NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 10, 2022

by | May 10, 2022 | News, NHL | 42 comments

The Avalanche swept the Predators, the Penguins take a commanding series lead over the Rangers, the Flames and Panthers even their series 2-2, the Islanders fire Barry Trotz, and much more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines


NHL.COM: The Colorado Avalanche has marched on to the second round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs. They defeated the Nashville Predators 5-3 in Game 4 of their first-round series, sweeping the latter in four straight. Valeri Nichushkin snapped a 3-3 tie in the third period and Nathan MacKinnon added the insurance goal. Cale Makar and Andre Burakovsky each had a goal and two assists for the Avs while Yakov Trenin tallied twice and Filip Forsberg scored for the Predators.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Predators played the entire series without starting goaltender Juuse Saros, who was sidelined late in the season by a lower-body injury. Even if he’d been healthy, he probably wouldn’t have prevented the sweep. The Predators struggled down the stretch and were no match for the powerful Avalanche, who await the winner of the Minnesota Wild-St. Louis Blues series.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby (NHL Images).

Sidney Crosby had a goal and two assists as the Pittsburgh Penguins rode a five-goal second-period outburst to a 7-2 drubbing of the New York Rangers in Game 4 of their best-of-seven opening-round series. Jake Guentzel and Kris Letang each had two points for the Penguins. They hold a commanding 3-1 lead in the series and can wrap things up in Game 5 back in New York on Wednesday night. Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin gave up six goals on 30 shots and go the hook following the second period.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Penguins have lit up Shesterkin over the past two games, tallying a combined 10 games against the presumptive favorite to win this year’s Vezina Trophy as the NHL’s top goalie. However, this was a complete team defeat by the Rangers, who have been neutralized at both ends of the rink by a veteran Penguins club with more in the tank than most observers (like me) believed when this series began.

An overtime goal by Carter Verhaeghe carried the Florida Panthers to a 3-2 victory in Game 4 to tie their first-round series at two games apiece. It was Verhaeghe’s second goal of the game. Sam Reinhart tied the game late in the third for the Panthers. T.J. Oshie and Evgeny Kuznetsov replied for the Capitals while Ilya Samsonov made 29 saves.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Panthers outshot the Capitals 32-16 and seemed on the verge of stealing this one before Reinhart sent the game to overtime. The series returns to Florida for Game 5 on Wednesday. Florida coach Andrew Brunette wasn’t happy with Oshie for what he felt was a targeted hit to the head of Panthers forward Sam Bennett. There was no call on the play. Bennett remained in the game and got the primary assist on the winning goal.

The Calgary Flames burned the Dallas Stars 4-1 in Game 4 of their series. Johnny Gaudreau scored on a penalty shot in a three-goal third-period for the Flames. Stars netminder Jake Oettinger turned in a 50-save performance in a losing cause. The series returns to Calgary for Game 5 on Wednesday tied at two games apiece.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Calgary’s margin of victory would’ve been much wider if not for Oettinger, who did everything he could to give his club a fighting chance. The Flames dominated Dallas in this contest. The Stars made it interesting when Tyler Seguin scored on the power play late in the third to cut the Flames’ lead to 3-1 before Mikael Backlund put the game out of reach.


NEW YORK POST: The New York Islanders fired head coach Barry Trotz yesterday. “I believe this group of players needs a new voice,” said general manager Lou Lamoriello. “This is not negative on Barry Trotz. He is a tremendous human being.” Assistant coaches Lane Lambert and Mitch Korn remain under contract for next season, though Trotz’s replacement will have a say over whether they’ll return for 2022-23.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a stunning move by Lamoriello. Under Trotz, the Islanders went to the Eastern Conference Final in 2020 and the semifinal in 2021. A season-opening five-week road trip while awaiting the opening of their new arena followed by a COVID-19 outbreak contributed to their failure to reach the playoffs this season. Nevertheless, the Isles GM felt his aging club needs a new bench boss going forward.

Changes could also be coming to the Islanders roster. Lamoriello indicated he’s like to bolster his blueline’s offense and he could make a trade involving his forwards. For now, however, whoever replaces Trotz and where the former Isles coach ends up are the hot topics of speculation. I’ll have more in today’s NHL Rumor Mill update.

NHL.COM: The Tampa Bay Lightning’s Victor Hedman, Nashville Predators’ Roman Josi and Colorado Avalanche’s Cale Makar are the finalists for the James Norris Memorial Trophy as this season’s top NHL defenseman. The winner will be announced later in the postseason.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: No surprises there. All three are worthy nominees. Hedman won the award in 2018 and Josi in 2020 while Makar was a finalist last season.

The 2022 NHL Draft Lottery will be held at 6:30 PM ET on Tuesday. The Montreal Canadiens have the best odds at 18.5 percent, followed by the Arizona Coyotes (13.5), Seattle Kraken (11.5), Philadelphia Flyers (9.5) and New Jersey Devils (8.5).

TWINCITIES.COM: Minnesota Wild winger Kevin Fiala is struggling to replicate his regular-season production in his club’s first-round series with the St. Louis Blues. The 25-year-old winger had a career-high 33 goals and 85 points this season but has managed only an assist in four games thus far against the Blues.

OTTAWA SUN: The Senators have parted ways with Pierre McGuire after only nine months in his role as senior vice president of hockey development.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: McGuire, a long-time TV hockey analyst and a former NHL general manager was hired by late Senators owner Eugene Melnyk last year. He still has two years remaining on his contract. General manager Pierre Dorion had no comment, which probably speaks volumes for his opinion of McGuire’s contributions.

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: The San Jose Sharks signed pending unrestricted free agents Alexander Barabanov and Jaycob Megna to two-year contract extensions. As per Cap Friendly, Barabanov’s annual average value is $2.5 million with a 10-team no-trade list while Megna will earn $762,500 annually.

TSN: Montreal Canadiens goaltender Samuel Montembeault underwent successful surgery on his right wrist last Friday. He’s expected to be ready for the start of training camp in September.


  1. We want Igor! We want Igor!

    Think that was my favorite fan chant since I was a kid and Wendy’s gave out free chili if the pens scored 7 goals.

    We want chili! We want chili!

    • Loved the full effort by Pens

      I’m very confident the chants rattled the young Shesterkin

      In NY tomorrow….Different setting…. Pens must put full pedal to the metal from the get go and never take the foot off

      Most surprising effort this series (although not much on the scoresheet) to me is Kappy…. Seems to have stepped it up …. Nice assist last night

      • I don’t think Shesterkin is a mental weakling. I don’t believe “chants” took him off his game.

        I think the failed team effort in front of him, and pucks behind him took him off his game.

        The man looked absolutely beside himself every time they showed him after he was pulled.

        If any goaltender should pull a “Roy” mid game. It should be this poor guy.

        A brilliant season flushed by an embarrassing performance in front of him.

      • Don’t know about mental weakling but tough to argue that the playoff pressure and the away atmosphere didn’t contribute. Many of those tips were unstoppable but he also let in a few that he should have had. You don’t get pulled two straight games without shouldering some of the blame. And the fact georgiev looked much stronger also points to Igor showing some cracks.

      • Hi CO

        Sorry if it came across that I believed the chants were Shesterkin’s single cause for the outcome.

        He is certainly not a mental weakling IMHO

        True …. Failed support in front of him ; AND pucks behind him certainly threw him; and strong contributing factors in the Pens goals scored…. Little doubt in that

        That said…. The chants, IMHO, exacerbated the other two contributing factors above; and added to the eventual outcome

        I truly believe (again just my opinion) that if the same 36 skaters played this game , with this same effort (or lack thereof depending on viewpoint) in NYC…. Where Fans are cheering for IS, rather than jeering AT him…. That his (Shesterkin’s) performance would be better than last night’s, and very likely less GAs. Not necessarily a Ranger win…. just less GAs

        I can’t get in his head… so no way I can know for sure

        Just my opinion…. as I always say… that’s what Lyle’s site is all about…. Differences of opinions

        Fully agree… brilliant reg season… will win Vez; remains my pick for Hart (most valuable to HIS team)

      • Goal 1, Crosby alone in front of the net, goal 2 deflected off Vatranos skate, goal 3 Guentzel left alone in front of the net for an easy one timer, (actually runs into Sheterkin), goal 4 heavy traffic (Shesterkin should have had this one), goal 5 double deflection., goal 6 seconds after goal 5 another deflected puck in traffic. Maybe goal 6 was a save he should have made.

        Bottom line, you continuously let players own the crease in front of your goaltender and this is the result.

        I said last night watching this game that a lot of blame would wrongfully be placed on this poor kid. Undeserved.

      • @Pengy
        worst Ranger game ever for me

        Extra hurts when you can see the Pens plan and the Rangers not adapting from your sofa.
        Starts with the D letting the Pens get behind them over and over again…
        And the faceoffs—Copp is a decent FO guy and he should of been taking them for Chytil the way he was losing so easily

        Something is wrong with Fox and its not just losing his D partner. He is not reading plays like he was most of the season.
        And its not like the Pens have more speed than the Rangers outside of Kapanen.
        The Pens brains are winning this easily

      • Pengy, if you’re right and the chants did rattle him (Captain Obvious cites some good alternative reasons for the collapse), then he’s clearly not yet in Hart territory. Not when you have the likes of McDavid, Matthews, Gaudreau in the mix.

    • Remember one of the last games of the season the Rangers thoroughly beat the Penguins 5-1 in New York.
      Igor was taunting the Penguins as they left the Ice waiving bye bye…Karmas a bitch. You get what you deserve now the Rangers in front of him haven’t been great but you get the point

      The Penguins are doing this with out the best defenseman Dumoulin, the number # 1 and 2 goalies and second line scoring winger Rakell. (who has been great with the Penguins)

      No one gave the Penguins a chance….love the way they are playing..

  2. Pens look dialed in. Nyr is toast. Bruins will need to bring more of same to win tonight

    • MB4, I am in Vegas.
      Should I drop $200 on the B’s?
      Rick, what say you?

      Going to on the Oil.

      B’s? I’m struggling with that one.

      • Ray…. Go a G-Note on the Oil!

        Lowrey’s for dinner??

        Is it as packed as usual on Vegas strip? Or less due to Covid concerns?

        Haven’t been in 3 years (due to Covid)

      • Do it, Ray.

      • Ray, is McAvoy in? Is Lindholm in? Bergeron will be facing Stall most of the night… Yes put down $300 on a bruins win.

        Head over to dirty D*cks were the insults are free; well except for the high price of a drink.

      • Will check all that Caper before I hit the book.
        Ya busy here Peggy.
        Killing time waiting for the wife to get sh*t together.

        Rick need your take.

      • Hi Ray

        Re “ Killing time waiting for the wife to get sh*t together.”…. Just tell her your going down to the casino with $100 bills and guarantee her that you will be asking every time for another card (in Blackjack) …. even if you are showing 17 or more

        That may speed Mrs. Ray up

      • Ray. I don’t think I would for this game with both Lindholm and mcavoy still out Tall ask of bruins with canes controlling the match ups at home I would for series though

      • Ray. Mcavoy is in tonight. So your odds just got little better is you make the bet

    • Bruins have looked good in Boston and they are back in this series ….

      And without McAvoy too hope he returns

      • He’s back today just cleared protocol

  3. 10 points for Makar…. 4 games …wow. I thought Sid was doing great …. 9 in 4…. Both on fire…. But 2.5 PPG in playoffs…. By a D-Man…. Wow

    Flames… see… all you need is 53 shots on Oettinger (sp?) …..

    Pens…. Now that was a full on effort… Kudos. Just got one more game exactly like that… and it’s on to round 2 🤞🙏🤞🙏

    Oshie hit to the head…. How do they miss that???… unbelievable!!!!!….AND it resulted in a go-ahead goal by Caps!!!! Not sure of his (Oshie’s) suspension (if any) history; but this is a game suspension minimum.

    Hedman, Jossi, Makar for Norris… no surprise…. This should be close between Jossi and Makar….it was Makar’s to lose in Feb and prob up to early March….Then Jossi’s massive push and ended up 10 points ahead of Makar

    Re Maguire gone from Sens…… “ na na na na…..na na na na…. Heh heh heh… B-Bye”

    Re Trotz firing…. GMLL…. WTFuddleDuddle?

    • i know votes for norris are in already… and i think josi wins it..but my god not sure there is a better game changing player in nhl right now than makar…physical, kills penalties, skating off the charts and his hockey iq is darn right scary

      • Agree fully 2001AA

        If the voting ended today (it closed at season end)…. Makar gets Norris 100%

        Due to recency bias, as at time the votes are sent in (most voters send in just before deadline)…. Jossi likely has the nod…. Will be close

  4. The Flames certainly tossed off with authority whatever smothering defensive blanket Dallas had applied in the first 3 games with a 53-shot onslaught. That one could just as easily have been 9-1. Regaining home ice advantage, I think they’ll now go on to win this series – as expected at the start.

    Florida, on the other hand, were lucky to come away with that 3-2 OT win over Washington to tie that series.

    And, as I said yesterday in a post where I apologized for erroneously implying that Shesterkin has been a general sieve “I was just thinking of that bad period and only meant it in the context of, if it happens again …” well, it did – 6 goals on 30 shots. That is not the stuff of a Hart winner, just as it’s misleading to suggest that he was single-handedly responsible for the Rangers strong season. Georgiev (who came in in relief and stopped 10 of 11) had 15 of their seasonal wins in a back-up role while strong seasons were enjoyed by Panarin, Zibanejad and Kreider and very good ones by Strome. Goodrow, Lafreniere, Lindgren & Miller.

    • Did you watch the team in front of Shesterkin? Of the goals scored on him last night, id say one was on him. The rest was lazy garbage in front of him.

      Pittsburgh has shown zero respect in either zone to NYs defense. It’s shocking NY hasn’t tried to run the offense through the defense. Shocking.

      • I felt bad for the kid, I really did. And I hope for his sake that he hasn’t been rattled to the point where it takes him some considerable time and “mind” adjustment to recover.

        But regardless of his seasonal stats I just don’t see him as a Hart winner. In the long history of the award, dating back to 1923-24, there have been 97 winners and just 5 times has it gone to a goalie with one of the, Dominic Hasek, winning it in back-to-back years (1996-97 and 1997-98). Price won it in 2014-15 and, with one exception, you have yo go back to 1949-50 when it was won by NYR goalie Chuck Rayner and then 1928-29 by another NYR goalie, Roy Worters. In each of those cases they had several full seasons under their belts.

        The one exception was Jose Theodore in 2001-02 and that one is generally ranked as THE worst award in its history as the Habs had finished 4th in their division, just 5 ahead of last-place Buffalo.

      • Sorry George, but Theodore was certainly a worthy Hart winner. He was absolutely lights out that year. Without him, the Habs don’t finish anywhere near the playoffs. That was the year that Koivu was out almost all season with cancer and they had numerous other injuries as well.

  5. McGuire was a curious “hire” in the first place by the late Eugene Melnyk and assigned what can only be described as vague duties under the lofty title of Senior Vice President of Hockey Development.

    It can’t have sat well with Dorion who could only have viewed it as the thinly-disguised message “we’d better see improvement soon or you’re looking at your replacement …” Now it seems like the Melnyk sisters are content to let Erin Crowe, Anthony LeBlanc and the Board Of Directors go back to letting Dorion run the team and make player changes as he sees fit.

  6. Gallant said it best. “We played soft, we were soft all over the ice “

    At one point Zibanejad, Kreider, -3.

    Vatrano , Fox, Miller all finished -3.

    Panarin, Vatrano, Kreider, Fox etc. not near good enough.

    Nemeth, how many bad penalties resulting in pp goals will it take to get him out of the lineup?

    The kid line, which concerned me the most going into this series outplayed my expectations.

    I said very early on, NY cannot continuously play like they did early in the season and hope to sustain winning. I was wrong.

    I said that style of play would never work in the playoffs , I was right!

    I didn’t expect NY to make the playoffs. I thought they weren’t quite there yet. They’re not.

    This is the result of a confused and hurried “rebuild “.

    This team will need to take a step backwards next year imo.

    • Wow. As a pens fan I love this post. A vezina goalie albeit having a rough playoffs. A Norris discussion d man. A top of the league winger. Two recent top two picks. If this team steps backwards now not sure when they start stepping forward.

      • Well they’ll be losing a lot of what this roster looks like today.

        Strome, Copp, Vatrano. Pick 2 of the 3. Because 2 are out the door. Can anyone really expect a repeat performance from Kreider?

        Another year of development for Kakko, Laffrienere Schneider etc, and much needed cap space the year after will help.

        But next year, I’d expect a realistic drop off. Unless they plan on Sheterkin having another year like this.

    • A step backwards? Maybe. I see this performance against the Penguins as growing pains for a Rangers club filled with young talent, most of whom aren’t used to NHL postseason hockey.

      • I am a strong believer of you have to lose to learn how to win.

        But, with the reality of things I point out above, I’d see a temporary step backwards.

    • Hi CO

      The old adage of “it ain’t over until the fat lady sings” comes to mind

      I’m a Pens fan…. and I regretfully say….. it ain’t over…. Yet

      IF Rangers and Pens put forth the efforts they did last night, in tomorrow’s game…. then likely the fat lady is doing her voice scales during the second intermission

      That said….. a convincing Win tomorrow by Blueshirts, then puts a ton of pressure on Pens…. Who then in no way want to see a game 7 back in NY

      Do I believe as at now the Pens are likely to win the series… Yes

      Am I certain, or nigh certain… No

      Remember …. Opening goal last night was a softie by Domingue

      If that happens early in MSG tomorrow …. And Rangers fans collectively “jeer” Domingue; and Pens falter….. just like the guy in the Bits ‘N Bites commercial…..”Whole new ball game”

      I’m hoping it’s over in 5 🤞🙏🤞🙏🤞🙏

      • I agree , and NY has come back against Pittsburgh and Washington years ago from 3-1 leads. But this team just does not seem ready or capable.

        If I wrong, I’ll be happy to be wrong. I just can’t see it. Maybe they win game 5. But I can’t see them winning 3 periods in a row at this point, never mind 3 games in a row.

    • Gallant did not change anything except moving some wingers around.
      Sullivan had a new game plan starting in Game 3
      and Gallant somehow cant see the obvious

      Rangers getting beat downlow especially in front of their own net. and offensively trying to perfect shot over LD’s glove. Its Louie D! do what the Pens are doing….make the goalie uncomfortable

      The fact that the best 3 Rangers have been Miller, Kakko and Laf should not be at this stage.

  7. Quite the shocker about Trotz. I can’t figure that one out. My son is an Isles fan, so I follow them as well.
    Got a voice note from a Ranger fan friend after the news broke. He told me that he spoke to a friend who’s a huge Isles fan and has had a suite at whatever place they’ve played for a while. He told him he recently talked to Mitch Kron and asked about plans for next season and Korn was evasive. So he figured something was up. Who knows what goes on behind the scenes. Still not a decision I understand.

    McGuire on the other hand I completely understand. It’s obvious he was hired by Melnyk over Dorions objection. Now that Melnyk has passed on, the writing was on the wall for McGuire who should not have been hired in the first place.

  8. Don’t believe that talk about Montembeault having surgery. It’s part of a conspiracy. In reality, Shesterkin has been kidnapped by gamblers who’ve managed to sneak Montembeault in the Rangers net the past two games.

  9. C’mon, Rick. Time for some of that sweet voodoo you’ve been working!
    Great job so far.

  10. Rangers look slow, real slow, so that hill they have to climb needs to be with speed and motivation. Crosby looks the Hart trophy recipient.

  11. Yeah, seems like this was Trotz’s fault, its not like the average age of the Isles is 40.
    No chance Trotz doesn’t get scooped, there will be no shortage of jobs offers for him I reckon.