheim Ducks center Trevor Zegras scored two goals to beat the Philadelphia Flyers 5-3. Flyers forward Joel Farabee missed this game as he’s suffering from the flu.


  1. 3 of the best natural goal scores in nhl history, Ovey, Bossy and Matthews. Austin’s got the gift. Best Players of all time In order Orr no challenge followed by Gretzky, & Mario

    • Gumball. I concur with your top 3 players of all time

    • Hi Mr. Gumball

      Concur…. GOAT in order…. Orr, Gretzky, Lemieux

      Bossy by far greatest natural goal scorer of all time…. 9 straight 50 goal seasons (starting with his rookie season)…. Forced to retire waaaay too young (back)…. If his back didn’t give out…. I have no doubt he would have had at least 12 straight 50 goal campaigns…. And that would have had him in the 740’ish goal range (@33) …. Finishing healthy and playing to 38 (age Gretzky retired and what Ovi will be next year) would have had Bossy at well North of 900 Gs

      Note Bossy only ever had 15 EN goals….Ovi has more than 1/2 of that alone (8) just this season (in only 69 games)

      • #99 is the Greatest player of all time ..There is No Question There

        When the Next Best NHL Supper Star is 1,200 points behind Wayne Gretzky …⁉️

        Fans go Crazy when A SUPPER STAR Hits 1,000 points nowadays …..👍🍁🇺🇸

    • Wayne Gretzky with a 92, 87, 73, 71 and 62 goal season isn’t in your top 3 of natural goal scorer of all time; why?

      Is your definition a one-timer shot? Quick release?

      • Hi Caper

        My choice for greatest “pure” goal scorers of all time…

        Bossy, Lemieux, Bure (not large raw numbers relative to others, but boy could he score) ; *Jagr; **The Golden Jet; ***The Golden Brett; Ovi; ****Gretsky

        *4 prime age seasons in KHL and Czech Leagua …. If in NHL for those years….He goes North of 900

        **Also don’t forget The Golden Jet…. 600 + goals (in much lower scoring era) then jumping ship to WHA (after just turning 33)… where he had about 235 goals in his first 295 games

        ***One of only Five 700 + goal scorers with more G’s than A’s

        **** I still see him more as an overall great player with fantastic vision, and more a “passer/set up guy” than pure goal scorer (remember… nigh 2,000 assists to go with close to 900 Goals)

        AM too early in his career to get ranked up there…. But if he keeps up as trending and plays to mid 30’s…. Top 3 “pure” goal scorers of all time is certainly a fair bet

      • Good point Caper. To me it is kinda like golf, it ain’t how, it’s how many.
        Sometimes I think we attach the “pure” tag to the guys who don’t get many assists.

        Perhaps best shooters in the game is a more apt description.

        Bossy did score the most goals per games played I think, so that is a compelling argument (Lemieux is 2nd). Gretz has the most overall, either of those 2 IMO.

    • Hi Gumby…What you hear from Pokey lately? If Swayman’s in goal win for the b’s

      • Ullmark gets start again. Bruins sticking with whomever is playing better and right now that would be Ullmark Swayman will get his chance again to take it back before playoffs start

    • You guys are all forgetting three of the greatest goal scorers in history. Phil Esposito, maybe the greatest. Guy Lafleur. And, of course, the first superstar goal scorer – The Rocket.

      • Yes I had forgotten them… but I still say Bossy, Lemieux 1 & 2 all time “pure” goal scorers

        TheRocket was before my time (my excuse for not coming up with him on my list)….. but forgetting Espo and Lafleur…. Shame on me

        If and when one of today’s NHLers gets 4 goals in 4 different ways (which is not close to 5 different ways) in the same game…. Then we can discuss their names up with Mario (5 goals 5 different ways) and Bossy (9 straight 50 G seasons, from rookie year on, streak only ended by career ending back issues)

      • They are all real good. But as good as the other 3 already mentioned

  2. Congrats to Matthew’s, can he now do 60 in 60 games?

    Has 51 in 50

    Is Chris Kreider having the quietest 50-goal season of all time? Third in the league in goals, one goal away from 50.
    I hear more about Jason Zucker and Bunting than I do about Kreider.

    • Chris Kreider playing that Anson Carter and Jonathon Cheechoo game

    • Bang on Caper

      As far as “pure” goal scorer this year….CK is tops….give him the same number of shots on net that AM has had this year …. And he’d (Kreider) be at 68 goals already …. and on 82 game pace for 76 goals

      Oh… and CK has but a single EN goal this year… Ovi has 8; AM …4

      • Kreider’s shooting % is laughably unsustainable. Great season for him but regression is unavoidable.

      • Hi Brock

        Absolutely correct… unsustainable for his career…. But he’ll still end up THIS year at over 20%…. So for THIS year… he is my choice as best pure goal scorer

      • I would be shocked if Kyle KFC Connor didn’t have just as many, if not more, highlight reel goals this season than anyone else.

      • Dear Pengy, come on bro, getting shots on goal, esp. at 5 on 5, is very hard to do. The fact that Matthews gets so many is a tribute to his skill not the other way around. Analytics are pretty clear on shot percent regression. No question Kreider is having a great season but he’s a rush scorer off the wing and you only get so many a game. Also, Matthews played the first seven games coming off wrist surgery and he’s played fewer games than his closest competitors. What he’s done this year is notable.

    • Caper, I’m a big Kreider fan and have always defended him from critics trashing him for being inconsistent. Always felt like he would be a yearly 30 goal scorer but shortened seasons and injuries (he’s played through a bunch)always seem to plague him. Have to say though: he’s benefitted greatly from new rules on cross checking plus 25 goals on a PP with Panarin,Zib, and Fox helps. I’d say the “quiet 50” is due mostly to a lack of highlight reel goals.

  3. Leafs…. Glad for the win… Habs played great…. This could have gone either way

    Saw Oil/Avs game…. I’m much more a fan of high scoring games… but that was exciting hockey

    Still a chance for Cats to get Prez trophy (2 points behind Avs)

    WC race in West really tightening!!!

    Pens…. Floundering is putting it politely . Jarry wants two back from yesterday….but he has been very good all season and still with those two poor positional goals he had a few 10 bellers and he was 907 yesterday

    This was not Playoff hockey. Sully… you’ve tried every kind of line mixup; you’ve pulled goalies; you’ve juggled D combos; you’ve benched key players; you’ve had healthy scratches…. Everything done ……but….CR in press box. Two more key guffaws leading to goals yesterday; with 3 more spectacular saves (from Jarry) stopping CR from being on ice and directly affecting 5 goals against.

    He at no time ever should be on the 3 on 5 PK….. you had a completely rested Tanger…. And putCR out there… covering no one… that’s on you Sully. You’ve tried everything else… why not have CR in the press box for a few games… worth the try. You can see how frustrated Sid is getting (throwing a sucker punch)…. gedderdone

    Dumo has also struggled of late… give him a game in the press box to get a better perspective

    Try this for a couple of games

    Tanger Matheson
    Marino Pettersson
    Freidman P-O J

    • Did not get a chance to see the game yesterday. How many missed penalties were not called on Ovechkin and how many dirty plays were there by that thug Wilson.

      • Hi Sandman

        2 overt missed penalties on EACH of Ovi and Thughead and Hathaway

        That said… Sid gave a sucker punch (light but a sucker punch still the same) and got away with a penalty; AND missed Gino hook; AND missed Marino hook

        Jarry wants two back he should have had… but many excellent saves

        Pens missed 2 gaping nets; Samsonov let a true softie in; and Pens had two key posts and out; but Samsonov had some great saves as well

        Pens got a 5 on 3 PK then seconds in …. Shot over the boards…. So guaranteed 2 Min 5 on 3 (unless a goal scored…. Which happened)

        2 EN goals.. so really a 4-3 game… game was 3-3 @ 5 on 5…. but Caps outshot Pens 43-32 overall…. So truly closer than score indicated, but alas Caps deserved the win

        Pens not trending in right direction

        Better win today….CR in Pressbox would be a great start

  4. Haha Caper after seeing that 51-50 in your post, it reminded me of the Van Halen album named after the crimanally insane police code (5150) And yup it fits! Matthews stealing the spotlight and having an insane goal scoring run! The only other thing that could be more fitting would be Matthews fitting the “C” at some point.

    It almost seemed weird seeing the greatest goal scorer ever from the Maple leafs with no “A” or “C” on his jersey. And yes I know why it is not there (mooning at the wrong time) Butt,…< lol couldn't resist!

    Onwards and Upwards
    Strap on those blue and white capes and fly!!

  5. The Habs press release indicated that Drouin should be ready for the start of training camp. They should have added “hopefully with another team”.

    • How many goals with Matthews score in the Leafs upcoming 6 playoff games?

      • There will be at least 24 games Matthews will have the opportunity to fill the net !!

      • I wouldn’t put money on that

  6. Bruins/Caps …. Expect a very physical game from the Caps today ….Bruins are always very quiet about the extent of their player injuries … upper body .. lower body …. Come on man !!!!

  7. Bruins -124 today …away…. With two very important players out … interesting

  8. Didn’t realize this Bruins /thug-as in caps game was on ..

    Interesting to say the least

  9. Know the Bruins had a injury to Dman MG …. But Geez Louise but McAvoy 28+ minutes ….. WOW!!!!!!!!