NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 25, 2022

by | Nov 25, 2022 | News, NHL | 30 comments

Remembering Hall-of-Famer Borje Salming, Patrick Marleau adjusts to retirement, the Hurricanes’ offense has short-circuited, plus the latest on Marc-Andre Fleury, Marco Rossi and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NHL.COM: Hockey Hall-of-Famer and former Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Borje Salming passed away from amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) on Thursday at age 71. He was diagnosed with the incurable disease in April but only revealed the diagnosis in August.

Toronto Maple Leafs Hall-of-Fame defenseman Borje Salming. (NHL.com).

Salming blazed a trail for European players to reach the NHL. Joining the Maple Leafs in 1973-74, the Swedish defenseman went on to play 16 seasons in Toronto, becoming their all-time points leader among blueliners (768).

He was a finalist for the Norris Trophy four times, named to the NHL First All-Star Team in 1976-77 and to the Second All-Star Team five times. He played one season with the Detroit Red Wings before returning to his native Sweden to finish his playing career.

Earlier this month, Salming returned to Toronto for the Hall-of-Fame weekend, where he received two standing ovations from Leafs fans.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Salming belongs with Bobby Orr, Denis Potvin, Larry Robinson and Brad Park among the top defensemen of the 1970s. He was the greatest blueliner in Leafs’ history and a true inspiration for European players hoping to join the NHL.

Salming was so beloved by Toronto fans that he received a standing ovation at Maple Leaf Garden during the 1976 Canada Cup tournament when he was introduced as part of Sweden’s starting lineup for a game against Team Canada.

THE ATHLETIC: Patrick Marleau revealed to Kevin Kurz that he had a difficult time adjusting to retirement when his 23-year NHL playing career came to an end in 2021. It even became difficult for him to watch the game on television as the reality that his career was over began to sink in before he officially announced his retirement in May 2022.

Marleau and his family have since relocated to Florida to help further the hockey career of his son, Landon. He also accepted an invitation from the San Jose Sharks to work with prospects at their development camp this past summer.

Marleau is now working as an assistant coach to head coach (and former NHL teammate) Shawn Heins in the under-16 AAA Florida Alliance program. He is also the head coach of the under-12 team, on which his son Jagger plays.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to Marleau in his new career. Perhaps we’ll one day see him return to the NHL as a coach.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: The Carolina Hurricanes are struggling to score this season, managing just 18 goals in his last nine games and a league-worst shooting percentage of 7.7.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Hurricanes last season were ninth overall in goals-per-game average (3.38). This season, they’re 27th at 2.70. Losing top-line winger Teuvo Teravainen to injury is a contributing factor as is the absence of offseason acquisition of winger Max Pacioretty. Losing center Vincent Trocheck to free agency may be another factor. The eventual return of Teravainen and Pacioretty’s debut later this season should boost their production. They’ll need it if they hope to stage a serious run for the Stanley Cup next spring.

TSN: The Minnesota Wild have activated goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury off injured reserve ahead of this afternoon’s game against the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Speaking of the Leafs, Jordie Benn joins fellow defensemen Jake Muzzin, Morgan Rielly and TJ Brodie on the sidelines as he’s week-to-week with an upper-body injury. Don’t expect to see recently-acquired Conor Timmins in this game as the Leafs want to give him some time to get settled.

TWIN CITIES.COM: Speaking of the Wild, general manager Bill Guerin is considering his options for struggling rookie center Marco Rossi, who’s been held scoreless in 16 games and was a healthy scratch in the Wild’s last two contests. One of those options is sending him to their AHL affiliate in Iowa to regain his confidence and scoring touch.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rossi is a highly-touted young forward who was considered among this season’s potential candidates for the Calder Memorial Trophy as NHL rookie of the year. He won’t improve his play by sitting in the press box.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: Avalanche forward Evan Rodrigues is to miss this afternoon’s game against the Nashville Predators as a precautionary measure. He suffered a lower-body injury during Wednesday’s game against the Vancouver Canucks.

OTTAWA SUN: More than 20 potential buyers have expressed interest in purchasing the Ottawa Senators. Among them are Michael Andlauer (owner of the OHL’s Hamilton Bulldogs), Rocco Tullio (owner of the OHL’s London Knights), Farmboy CEO Jeff York, Toronto Star co-owner Paul Rivett, and actor Ryan Reynolds.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A condition of the sale is the Senators cannot be relocated to another city. One reason why there’s so much interest is the potential to construct a new arena near downtown Ottawa. The report noted that the new venue could boost the franchise’s value, which was recently calculated at $655 million.


  1. Speaking of the Senators – in Garrioch’s column this morning he quotes D. J. Smith as saying:

    “There’s no room for negativity at this point … I thought we worked extremely hard (Wednesday) and we didn’t get the result we wanted. Feeling sorry for yourself isn’t going to help and being negative isn’t going to help.”

    While I agree with Smith that team negativity will do nothing to stop the bleeding, at the risk of sounding negative I still think some change in approach is needed – fast – to take into account the strengths – but mainly the weaknesses – of the talent at hand.

    Garrioch then goes on to write: “The effort was there Wednesday against one of the NHL’s best teams, but the result was another loss and a win would do wonders for confidence. Two weeks ago, GM Pierre Dorion called this stretch of games pivotal and the club is 2-5-1 since he made that statement.”

    Can only wonder what Dorion had in mind when he used the term “pivotal?” One goal in each of their last three games is pathetic.

    • Be patient, George. They’re almost there. The players have plenty of fight. They have all the right pieces. Just need a little more seasoning, and a few good bounces along the way. They have terrible puck luck this year.

  2. Salming, to this long-time fan of the game, wasn’t just one of the best D-men of the 1970s, but easily one of the best all-time. It would be impossible to list the consensus Top 10 of all-time without his inclusion.

    • I would list them like this – in no particular order other than Orr at the top

      Bobby Orr
      Paul Coffey
      Nick Lidstrom
      Dennis Potvin
      Larry Robinson
      Brad Park
      Borje Salming
      Scott Stevens
      Ray Bourque
      Doug Harvey

      • Solid list there no doubt at all.

      • Lyle, I certainly agree that Salming belongs up there with the top defensemen of the 1970s. But you omitted one name. Guy Lapointe, a pillar of the Habs defense during the Cup winning years and a force both offensively and defensively.
        George, a very solid list certainly. As with any objective list, there is room for quibbling. I’ll just say that you have Coffey too high and Harvey way too low.

      • Howard, if you read my post again you’ll see that I said “in no particular order other than Orr at the top”

      • Hi George,
        as I’ve seen every one of these great dmen play, including Harvey, I agree with you 100% on your choices for best ten. Every one of them made the game more exciting while added something special for future dmen to aim for.

      • Sorry George, I carelessly missed that part.
        I’d put Orr on top and Harvey number 2. Both of them were innovators who forever changed how defense was played and set the stage for the swift skating two way D-men who followed.
        In that vein, I’d find a place for Eddie Shore on the list.

      • Howard, re Lapointe – as you say there is always quibbling when trying to put together a Top 10 of anything.

        In addition to LaPointe – and Shore – there are also names like Zdeno Chara, Chris Chelios, Red Kelly, Pierre Pilote, Serge Savard, Al MacInnis, Chris Pronger, Brian Leetch, Larry Murphy, Rob Blake, Scott Niedermeyer, Phil Housely, Mark How, Steve Duchesne, Dave Babbych – all solid stars with great careers – but to put any one of them in – who do you knock out?

        Anyway, that’s the way I looked at it when drawing up the list.

      • Excellent list GeorgeO one name i would throw on the list Scott Niedermayer

      • Hey Rock, like you I had the pleasure of seeing them all (except Shore) at various times, and there’s a reason every one of them is – or eventually will be – in the Hall Of Fame.

        Just as these guys are – who I failed to list so far in my posts – but watching each perform in his prime, in many cases – not all certainly but many – the difference in being somewhere in a long list of great D-men and in the Top 10 wasn’t significant – Bill Gadsby, Tom Johnson, Emile “Butch” Bouchard, Tim Horton, Leo Boivin, Harry Howell, Jacques LaPerriere, Fernie Flaman, Marcel Pronovost, Sergei Zubov, Allan Stanley, Bill Quackenbush, Kevin Lowe

      • Rod Langway was a special player. He’d be on a longer list, but he was a good one.

      • George, I wouldn’t put Lapointe on a list of top ten all time. And I wasn’t suggesting that he be. He was great but not all time top ten great. I was suggesting that he was one of the top D-men during his prime years in the 70s, when Salming played. I was responding to Lyle on that one.
        Eddie Shore, on the other hand, could be considered for top ten all time.

    • George

      No doubt. Salming was a very special player even as a diehard Bruin fan He was one of my fave’s

      • Borje Salming and Patrice Bergeron – great players on any team.

  3. Bc leaf.
    On that note Here is a few more players that almost impossible not to cheer for regardless of team

    Just to name a few

    • MrB you’re list shows the quality of the people that play and follow hockey. I doubt there’s a list as long as that for any other sport. It’s one of the things that makes hockey so great.

    • Don’t forget Burnaby Joe Sakic!!

      He, Stevie Y, and Alfie are my top 3 favourite players.

      • Saint

        I can’t believe I missed Sakic and ray borque for that matter

    • The dominator

      • Goalies get no love. Chris Osgood should be in the HOF, along with several others. I mean, Bobby Lou got in…..

    • Good start on a list that could just keep on growing. I will add a couple: Henri Richard and one of my favorite goalies, Gump Worsley.

      • Gump was sure one-of-a-kind. I’ll never forget that interview between periods with Ward Cornell when he was with the Rangers and in Toronto for a Saturday Hockey Might In Canada hook-up. In those days the Rangers were struggling and Worsley regularly faced a barrage of shots. When Cornell asked him “which team gives you the most trouble?” he didn’t even bat an eye with the response “the Rangers!” The coach at that time, Phil Watson, almost blew a cork when he heard about it later.

  4. Regardless o whether Salming belongs on an all time or just all 70’s D-man list. the man was a pioneer and respected in rinks around the league.

    He took whatever was thrown at him an rose above it.

    It was an honour to watch him.

  5. Looks like the choke train just pulled up in Beantown. Like I said before don’t make any judgements till they play the good teams well they’re now playing the good teams and are looking like their regular former hopeless self.

    • Meh. Old man Krech is having a say about that, today, Rick.

    • Lolol. Little trigger happy eh, Rick. Don’t worry. They’re bound to loose a couple in a row……….eventually. Then you can have at ‘er.

    • You revel in failures and it’s very sad.

      • 1/2 empty Rick is his name and game