NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 29, 2023

by | Jan 29, 2023 | News, NHL | 22 comments

The Lightning set a franchise record, the Panthers rally to upset the Bruins, the Oilers’ emergency backup gets to live the dream, reaction to the Rangers’ reversal on Pride Night warmup jerseys and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: The Tampa Bay Lightning picked up a franchise-record 12th consecutive home win by downing the Los Angeles Kings 5-2. Steven Stamkos collected an assist to extend his points streak to 11 games while Nick Perbix collected three assists as the Lightning (32-15-1) moves to within three points of the second-place Toronto Maple Leafs in the Atlantic Division with 65 points. The Kings (28-18-6) sit in third place in the Pacific Division with 62 points.

An overtime goal by Sam Reinhart lifted the Florida Panthers to a 4-3 upset of the Boston Bruins. Aleksander Barkov tied the game with three seconds remaining in the third period just 46 seconds after David Pastrnak gave the Bruins the lead. Barkov finished the game with three points while Alex Lyon stopped 38 shots for the 24-22-6 Panthers, who sit three points behind the Pittsburgh Penguins for the final Eastern Conference playoff berth with 54 points. The Bruins (38-6-5) remain atop the overall standings with 81 points.

The Edmonton Oilers got three-point performances from Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Zach Hyman and Darnell Nurse to thump the Chicago Blackhawks 7-3. Tyson Barrie also scored twice for the Oilers (28-18-4), who hold the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference with 60 points. Patrick Kane collected two assists for the Blackhawks, who slipped to 15-29-4.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: University of Alberta goaltender Matt Berlin was the Oilers’ emergency backup with Stuart Skinner feeling under the weather. He got to live the NHL dream when he replaced Jack Campbell for the final 2:26 in the game and the Oilers leading 7-3, making one save in his appearance.

San Jose Sharks captain Logan Couture (NHL Images)

Oilers winger Evander Kane returned to the lineup after being in San Jose during the week dealing with his bankruptcy case.

San Jose Sharks captain Logan Couture scored twice and collected three assists in a 6-4 upset of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Alexander Barbashev had a goal and two assists for the 15-25-11 Sharks. Evgeni Malkin tallied two goals and picked up an assist for the Penguins, who dropped to 24-16-9 as they cling to the final Eastern wild-card spot with 57 points.

The Minnesota Wild snapped the Buffalo Sabres’ five-game win streak with a 3-2 victory on a shootout goal by Frederick Gaudreau. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 29 shots for the Wild (27-17-4) as they sit in third place in the Central Division with 58 points. Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen turned aside 33 shots for the 26-19-4 Sabres as they moved to within one point of the Penguins.

Colorado Avalanche netminder Alexandar Georgiev made 26 saves as his club doubled up the St. Louis Blues by a score of 4-2. Logan O’Connor collected two assists for the 27-18-3 Avalanche, who’ve won seven of their last eight games and hold the final Western Conference wild-card berth with 57 points. The Blues dropped to 23-24-3 as they’ve lost four straight and sit eight points behind the Avalanche.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Avalanche and Flames each have 57 points but the Avs hold two games in hand over the idle Flames.

The Seattle Kraken (29-15-5) hold first place in the Pacific Division with 63 points following a 3-1 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets. Alex Wennberg scored in his 600th career game while Eeli Tolvonan scored for the third straight game. Kent Johnson replied for the Jackets as they dropped to 15-32-3.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Earlier in the day, the Blue Jackets claimed forward Lane Pederson off waivers from the Vancouver Canucks and placed winger Gustav Nyquist (upper body) on injured reserve.

An overtime goal by Mathew Barzal gave the New York Islanders a 2-1 win over the Vegas Golden Knights. Semyon Varlamov kicked out 44 shots for the Isles as they improved to 25-22-5 and moved within two points behind the Penguins with 55 points. Logan Thompson stopped 33 shots for the Golden Knights (29-18-4) as they dropped one point behind the Kraken in the Pacific Division.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Golden Knights are mired in a slump right now with a record of 2-6-2 in their last 10 contests.

Philadelphia Flyers goalie Carter Hart made 40 saves to shut out the Winnipeg Jets 4-0. Noah Cates and Owen Tippett each had a goal and an assist for the Flyers (21-21-9) as they sit six back of the Penguins with 51 points. The Jets (31-19-1) are tied in points with the Kraken (63) but the latter holds second overall in the Western Conference with two games in hand.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Earlier in the day, the Flyers announced winger Zack MacEwen will be sidelined for five weeks following surgery to repair a fractured jaw. Meanwhile, Jets defenseman Dylan DeMelo missed this game with a lower-body injury and will be sidelined for their next game as well.

Speaking of shutouts, the Ottawa Senators’ Anton Forsberg stopped 28 shots to blank the Montreal Canadiens by a score of 5-0. Claude Giroux tallied twice and picked up an assist for the 23-23-3 Senators, who sit eight points out of wild-card contention with 49 points. The Canadiens fell to 20-26-4 on the season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Canadiens prospect Owen Beck made his NHL debut on an emergency call-up basis and was returned to his OHL team following this game.

Anaheim Ducks center Trevor Zegras scored in overtime in a 2-1 win over the Arizona Coyotes. The Ducks improved to 16-29-5. Connor Ingram made 43 saves for the 16-28-6 Coyotes.


NEW YORK POST: The Rangers are facing criticism over the club’s decision not to wear rainbow jerseys or tape during warm-ups as promoted prior to Friday’s game against the Vegas Golden Knights as part of their scheduled Pride Night. Two Rangers players told the Post that there was no team discussion over the decision and they don’t know why they didn’t wear them, prompting speculation that the choice was made higher up in the organization.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The decision came over a week after Philadelphia Flyers defenseman Ivan Provorov opted not to wear a rainbow jersey during warm-ups as part of his club’s Pride Night game.

It appears the Rangers ownership may have been rattled by the fallout from Provorov’s actions. Maybe they were afraid of one of their own players doing the same thing. If they felt it would help them avoid a backlash, they were wrong.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: Capitals winger Tom Wilson remains day-to-day with a lower-body injury and will miss the club’s next two games before the upcoming All-Star break.

DAILY FACEOFF: Toronto Maple Leafs goaltender Matt Murray is dealing with an ankle injury and will be undergoing further tests to determine its severity. Murray missed his scheduled start on Friday against the Ottawa Senators.


  1. As per Murray

    How many GM’s in the league would trade for Murray , knowing his past “glass man” history !

    Woll, with the Marlies is having his best year . His 13-1 – maybe they will bring him up .

    Reason ——-I like Pengy ‘s idea to stand pat , evaluate the team and management after this season, prior to playoff time .

    • Unfortunately Ken, you and I are in the extreme minority

      Dubas’ job is on the line… if he stands pat (no futures for UFAs; pseudo standing pat…..only trade(s) is/are for player(s) with term) and miraculously gets by Bolts and Bruins…. He’d be praised

      However, my biggest fear is that he believes he has to go full tilt Texas Hold’m “all-in”; tosses futures like necklace beads at Mardis Gras….into the wind; and Bolts still best the Leafs…. season over; nothing to show; no assets to look forward to down the road

      That automatically gets him fired…. Maybe the coach and maybe Shanny as well…. But leaves the futures cupboard bare; Leafs still with basically 1/2 Cap on 4 Fwds; a demoralized fan-base; and star player with diminishing incentive to extend beyond 30/6/24; and a parade drought still 56 years and counting

      I hope I am wrong

      • You are.

        It’s simply because you think it’s a pretty easy task at keeping a team in the top 5ish for an 82 game season year after year. That in only 6 years since drafting their franchise player, whom let’s not forget how you “believe” he’ll bolt to sign in Arizona once he’s UFA which he never ever said or alluded to anything like that at all, a team where you “can’t see how” they could add or become cap compliant but year after year they do while maintaining their stats of one of the best teams.

        Yes the playoffs are different but again, like you say, with Boston being who they are this year and Tampa being Tampa, it’s only fortunate that Florida dropped the bag this year but otherwise you’d also mention how the Leafs won’t be able to pass either one in the first round.

        So your solution is to can everyone. Everyone that is involved with the construction of the team. Makes sense I guess when I lay it all out, right?

      • Oh it’s Pengy saying it’s never the time for the Leafs too win come on Pengy come up with something new it’s becoming very old.

      • Hi MOTV

        No challenge at all to the Leaf passion you; and many others on here , have. None

        I have posted before and will again here…. I think Leafs have a great opportunity this summer for moves resulting in a very fair shot at getting to the SCF in June of ‘24

        I also posted (before the season [so before the Bruin’s huge rise] ) that Leafs chances in ‘23 (to get to SCF) lay with going through Bolts…. Not a given; but certainly not far-fetched in chances

        The now double-whammy of having to get past Bolts; then pull of a miracle series win over this very dominant 22/23 Bruins squad (and that’s just to get to the ECF to meet [likely]the Canes);has dramatically changed my success projections (and hopes) for Leafs this year

        Can it ( Leafs’ SC) happen this June… I’m hoping and praying it can; I just can’t logically bet on it regardless of odds given

        That in no way diminishes my passion as a Leafs fan. Been s Leafs fan for over 5 1/2 decades.

        Just my logic dominating my heart when it comes to my thoughts on what will happen this spring

  2. McD… sick again… ho hum 3 points; beauty give ‘n go McD/Leon

    Love After Hours interview with big Vinnie👍👍

    Great move by Oil letting the UofA EBUG actually be the formal hack-up AND let him play a couple of minutes👍👍

    Good to see E Kane get a goal

    Murray and ankle injury? Strange…. Took warm up, seemed fine then decided no go??

    Sens…. Came out energized again…. I’m sure Sens fans were loving that

    Thank you thank you thank you for 2 posts and out (instead of either going post and in) in St. Paul…. either go in…. Pens sitting outside a playoff spot this morning

    Krakken maintain their surprise season…. Just looked on CapFreindly… now that’s a balanced cap hit team!!!!…top Cap hit $5.9 M; basically 1/2 the 23 man roster (11) have Cap hits between $4M and $5.9M ; and 4 more between $3M and $3.9 M

    Will be interesting to see if Francis lets the team grow naturally (no major futures for UFAs) or if he does major moves???

    • Hi Pengy,
      yes it was a Great interview with the Oilers Big New d/man Vinny Desharnais its quite the story how he got hear to the NHL.
      Loue de brusk keep saing he is 6ft7… the other guy says 6ft6 …. and that Sick was Huge he has….🤔
      He has legs like “Tree Trunks”
      Its no wonder he never get knocked over…❗️😂

      A Great PR move by the Oilers to put the Alberta Golden Bears Goaltender Matt Berlin the Oilers’ emergency backup with Stuart Skinner feeling Sick in last night for the final 2.5 minutes he got a standing O….
      I dont know if you notiicded but the coaching staff ask McDavid if the should put him in….❓ Connor said yes we should put him in …thumbs up with all the coaches it a go….. Put him in….

      Very Classy move all round by the Oilers.👌

      • Yes did notice the coach lean over to ask McD

        Yes classy move

        #1 son said posts on media this morning (Spittin’ Chicklets et al) are alluding to the whole suggestion (putting the EBUG in the game) was made pre game by McD…, with the codicils of course (1) that Campbell was not in a shutout possibility; (2) that it was late in the game; and (3) Oil would have to be in a secure enough position (score) to already basically have the win… and what we saw (Coach asking McD live on bench) was basically reconfirming previous suggestion ; AND when specifically to actually make the switch

        Regardless of who actually decided…. Great move

    • Pengy, re “Murray and ankle injury? Strange…. Took warm up, seemed fine then decided no go??”

      That’s what I meant with my “How the Hell does an ankle injury “flare up” during a pre-game warm-up? ”

      I mean, if he had previously suffered some sort of injury to an ankle you might think that that would have been monitored quite closely before he was ticketed to start against Ottawa, and so led to some sort of treatment that almost assuredly would have been picked up on by the media.

      But no, he supposedly worked out with the team the day before the game, tabbed to go, and seemed fine during the pre-game skate. What, did he “twist” it walking from the dressing room to the ice for the start of the game?

      And if it was bad enough that he couldn’t possibly play in the game, what was he doing on the bench for the duration of the game? Had Samsonov gone down, would he have been able to step in? If so, why couldn’t he start? If not, why not dress some emergency replacement (like a Zamboni driver?)

      I don’t think the Marlies were playing anywhere so why not dress Woll?

      I doubt any of us would be picking this apart if any other goalie was involved. But this has been a repeated occurrence with him for the past 3/4 years.

      • George, Marlies are in Winnipeg (Boat Show in Toronto). Woll will be called up at some point but not sure what the Leafs will do today. The Marlies have three goalies with them on their road trip.
        Woll backing up Samsonov against Boston on Tuesday is the most likely scenario.
        Aside to Ron Moore, agree completely on your comments. Pengy makes a much better Penguins fan imo. He should just move on over to Pittsburgh permanently. His common sense disappears when he’s talking about the Leafs.

      • Yes strange George

        When Murray is on point… he is good

        When he is off point…. He can have very rough patches

        Then there are the injury gaps

        Overall this inconsistency (regardless of why) in the starter; is somewhat desconcerting

        That said; Samsonov has been pretty fair …. 12th in save %’age (of goalies appearing in 20 of more games)

        Not worried at all re Leafs in reg season…. 4th in East (winning percentage); 0.003 up on Bolts; so could keep very tight 2nd/3rd Atl

        I think there is no first round match-up in the entire NHL that as at now; has a higher probability of happening than Leafs v Bolts (can’t at all fathom Sabres or Cats catching 3rd in Atl; hard to fathom Bruins falling out of 1st)

        Realistically ; what is the more unknown, is who (Leafs or Bolts) get home ice round 1)

        Both will have confidence that after they battle it out…. It will mean the winner likely limps to Bruinville to likely play a rested (4-0 ? 4-1? First round) Bruin squad

        Can the above turn out to not happen… yes upsets happen…. I’m just not betting on it

      • Usually when an upset occurs in a series where a heavily favoured team is knocked out, you can almost always trace it back to a goalie being the single biggest factor. Do any of the expected lower qualifiers have a goalie able to rise to those levels?

        After watching Samsonov the other night against Ottawa I see nothing there that would give me such hope if I were a leafs fan. He is, as you say, OK. And while Murray can show such dominance here and there, his lack of consistency in doing so – not to mention his chronic unreliability – would tell me not to bet the farm on the Leafs going deep.

  3. Watched the late nite Oilers game last night
    Easy win for the oil, 7-3 over the Hawks

    intresting game last night as the Oilers have been looking at 3-4 of the Hawks…. if the do a deal 1 or 2 could come hear… They have been Looking at
    d/man McCabe,
    RW/C Sam Lafferty
    RW Taylor Raddish
    Captain Jonathan Toews

    An other Solid performance from the Oiler d, Tyson Barrie looked like a Snipper last night….🤔
    however the team looked like the took there foot of the gas in the 3rd period and let the hawks get 2 easy goals❗️
    It was an other Great performance for 97 & 29 with a couple of Crazzy Fast Rushes from 97 again last night both teams watching him… funny👀
    But Zack Hyman was the star of the game last night worked very hard all night 1G & 2A….👍

  4. Rangers advertised that they would wear the jerseys, so hopefully there’s a class action lawsuit against them brewing.

    • Jeez..let it go and leave people alone. We’re free to believe what we believe.. you have your freedom, right?

      • What are you talking about? They advertised that players would wear the jerseys and then they didn’t, it’s a bait and switch. I’d say the same thing if they did this on Veterans night or Cancer night, it’s false advertising and a con.

  5. I stand with the Rangers decision. Not because I’m a Rangers fan, but a fan of this amazing game! All this pride political bs should not be part of this sport or any sport. Leave people the freedom to believe in what they believe in. Period.

    • So cancel Cancer Awareness night and Veterans night and First Responders night too?

      • Brock, without either agreeing or disagreeing with his stance, there is a difference between the elements of society you mention and the one in question, Those you list all provide a needed service (or have done in the case of veterans) to aspects of the population.

        I suppose what he is saying is, if we’re to single out that aspect of society for special recognition, why not Black History Day (maybe that one has been honoured – can’t recall) or something to recognize Indiginous Rights or Holocaust Day? But that raises the questions “where does the NHL draw the line?” or “should they draw the line?” I don’t know.

      • Yes please and no anthems too. None of this has much to do why we watch but rather a chance use or exploit the popularity and reach the sport has to bring awareness or a voice to the otherwise without one. That’s all it is and again not anything to do with the sport, teams or players. Bad decisions will always be called out.

    • JC, interesting you say people should be able to believe what they want but the Rags shouldn’t have a pride night. So everybody but the Rags should be able to? Sounds like free speech me but not for thee is your position.

      Being gay or not is only political by those that want to make it political.

      If the Rags want to have a pride night go ahead. If they don’t want to, don’t. Last time I checked the USA is a free country so people and business can say and promote whatever they want.

      If you don’t like free speech move to an autocratic country.