NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 7, 2022
The Leafs, Red Wings and Panthers emerge the winners in Sunday’s game, the Bruins release Mitchell Miller two days after signing him, and the Panthers’ Matthew Tkachuk and the Canadiens’ Josh Anderson get suspended. Details and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.
NHL.COM: Toronto Maple Leafs captain John Tavares’ 399th career goal was a game-winner in a 3-1 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes. Erik Kallgren made 29 saves for his first career NHL victory while Calle Jarnkrok and William Nylander also scored for the Leafs (7-4-2). Stefan Noesen replied for the 8-3-1 Hurricanes.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Leafs have won three straight in early November after stumbling through October with a 4-4-2 record. Earlier in the day, they announced goaltender Ilya Samsonov was placed on injured reserve with a knee injury and could be sidelined for at least a week.
The Detroit Red Wings nipped the New York Rangers 3-2 on an overtime goal by Dominik Kubalik. Alex Nedeljkovic stopped 27 shots for the win as the Wings improved to 7-3-2 while the Rangers fell to 6-4-3. Mika Zibanejad and Kaapo Kakko scored for the Blueshirts.
Florida Panthers defenseman Brandon Montour had a goal and three assists to lead his club over the Anaheim Ducks 5-3. Sam Reinhart scored two goals and Spencer Knight made 32 saves as the Panthers improved to 7-5-1. John Gibson kicked out 43 shots for the Ducks as they fell to 4-8-1.
BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Two days after the Bruins signed Mitchell Miller to an entry-level contract, team president Cam Neely yesterday released a statement announcing they were parting ways with the 20-year-old defenseman effective immediately.
The Bruins came under heavy scrutiny for signing Miller, who had pleaded guilty in juvenile court six years ago for racially and physically abusing and bullying a Black classmate with developmental disabilities.
In his statement, Neely indicated the Bruins’ decision to sign Miller was based on “careful consideration” of the facts as they were aware of them. The club believed the incident was an isolated one and that Miller had taken “meaningful action to reform and was committed to ongoing development.” However, Neely claimed the decision to terminate the contract was based “on new information.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Bruins’ front office faced a firestorm of criticism for signing Miller. It came not just from around the league but also from their fans, from local media, and from Bruins veterans like Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and Nick Foligno. Even league commissioner Gary Bettman expressed his displeasure when asked about the signing on Saturday.
Neely and the rest of the Bruins front office could’ve spared themselves all of this had they properly vetted Miller’s past in the first place. This was not an “isolated incident” as Miller engaged in physical and verbal abuse of his victim for several years A detailed report about his actions by the Arizona Republic prompted the Arizona Coyotes to relinquish his rights just weeks after selecting him in the fourth round of the 2020 NHL draft. He offered no attempt at contrition until about a week before signing with the Bruins.
The fallout from this could leave a stain on the Bruins’ organization for some time.
NHL.COM: The department of player safety suspended Florida Panthers winger Matthew Tkachuk for two games for high-sticking Los Angeles Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick on Saturday. Tkachuk jabbed the blade of his stick into the cage on Quick’s mask. The Kings goalie was not injured.
Montreal Canadiens winger Josh Anderson received a two-game suspension for boarding Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alex Pietrangelo on Saturday. Pietrangelo was bleeding from the nose following the hit but stayed in the game.
DAILY FACEOFF: Detroit Red Wings forward Filip Zadina is listed as month-to-month after suffering a leg injury blocking a shot against the New York Islanders on Saturday.
TWINCITIES.COM: The Minnesota Wild placed Jordan Greenway and Ryan Hartman on injured reserve with upper-body injuries. They recalled forwards Adam Beckman and Joseph Cramarossa from their AHL affiliate in Iowa.
COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: Avalanche defenseman Bo Byram is listed as day-to-day with a lower-body injury.
GOPHNX.COM: Dylan Guenther will be staying with the Arizona Coyotes this season. The 2021 first-round pick earned his place with two goals and six points in nine games.
CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Blackhawks’ rebuilding process is being felt at the gate this season. They’re averaging 14, 788 fans at the United Center thus far. That’s the lowest it’s been since 2007-08.
THE DENVER POST: Colorado Avalanche broadcaster and former NHL forward Peter McNab has died of cancer at age 70.
Considered “The Father of Colorado Hockey”, McNab was a standout player at Denver University and went on to play 14 seasons with the Buffalo Sabres, Boston Bruins, Vancouver Canucks and New Jersey Devils from 1973-74 to 1986-87, scoring 363 goals and 813 points in 955 career games. He had been calling Avalanche games since their first season in 1995-96 and was inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame in 2021.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: My condolences to McNab’s family, friends, former teammates and broadcast partners.
RIP to Peter McNab. His dad was a longtime exec of the Devils, Peter finished his career with the Devils and was a great analyst for the Devils before moving to Colorado. My condolences to the family
and shame on the Bruins for not vetting Miller, and shame on the agency for trying to wash over his past. Miller bullied the poor kid for 6 years, no way close to an “isolated incident”
Now Bruins go into your pockets and compensate the victim and the family for the unwanted publicity you brought upon them ….Bruins fan since 1971
Good thing for Neely/Sweeney I’m not the owner of the Bruins these two would be looking for jobs elsewhere…..
Joe, you think the owner didn’t know management was going to sign this guy?
Don’t know but if they did shame in them too
Is it just me, or is the number of injuries higher than average for this part of the season? It certainly seems to me that an injury or two is being reported almost daily.
The woke society is alive and well.
The actions of a 14yr old are viewed as if it was the actions of a 20yr old.
Meanwhile a killer who said he was sorry and showed remorse is ok to work in the NHL.
Are you that naive to not realize the only reason Neely and Sweeney rescinded the offer is because they were instructed by Jacobs to do so.
As you rejoice in your believe victory realize this you are a bully. Not in the same form of Miller but a bully none the less.
And this is the kind of language I’m sure Miller is hearing in his own home this thanksgiving. “How could they do this to you son!?!? The woke mob is canceling you! Just cause you teased some n*#^%*} boy!”
Unfortunately I’m sure the young man is not hearing from those he needs to hear it from… “well. Those are the consequences of your actions. How do you do better moving forward son?”
If Miller’s egregious offense was against a whitey, then this would not have received all this attention. Unfortunately for Miller, his actions have been deemed unforgivable by the woke media who are judge and jury of all such matters.
Yeah society loves it when white disabled people are bullied for years. 🙄
I hate woke. It is 100% BS. reverse bullying. I do not think a person should be cancelled for doing something wrong at 14. But if he has never personally reached out to the family. Shame on him and maybe he is not all that changed as a human being yet. The bigger question to me is where the heck are his parents as i know myself mine would have taken me by the scruff of my neck to his home and sincerely apologize Where was the school when this was going on all the time. Playing hear no evil see no evil shame on both the school and his parents
It’s pretty obvious where the parents stand. He started his racially motivated abuse in early grade school. That stuff was taught at home.
Ya MB4, I’m starting to come around to that as well.
Initially when this came out I made some assumptions that he had done, and was planning to do more, to try and atone for this behavior.
Turns out he hasn’t, and it appears from what we are learning that it was done a week ago when he was trying to get a contract. Even the associations listed by his agent were BS, as the local AZ organization reached out to him to give him the opportunity to work with mentally challenged kids playing hockey. Multiple times. He ignored them, and lists them as an organization he will work with in the future. He hasn’t even spoken to them yet.
He needs to look in the mirror, try to learn what empathy, respect, and personal responsibility are.
And for the folks claiming this is all the “woke” mob and the NHL and Bruins succumbing to it, I think that is misguided. My previous paragraph lists what are conservative principles. When did personal responsibility, respect and empathy become woke? Or at least used to be conservative. Or just basic human decency.
When he earns it, puts in the time to atone for his actions, he will get an opportunity and I will root for him, as obviously this kid needs to get past his upbringing. Won’t be easy.
Johnny, if you actually believe this wouldn’t be happening if the kid he bullied would have been white, you live in a different world than I do. Seriously dude, change whatever channel you are watching. It would be exactly the same.
Well said ray.
Woke? He did it for years. Had years since to apologize and just chose to do so. This isn’t one thing from many years ago. He literally chose not to do anything about it up until a few weeks back. But yeah. Wokeness is the real issue.
“Many years” isn’t just when he was 14. He’s even had many years to apologize since and couldn’t even be bothered until he thought it would help him. That was a couple weeks ago. So no, not a single action of a 14 yr old but an insight into the type of “human” this guy remains. But also “wokeness” bro.
And an indictment of his parents and family, he was taught this type of behavior
Your continued fervent defense of this POS has convinced me to ignore all your future posts.
Hey, if you can lick a used urinal and tell me it’s no big deal then I’d be happy to agree with your point of view.
rip Peter!…a great spokesperson for Colorado hockey!!!…
I’m not saying the kid don’t belong playing in the NHL I’m saying the way the Bruins went about trying to get him here was all wrong …. Don’t know but did they contact Arizona and ask them what they know about Miller ? Did they contact the family or the victim and talk to them about the years of bullying ? was there a police report made out or needed, was this bullying done at school thru the years ? One more tidbit if that was directed towards me I have 0 % woke in me it’s the absolute opposite
3 in a row 👍👍👍
Well needed. Corner turned ????
I believe Kallgren should have been # 1 star…. Some great (and timely) saves….turning away 29 of 30 from the speedy and offensive juggernaut Canes
On a non hockey note….
Congrats to Vancouverites (and all of BC) and those in Habsville for the Lions’ and Als’ wins respectively
Argos/Lions GC would be nice
Yes Pengy, the Leafs so far have the 8th lowest GAA 5 on 5 so far and their PP is somewhere around 27% again. Against two top teams this weekends back to back, they managed no even strength goals against. That’s impressive when you consider key D being out and using your 3rd or 4th string goalies and the teams they beat.
The Leafs even with their “poorly constructed team” seem to look like legit contenders especially when their big forwards start clicking. JT definitely turn a corner and looks like he’s playing like a younger better faster version of himself, so far he’s been much better than expected, again.
For sure talent is there
For sure they were a better team than they had presented
“Contenders”…: sorry, I can’t jump anywhere near that expectation
There was s still a chance that they become a bubble team
As at now; I don’t quite believe they are constructed to take it all
I’d absolutely love to be wrong on that belief/prognostication
It is easy to say you are changed and learned from the events, it is hard to follow through on it. He has shown no “contrition”. This is for me the most baffling. When the story initially broke a couple years ago his parents should have “circled the wagons” and sought to make things right. He seemed to do the right thing when he took a year off; but he never followed through with trying to make things right with the victim. This lack of contrition seems to be the “new information”. A close parallel to me is Logan Mailloux. He showed contrition and even asked not to be drafted. He was drafted, the team weathered criticism; but his contrition made it easier. At this point Mitchell has had years to make amends, the situation is on him (with some blame to the parents)
Sounds like woke cancel culture to me. Mess up in life and pay forever, no second chances allowed. The Bruins caved in to the pressure as I find it hard to believe they did not look closely at Miller. To be clear, I have no idea if Miller deserves a second chance, perhaps he does not but I doubt any of us have all the info that we need to judge him and that includes the majority of people who have criticized his signing…
Bang on Paul
Nope. The guy refused to apologize until he wanted a contract. Nothing “woke” about refusing his lame apology.
Anyone who’s a Matthew Tkachuk fan explain his actions? In case you didn’t see it, while quick was down coving a puck, the rat stuck his blade through the eye hole on quick’s mask then giving it a slight twist as to intentionally poke at his eye. Seriously, WTF do you call that? If I was playing I’d make sure he’d pay for trying to take out my goalie’s eye.
I hope every team takes notice of this and run him every chance they can, you play with the bull, you’ll get the horns.
It’s hard for me to understand how an isolated incident led to a conviction in juvenile court. Lyle, it was mentioned it was ongoing actions. Do you know if this was in fact years? If that I’d the case that is very unfortunate. Bullying in any form should not be accepted. This has terrible lifelong consequences to the victim, and the fact that he has developmental disabilities makes it that much worse.
In his press release, Miller (whether he wrote it, someone else wrote it for him it a collaborative effort) focused on the actions highlighting his age 14 and the eighth grade but did not identify the victim’s disability or extend a profound public apology to him and his family. That press release did not sit well with many people which I assume didn’t help his case.
Having said that. Miller has paid a price of conviction, public admonishment and economic opportunity by not being allowed to play in the NHL at this time.
I hope that he indeed takes this opportunity to learn and teach others the impact of actions such as this. People will forgive. We all make mistakes, this being much bigger than most would do but if he focuses on doing the right thing others will see it.
I think Mitchell had the talent to actually make the nhl one day. But having seen “ the rest of the story”to quote Paul Harvey, there’s no way the bruins could have kept this guy Sweeney and Neely didn’t do their homework on this guy. Obviously they’ll be doing their background checks and little more thoroughly next time around. I can’t stand Bettman but he wants to keep the league or at least try to keep the league free from this kind mess as possible.
This is lengthy and if inappropriate to post in the comments section I apologize Lyle. But seeing people defend this as a cancel culture thing vs what it actually is…. The letter written by the family.
We have been silent as it pertains to you and your family directly. We have been approached by many media entities over the past year or so asking us to give our side of the story. This is something that is very tough for us to deal with as it brings up all the hurt and disgust for what you had done to our son dating back to 1st and 2nd grade. Like when you used to play “Keep the Ball away from Brownie” at recess. Isaiah coming home and asking what a N—er was since you were calling him that. The antics you carried out back then could be dismissed as childish pranks by an unknowing youngster with poor moral upbringing. We pulled Isaiah out of your reach until 6th grade when you walked back into his life. Do you remember having Isaiah sit next to you on the bus, while having your bully accomplice sit behind him, smacking him on the head and punching him from behind? It was reported and nothing done. Do you remember telling him, on one of those occasions, that his BLACK family didn’t love him and that’s why he has a WHITE family? Do you remember spitting in his face and calling him an N word waiting for the bus at school? It was reported and nothing done. Do you remember throwing a snowball in his face and again calling him the N word while waiting for the bus at school? It was reported and nothing was done. You created an environment, because of your “HOCKEY” status, where kids had to do things in order to hang out with you. Isaiah was told, by you, to say before all his peers that he was “your N—a” in order to sit at the lunch table with you, otherwise, he had to sit alone. That was confirmed by other kids in the area. Always belittling him. Knowing he was an easy target because he cognitively was so far behind because of him being born alcohol and drug exposed and having FAS. You knew how much he wanted to “fit in” and have friends so you pried on him.
You picked him up and then slammed him on his back in the snow on the way to Speedway before a basketball game. Again, confirmed by others at the scene. We were notified by the school that in the 8th grade Isaiah began showing up to his 1st period class very agitated and disturbed, only to find out about your morning fight club in the boys bathroom. This is where you, again, used your HOCKEY status to get kids to grab Isaiah as he was heading to his locker and pull him into the bathroom where students would begin fighting with Isaiah as you and your friends Snapchated its entirety so you could play it back and laugh at the abuse YOU were inflicting on him daily. CONFIRMED!! Your parents had been called into the office on a few of these occasions and rather than force you to be held accountable for the things you were doing. They doubled down with you. Stating to the so-called disciplinarians “Do you know how good of a HOCKEY player Mitchell is? Something as stupid as this could RUIN his career!!” “Where is your proof? It’s their word against ours, and Mitchell would never do something like that!!” Those statements are in quotes because those are the exact statements YOUR mom made to us after she found out about YOUR push-pop inconvenience!! That led to criminal charges and a guilty plea on your part because there was a video that we still have and I’m sure many would like to see it so they can decide if it’s just a boy being a boy. You HAD to plead guilty. Your mom referred to it as kids being kids. You were 14 years old and knew what you were doing was wrong. It was so bad that 2 girls went to the principal because they were sick of watching you beat Isaiah up EVERY day and couldn’t watch it any longer. Most responsible parents would have had you come over and apologize and make amends not call my wife to say “Do you know he ran it under water after rubbing it in the urinal before he gave it to Isaiah?” As if somehow that made it less significant. Do you know how humiliating it was for Isaiah to have to get HIV and STD testing because of what you did to him? All of this has been corroborated in the police report as well as the principal telling Isaiah to stay away from you because you weren’t his friend.
In the time since the incident, you claim to have written an apology to us. That apology was court mandated and it was turned into the court, never to us. You claimed to not be able talk to Isaiah because of the court’s restraining order, yet two years later your family tried to get you reinstated back at the same school Isaiah was attending, which would have broke your distance regulations. After that fell through you went to a football game and when you saw Isaiah walking with some friends, you approached Isaiah standing right in his face while talking to the kids he was with. A perfect chance for you to say to Isaiah “Hey I’m really sorry for what I did to you in Junior high. I really hope you can forgive me!!” But you didn’t instead you taunted him until someone from the school came down and sent you on your way. I have seen your parents on a couple of occasions in the community. The perfect chance for them to approach me or my wife and express how deeply sorry they are for what their exceptional HOCKEY playing son did to Isaiah!! Instead they have stared at us with intimidation. They have also created a culture with a group of hockey families in this community, that somehow this is Isaiah’s fault!! That my wife and I are to blame for the issues you have experienced in YOUR life. Yet, you are not the victim here, our son is. You choose what you did over many years to our son. You made that choice! Are you aware of the American Idol 16-year-old young man, Caleb Kennedy, who got kicked off the show for taking a picture with a friend at the age of 12 who was dressed as a KKK. He was 2 years younger than your 14-year-old incident that you keep referring to as you were YOUNG. Because somehow saying you are 14 makes it less impactful. Caleb ONLY had ONE incident and he had consequences for a terrible choice. He was kicked off American Idol and he apologized not downplaying his age. He took ownership, something you still have not done.
You had a couple of years to decide that your HOCKEY career was taking off just as you had hoped and you should make amends with Isaiah before it bites you in the butt. However I’m sure you just thought hey I served my penance and my court case is sealed, that could never come back up and hurt me! I guess you are a cautionary tale that the internet doesn’t forget!! You and your parents at any time could have knocked on our door and humbled yourselves, but you didn’t. After all Isaiah deserved everything you gave him, right!! I mean we have screenshots from “your group” that say Isaiah isn’t a good kid, somehow justifying what you did to him. Posting videos of our son to somehow justify what you did to him. This isn’t remorse.
I’m very sorry that Joni and I decided to foster and adopt kids in SYLVANIA, OHIO! If we hadn’t done that to this community, they might be able to hang a sign on the way into town reading Welcome to Sylvania, Ohio – Home to Mitchell Miller of the NHL!! I would really like sit down with you and Shelly and John and apologize for the INCONVENIENCE my family and CHILD, who by the way is 19 now just like you, has caused you all. It must be devastating waking up everyday not knowing if you will be able to lace up your skates and play the game we love so much.
You see Mitchell you are crushed by the freeze of your HOCKEY career for something that you did as a youngster so long ago. The one-time incident as you reported countless times to all NHL teams and the reporters asking you about it, BUT never thought to send a letter or reach out to YOUR VICTIM who at that time was now 18 (no longer a restraining order). But as I have stated earlier it goes much deeper than the one time you finally got caught on TAPE and Shelly and John couldn’t sweep it under the rug for you. The Inconvenience you spoke about for Isaiah was constant reminders all through school and still to this day, the attacks, the counseling, the depression, the thoughts of suicide, the acts of aggression so that this didn’t happen to him again, the isolation and thoughts that your illusion was true and that it was somehow his fault. What you have done to Isaiah, he will live with for the rest of his life. Questioning his existence. Coach Noreen said his decision didn’t have to do with hockey? Really? He and their organization are part of the problem and not the solution. For the coach to make this statement “We also wanted to make sure that we had the infrastructure for Mitchell himself because as hard as anyone thinks it might be what Mitchell has gone through the last year – and probably what he’s going to go through this year – it is unlike what most young athletes will have to through in their lives.” I would have to agree with some of that because most athletes, actually MOST PEOPLE wouldn’t do what you have done. Your coach is making it out like you are a victim, when in all reality YOU DID THIS! Your coach also referred to it as an off-ice incident. Again, don’t call it what it is because we will minimize what it really is. Our son still has nightmares about the abuse at your hands. I guess inconvenience isn’t really applicable for what Isaiah has gone through now is it. At this point Mitchell, no community service at your best friend’s mom’s school, no diversity training, no feeding homeless people will change what you did! As the magistrate said back then, I don’t think you get it Mitchell. You are sorry for what is happening to you, not for what you did. This also was the consensus of many of the NHL teams, they didn’t see true remorse for your action. More like it was just a minor indiscretion. You just waited too long. Had you taken ownership years ago or even a year ago and your parents not demonized us to OUR community, I would gladly have patted you on the back for a job well done!! Can’t wait to see that sign as I drive into OUR community!! But it took your career crashing through the ice for you to realize that in your own words, “I was unable to reach out to them after the incident, but I think eventually I will definitely reach out and obviously say I’m sorry for all the inconvenience I caused when we were 14 with their family and the child.” When you read it all back and look at it from the other side it’s truly sickening, and the fact that you still can’t fathom the pain and damage you caused by your constant hazing and pranks saddens me deeply!! We will continue to pray that God will convict your heart and your family’s.
A tough yet necessary read.
Thanks Chrisms, this is not inappropriate given the threads here. Powerful words and a necessary read for all who care about hockey and want to improve its lagging culture. Mitchell should never be allowed to play in the NHL or anywhere professionally. His second chance should be as a volunteer with an anti-bullying organization like noplaceforhate.com.
Thanks for sharing Chrisms
This was an extremely difficult read….can’t imagine living it
Prior to this read I had thought it was a single (brutal. But single event)
Heart goes out to Isaiah
Mitchell is a free man, he can do as he pleases but he absolutely should not have the right to be in a position that makes him a role model for other kids.
Hockey has issues, if they don’t fix these things at the base level then these practices will continue. It’s not ‘woke’ to feel for the victim, he has to live with that his entire life as do his parents. Feeling powerless as a parent when you child is abused is a fate I don’t even wish on my worst enemy.
Much respect for the Bruins on ice leaders for having the courage to speak against the signing.
I havent’ followed this Miller kid and his story so was surprised to find an uproar over signing an adult for what they did as a teenager in 8th grade. I am also surprised he did nothing to try and garner “browny” points so thanks Lyle for pointing that out and that it wasn’t an isolated bullying incident.
Now I’m wondering who is giving this kid advice and how thick is his skull to not do anything. I understand he never personally apologized to his victims as well and surely the Boston management had to of known that htey would be asked why they thought he has bettered himself and what actions they know of that he has taken to show that growth and take ownership of his wrong.
Like I tell my kids. Sometimes Sorry doesn’t cut it.