NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 17, 2022

by | Oct 17, 2022 | News, NHL | 23 comments

Brad Marchand is practicing with the Bruins, Wild goalie Marc-Andre Fleury acknowledges his poor start, Matt Murray’s injury could have a silver lining for the Leafs, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The NHL didn’t schedule any games for Sunday, Oct. 17, 2022, so no game recaps this morning.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Brad Marchand returned to practice with his Bruins teammates for the first time since undergoing double hip surgery in May. The 34-year-old winger was a full participant in a light on-ice practice Sunday. “I feel really good. Today was more of a mental victory than anything, “ said Marchand. “It’s been a long four months.”

Boston Bruins winger Brad Marchand (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Marchand is expected to return to action around the American Thanksgiving long weekend in late November. He’ll be participating in morning skates with his teammates for the time being.

Speaking of the Bruins, they recalled defenseman Dan Renouf. That move suggests Brandon Carlo could be sidelined for a while with an upper-body injury suffered on Saturday against the Arizona Coyotes.

TWINCITIES.COM: Marc-Andre Fleury acknowledged his poor start to this season and admitted he has to improve his play. The 37-year-old goaltender gave up 11 goals on 49 shots over his first two games and was booed off the ice by Wild fans during their 7-6 loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Saturday. “I don’t blame them; I’d boo myself,” said Fleury. “I was not good. I feel bad for the fans. I feel bad for my teammates.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wild signed Fleury to a two-year contract and handed him the starter’s job after trading Cam Talbot to the Ottawa Senators. He’s at a point in his career where age could be catching up with him. If so, the Wild could be in serious trouble between the pipes this season.

TORONTO SUN: Michael Traikos suggests losing goalie Matt Murray for four weeks to an adductor injury could be the best thing that could’ve happened to the Maple Leafs. With Murray on long-term injured reserve, it provided them with the salary-cap wiggle room to recall Wayne Simmonds, Nick Robertson and Victor Mete.

This situation gives them an opportunity to fully evaluate Ilya Samsonov in the starter’s job. It also provides the club with a much-needed kick in the pants after they seemed to sleep-walk through their first two games of the season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The more important factor is Samsonov’s performance. If he proves up to the challenge as a starting goaltender, the Leafs will be fine. Their season could depend on it.

NEW YORK POST: Sammy Blais returns to the Rangers lineup tonight against the Anaheim Ducks. It’s his first NHL regular-season game since suffering a season-ending knee injury last November. An upper-body injury suffered during preseason play kept him out of the lineup through the Rangers’ first three games of this season.

NHLPA released a statement on Saturday after the NHL announced it was closing its investigation into allegations of sexual assault and grooming leveled at Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Ian Cole due to lack of evidence.


ST. LOUIS POST-DISPATCH: Tyler Pitlick is still skating in practice with the St. Louis Blues despite being released from his professional tryout offer last week. He could earn a contract with the club with Logan Brown looking like he’ll be headed to injured reserve.

THE PROVINCE: It appears Tucker Poolman could be sidelined longer than anticipated as the Vancouver Canucks recalled Noah Juulsen. Poolman was injured during the Canucks 3-2 loss on Saturday to the Philadelphia Flyers.

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks suggests the NHL and NHLPA should reach an agreement at the end of this season to spread the anticipated $9.5 million increase in the salary cap in 2024-25 and 2025-26 over the next three seasons. It would provide an annual cap increase of $3 million in each season, giving some much-needed cap relief to a number of teams next season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Brooks points to a number of teams forced to ice reduced rosters already this season due to constraints brought about by the flattened salary cap. It will rise by just $1 million for next season before jumping by a projected $4.5 million in 2024-25 and another $4 million in 2025-26.

Cap Friendly indicates 13 teams are at or above this season’s $82.5 million cap with another four clubs carrying under $250K in cap room. That makes it difficult for those clubs to ice full rosters or call up replacements from the minors if injuries strike. It could become a problem over the course of the season and perhaps prompt some team owners to call upon the league for some form of cap relief of the kind suggested by Brooks.

The argument can be made that it’s the fault of those teams for overspending on talent. However, some of those big contracts were signed several years ago before the COVID-19 pandemic flattened hockey-related revenues in 2019-20 and 2020-21, freezing the cap over the past two seasons and leading to marginal increases for this season and the next.

Those contracts were signed with the understanding that the cap would continue rising based on the annual projections from league headquarters. No one expected a global pandemic that led to shortened schedules and significantly reduced revenue nor can they be faulted for that lack of foresight.


  1. Couldn’t the league instantly increase the cap by a million or two while still reclaiming dollars via escrow from the players? I understand the arguments against doing so, but it would be terrible for standings to be decided by which teams can play a full roster.

  2. That is a pretty decent idea by Brooksie. Doubt they will do it though

  3. Good to hear Brad practising with the team, this brings a smile to my ears. With all their injuries the bruins have about as much of a chance of beating Florida as P & B do of winning the Pulitzer Prize.who the heck is this Dan Renouf character?never heard of him. Should have brought up Wolf he had a great pre season, ooh ohh do you hear it?here comes the Bobbsy twins.

  4. Matt Murray creating cap space is optimistic
    Leafs need a player of Simmons “growl” to keep other teams from
    “Gooning” Matthews

    Or trade for Tom Wilson

    • Who’s also on IR recovering from torn ACL surgery – prognosis late November to early January

  5. I don’t agree with the argument that the cap issues aren’t team management’s faults. Better planning and use of picks to trade away bad contracts are always an option. If you have to give up a #1 to get rid of a bad contract, then that is the result of washing away your mistake

    • Plus the fact that a premature cap increase would benifit largely the richest teams in the league and throw “parity” and cost-conscious teams under the bus. But, maybe they need to follow the examle of our federal governments….🙄

      • Would it only benefit the “rich” teams? Right now Florida, Tampa, Carolina, Vancouver, Calgary, Nashville New Jersey are all over , at or near the upper limit.

        While Detroit and Chicago have 5-6 million in cap space.

        Do you think of given the chance Florida, Tampa Carolina etc wouldn’t add a Patrick Kane at full hit today?

        The days of the big evil rich teams spending too much while the Edmonton oilers, Florida panthers management complain are long over. None of these Gms show any restraint anymore.

        I’d say nearly half of all deals signed today by all teams are signed knowing they won’t age well before the ink is dry.

  6. Plus the fact that a premature cap increase would benifit largely the richest teams in the league and throw “parity” and cost-conscious teams under the bus. But, maybe they need to follow the example of our federal governments….🙄

    • ….

  7. Jz. Love the comparison of cap strapped teams to federal government. When govt gets into a bind they just print more money.

  8. Need to very careful with Carlo if it’s even possible I worry that he’s probably getting near the end of his once promising career .. not absolutely sure but I believe this is concussion #3 or 4 in the NHL and not even knowing if he had any before turning pro … if you ever had a concussion it’s scary..

  9. Son…Dad I’ve spent all my allowance for the next 3 years and even borrowed money from my friends can I have an advance
    Dad(Bettman)..No. learn to use your allowance better and spend less
    Son..Stomps away mad at dad

  10. The injuries are adding up: 3 of their top 4 dman out and 2 thirds of the first line.

    Back-to-back against Florida and Ottawa should be an early test for Boston depth.

    Considering 5 of the 6 goals came from the bottom 6 and the goal scoring dman Forbort with the other. No problem. right

    • They are toast tonight Cappy. Even with all the players back they wouldn’t win against the panthers. Tonight It’ll be like a Shooting gallery for Florida.

      • I think we all knew the B’s would have to battle the first 1/3 of the season without key players, and if another injury came on the blue line, bigger problem, and here we are.

        Is what it is, not like you can sign an extra 2 d-men that you won’t need when guys come back. So need to battle through it as best they can. 2 and 0 so far.

        B’s are in tough tonight against a good team, but FLA is on the 3rd game on the road in 5 nights, so wouldn’t count the B’s out just yet.
        Need Linus to have another solid game and we have a shot.

        Go B’s.

  11. Re;Boston
    They are PROJECTED CAP Sace $0 today

    Players on IR
    -Brandon Carlo’s $4,100
    -Brad marchant $6,125,000

    So they need to clear the above before they bring these 2 back with there $10.250,000 in Salary⁉️

    Coach said this AM, Carlos injury is not as Bad as excepted and will be back sooner…..
    They could both be back within 6-7 days

    -Charlie McAvoy’s salary is $9,250,000 out on long term
    Boston have 7 d/men at present on the roster with one more coming back they will have to move one now and one latter to make room to make Room for these 2 and $10M in salarys

    Ottawa waiting in the wind to pick up a d/man…🤔

    • You’re not doing the math right Willie.
      Marchand and Carlo can come back into the lineup tomorrow and they would be $76.9M as McAvoy is still out.

      The only issue is whether or not they will accrue enough from Marchand and Carlo, by the time McAvoy comes back. The reason is March and Carlo were added to LTI after the season started so they can accrue the amount every game they miss.

      For easy math purposes assume Charlie misses 50% of the games, they would need to accrue half his salary, or $4.75M. Right now Cap Friendly projects it at $4,796,947.

      • your right Ray,
        but i got my info from Capfrendly…
        did not factor games & projected lost into it

        PROJECTED CAP HIT : $87,296,947
        PROJECTED LTIR USED : $4,796,947

        At the DEADLINE CAP SPACE Tooltip : $4,615,833
        TODAY’S CAP HIT Tooltip : $86,868,334
        with these to coming back they will be way over?

      • Hey Willie, no they are not.
        Add up the total on their active roster – FWDS, D, Tenders, plus Stralman.
        It equals $66.9M.
        March and Carlo come back is a little over $10M so $77M.
        Add in McAvoy at 9.5 and the buried and you get to the $87M # you have.

        Plus they accrue $122K per game that March and Carlo don’t play. Plus McAvoy will only play a partial season, so they don’t need to accrue his entire salary.

        Should be OK without doing anything, close but OK based on return timelines. If they come back sooner, decisions to be made.

  12. Ray, based on Cap Friendly’s tutorial, your calcs are not correct. Assuming there are no other players on LTIR, the Bruins total payroll will have to be under $82.3 (82.5 less Wagner buried penalty) when Charlie McAvoy comes back (and the $82.3 includes Charlie’s salary). Cap Friendly indicates a deadline cap space of $4.6. That is based on McAvoy still being on LTIR. Only way that Boston does not shed a major contract is if McAvoy is out all season.


    • Only way that Boston does not shed a major contract is if McAvoy is out all season.

      OR if Charlie is replaced on LTIR by a player or combo of players with a total contract hit of at least $3 million.

  13. I think I am right Hammer.
    You are not addressing Marchand and Carlo being out right, which can be accrued.
    My understanding is that players placed on LTIR before the season starts cannot be accrued.
    Players placed on IR after the season can be accrued.

    So McAvoy cannot be accrued, Marchand and Carlo can be.

    So it all depends on when these guys come back and how much they have accrued, and how much they need to accrue.