NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – June 8, 2022

by | Jun 8, 2022 | News, NHL | 15 comments

The Lightning tie the Eastern Conference Finals at two games apiece, P.K. Subban wins the King Clancy Trophy, new contracts for the Blue Jackets’ Jack Roslovic and the Stars’ Denis Gurianov, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The Eastern Conference Finals is now a best-of-three as the Tampa Bay Lightning downed the New York Rangers 4-1 to even the series at two games apiece. Ondrej Palat had a goal and two assists, Andrei Vasilevskiy made 34 saves and Nikita Kucherov, Steven Stamkos and Pat Maroon also scored for the Lightning. Artemi Panarin replied for the Rangers. The series returns to New York for Game 5 on Thursday.

Tampa Bay Lightning winger Ondrej Palat (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was a dominating performance by the Lightning, who have recovered their footing after dropping the first two games of this series. Their puck possession and defensive game have improved plus they’re doing a better job staying out of the penalty box.

The Rangers entered this game down one center with Ryan Strome still day-to-day with a lower-body injury. This lost another when Filip Chytil left the game in the second period with an upper-body injury following a hard hit from Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman. Rangers coach Gerard Gallant expects Chytil will be fine but is still awaiting further word on his condition.

New Jersey Devils defenseman P.K. Subban is this year’s winner of the King Clancy Trophy for his commitment to racial and social justice, underserved youth and COVID-19 relief. Subban is the first player in Devils history to win this award.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to Subban for his well-deserved and long-overdue recognition of his off-ice contributions to his community. He was also active in charity work during his time with the Montreal Canadiens and Nashville Predators.

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: The Blue Jackets signed Jack Roslovic to a two-year, $8 million contract. The 25-year-old center was slated to become a restricted free agent with arbitration rights on July 13.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The annual average value of Roslovic’s contract is $4 million, leaving the Blue Jackets with $22.8 million in cap space with 17 players under contract for 2022-23. He got off to a slow start to this season but steadily improved to finish with a career-best 22 goals and 45 points. Roslovic will eligible for unrestricted free agent status following this deal.

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: The Stars inked Denis Gurianov to a one-year, $2.9 million contract. The 25-year-old winger will be a restricted free agent with arbitration rights next summer.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Stars have $14.6 million in cap space with 17 players under contract next season.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: Andrew Cogliano could miss the 2022 Stanley Cup Final. Avalanche head coach Jared Bednar said the veteran forward is “out for now” with an injury similar to Nazem Kadri, who suffered a broken thumb in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals. Bednar said the club isn’t really sure on the timeline of return for both players.

THE SEATTLE TIMES: Kraken goaltender Chris Driedger underwent successful surgery on Monday to repair a torn MCL suffered while playing for Canada in the 2022 IIHF World Championships. His estimated timeline of recovery is seven-to-nine months.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: The Canadiens hired Marie-Phillip Poulin as a player development consultant. It will be a part-time position over the next four years for the three-time Women’s Olympic gold medalist as she continues her playing career with the goal of pursuing her fourth Olympic gold at the 2026 Turin Games.


  1. Rangers once again looked anemic at 5×5. Defensive breakdowns on 1st 2 goals were typical. Shesterkin can’t stop everything. Don’t think Strome would’ve made a difference. NY still holds home ice, but not looking good.

    • Tampa’s system is winning right now. Rangers spread out their D and had better legs to start the series.

      • Tampa in 6 then?

      • Quite possibly.

      • I realize this one is far from over but, as Lyle wrote, Tampa has definitely regained their footing.

  2. If I were The Rangers I imagine there’s some nagging doubts, they woke up the bear.
    Tampa’s gonna take this series. I’m trying to figure out what Boston’s battle plan is?! Okay three of the most important Pieces are out for the beginning of the season, two are not clear whether they are coming back, no coach…they let go a good one. It’s like Pee Wee Herman promoted to commander of HMCS Haida, in the middle of a minesweep. In my four decades of watching bruins play I have never seen such a frigging mess!!!

    • Who are the 2 not coming back?? 37 and??

    • Rick, can’t count out Rangers yet. Seen this in 2 previous series.

  3. Decent signing by Columbus of RFA Roslovic for 2 years at $4 mil per – although now he becomes a UFA at the same time as Voracek.

    The deal didn’t impact their top 5 cap hits, keeping them – for the moment – at 41% of the cap on 5 players. That will change dramatically, however, when the Laine RFA negotiations are concluded, as he’s coming off a $7.5 mil hit. Their Top 5 at this time are

    Werenski – $9,583,000; Voracek – $8,250,000. Nyquist – $5,500,000; Bjorkstrand – $5,400,000; Merzlikins – $5,400,000

    Which brings up an interesting topic of conversation, considering the differences of opinion on the long-term validity of the contract of Darnell Nurse, which kicks in next season: $9.250,000 per to 2029-30 when he’ll be 35 y/o. This past season he had 9g 26a 35 pts and was a +18 over 71gp.

    In Columbus you have a similar situation with Zach Werenski whose new deal starts next season at $9,583,333 to 2027-28 when he’ll be a still young 31 y/o. In 68gp this season he had 11g 37a 48 pts, but was a -15.

    So, whose is the better deal?

    • Who’s the better player, George? Columbus moved Seth Jones to keep Werenski and Nurse plays 25 minutes a game on a decent team.

      • That’ll be the subject of endless debate, BCLeaf Fan – especially as the years go by and take their toll.

        They’re both big guys – Werenski 6’2″ 213 and Nurse 6’4″ 221 – so they should both wear well. And if the cap eventually begins to rise again at the same pace as pre-Covid, these could well be looked upon as bargain deals.

  4. VASY.

    And coach Cooper, and one specific aspect of maturity and experience. Every coach (and commentator, and commentor here) can see flaws and talk about adjustments. Few teams can have am ipad meeting and walkthrough between games and put adjustments into place as well as the Lightning. Never won the Adams, I guess because the writers figure he has the best players, but the ability to counter a wide variety of teams and change on the fly is a skill. And the trade deadline plug-ins, rookies, and fourth liners all fit in, series after series.

    The value of coaching is really hard to measure, which makes them easy to fire. They keep getting rehired (like Gallant) because the value is there is you aren’t the GM in need of a scapegoat.

    Some of the highest valued coaches are guy who can obviously mold a team into a system: Trotz/Brind’AMour.

    How about “we’ll evaluate what you are doing, figure out how to stop it on the fly, and work as a team to execute.”

    Mika and Kuch are putting on a superstar duel worth watching; he was one Ranger player last night in the building who caused one to hold one’s breath when the puck was on his stick, and, last night, he missed his chances. He had them.

  5. first to George: Nurse will never be a bargain at his contract even if the salary cap goes to $100 million. Second to Richard good insight on Cooper. I don’t pay much attention to the Jack Adams award. This year it was a joke! Brunette was nominated, was schooled in the playoffs and is not even a shoe in to be hired as permanent coach. Meanwhile Boudreau (a proven commodity) took Vancouver and turned them on a dime giving nine cents change and was tied for 12th. And Barry Trotz wasn’t even on the list and has no less than four teams interested in hiring him. I don’t think any coach has done a better job than Mike Sullivan in Pittsburgh year in and year out despite all the major injuries (again this season)!so I guess his finishing 8th is also no surprise based on whatever criteria they used to determine the winner. It’s also no surprise that Cooper and Sullivan are now the longest tenured coaches with their teams in the NHL. Just as skill without effort is meaningless for a player so is having talent and knowing how to use it properly equally important in determining the value of a coach

    • Which is why I have no use for awards that are based on votes as the result of a so-called journalist’s opinion.

      EVERY award should be voted on by the players, including the “all-star” teams – with the one stipulation being that they can’t vote for someone on their team. Better than anyone they know the true value when it comes to such awards or who deserves to be recognized as an “all-star.”