NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 5, 2023

by | Feb 5, 2023 | News, NHL | 14 comments

Matthew Tkachuk named MVP as Atlantic Division wins 2023 All-Star Game plus the latest on David Pastrnak, Sean Couturier, Robin Lehner and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NHL.COM: The Atlantic Division defeated the Central Division 7-5 to win the 2023 NHL All-Star Game with Detroit Red Wings center Dylan Larkin tallying a hat trick. Florida Panthers winger Matthew Tkachuk was named tournament MVP.

Florida Panthers winger Matthew Tkachuk (NHL Images)

The NHL announced the 2024 All-Star Game will be held in Toronto.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: David Pastrnak remains unconcerned that he hasn’t signed a contract extension with the Bruins. He told reporters on Friday that his agent and Bruins general manager Don Sweeney talk every day and insisted there was no rush to get a deal done.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Pastrnak is slated to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. While I understand why some Bruins followers may be nervous over his current contract situation I don’t believe they need to worry.

Pastrnak loves being a Bruin and they want to re-sign him. He’ll get the maximum eight-year contract. The only question is how much it’ll cost. Based on his performance, it will likely be over $11 million annually.

PHILLY HOCKEY NOW: Flyers GM Chuck Fletcher said there’s a possibility Sean Couturier could return to action before the end of this season. Couturier, 30, underwent a second back surgery last October. Fletcher said Couturier has resumed skating and is working out.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flyers aren’t going to rush Couturier. Fletcher said they’re taking the long view with his recovery.

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Bankruptcy documents filed last week by Golden Knights goaltender Robin Lehner and his wife, Donya, reveal they owe creditors $27.3 million against personal property of $5.1 million.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: The Capitals signed winger Sonny Milano to a three-year contract extension worth $1.9 million per season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Capitals are using the All-Star weekend to take care of business as they also re-sign Dylan Strome on Friday to a five-year deal. Like Strome, Milano has found a home with the Capitals after struggling to prove his worth with previous clubs. With 22 points in 40 games, the 26-year-old winger could exceed his career high of 34 points in 2021-22 with the Anaheim Ducks.

DETROIT HOCKEY NOW: The Red Wings placed forward Adam Erne on waivers yesterday. If he clears by noon ET today, he’ll be sent to their AHL affiliate in Grand Rapids to make room for Jonatan Berggren.

SPORTSNET: NHL commissioner Gary Bettman spoke to reporters before the All-Star Game yesterday. He said that the league has no plans to change its playoff format.

OTTAWA SUN: Bettman also confirmed that potential buyers for the Ottawa Senators will submit their bids soon. He indicated more than 15 groups have expressed an interest in purchasing the franchise.

I want to be very clear, whoever buys this club is doing so to keep it in Ottawa,” said Bettman. “I say that so there is no speculation on the point.”

DAILY FACEOFF: Bettman said hockey-related revenue for 2022-23 could reach $6 billion “give or take”. It was around $5.4 million last season.

The commissioner also dismissed concerns over a recent report indicating US television ratings were down by 22 percent compared to last season. “Let’s not get too carried away with ratings,” said Bettman. “Viewership is up nationally.” He anticipates ratings will rise once the NFL season ends.

Deputy commissioner Bill Daly claimed viewership was up 27 percent “across the board”. He also said the league will be showcasing games on ABC.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Bettman did say the league is monitoring the financial struggles of the Bally Sports regional sports networks and exploring options in case the worst were to happen. Daly said the Bally situation “may not necessarily result in bankruptcy.”

THE ATHLETIC: Bettman said the league must respect individual choice if players decide not to take part in events such as Pride Night. “You know what our goals, our values and our intentions are across the league, whether it’s at the league level or at the club level,” he said. “But we also have to respect some individual choice. And part of being diverse and welcoming is understanding those differences.”

NHL.COM: The Florida Panthers have offered Canadian women’s hockey star Sarah Nurse a job at the club’s future practice and community rinks at FTL War Memorial. They want her to be the face of the Panthers’ girls’ hockey program.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It sounds like the two sides will be negotiating a deal.

THE PROVINCE: Hundreds of mourners filled the Musqueam Indian Band community centre on Saturday to celebrate the life of Gino Odjick. The former Vancouver Canucks forward died on Jan. 15 of a heart attack at age 52.


  1. Good for Nurse. The Bruins should hire Botterill. Sharp hockey mind.

    • She has a better gig.

    • Sop, she certainly does. She’s level headed with her pov and has shown more of lighter side as she grown into her role.

      Lyle im not worried about the Pastrnak signing, i’m more concern about the dollar amount.

  2. The Nurse family has interesting blood lines

    I was listening to Kia Nurse recently , commentating on NBA’s upcoming trade deadline , very knowledgeable , well spoken , not to mention her athletic talent

    Sarah , Darnell , Kia are all cousins !

    • Actually Ken, Darnell and Kia are brother and sister. Their father, Richard Nurse, played in the CFL. Sarah is their cousin. Donovan McNabb, former NFL QB, is an uncle to all of them. Quite the bloodlines indeed.

  3. Hi Howard

    Thankyou !

    Again, Interesting to Know …

  4. well I give kudo’s to the Commish’s handling of a reporter who would not leave the pride night alone. He is right if you are going to be inclusive, you have to accept even those that do not want follow all of your ideas.
    As for Daly saying viewership is up he needs to open both eyes, numbers are down. why can’t stand the watching these clowns trip over themselves for some rightness moment of the week.

    • Agree – recently got Rogers Ignite only to discover that one of their annoying “features” is to interrupt what you’re watching if you haven’t changed the channel in a while with a “are you still there? Why not try ^&*%$ (whatever)”

      Last night I happened to be watching a movie when that popped up asking if I knew the All-Star Game was on. Scrape up viewers as and where you can, I guess.

      The REALLY annoying part is, it’s a “feature” you can’t opt out of.

    • Bob uncle, (I actually do have an uncle Bob), I think what Daly was saying is that the recent story about average viewership per game was down in the USA, they are up overall.

      The reason is they have doubled the amount of games that are being broadcast in the USA.

      Or at least that is how I remember the reporting.

      Ya George, all these different options available for streaming or whatever is pretty annoying.
      Many of them are just meh.
      While there is more to watch, it is also more fragmented. Too much so IMO, as each one has something good, but not enough to warrant subscribing.

      I don’t know what all the #’s are, but I can’t see all these companies surviving, which often leads to consolidation.

  5. I found the game between East and West mascots more entertaining than the actual All-Star Game and skills competition.
    Harvey the Hound threw an excellent textbook hip check against Youppi. Blades and Gritty showed excellent chemistry with several unselfish plays resulting in goals.
    Carlton seriously outplayed Wild Wing in net, which wasn’t hard as the duck spent most of his time in the corner hamming it up for the kids. Carolinas mascot Stormy scored a beautiful tally from his belly which shows he’s been paying attention to Rod in practice.
    I’ll watch it again next year. Great show for the youngsters overall.

    • I missed that SOP, will have to tune in next year!

      • Won’t you be coming to Toronto for that weekend, Ray?

      • Haha, likely BCLeafFan.

  6. The NHL does a lot to hurt its TV rating numbers like putting games on vs the NFL like last weekends DIV playoff games or on Saturday-day games during college football season. Football is king of TV by a mile so it’s just being little smarter about the schedule as their is no sense in competing for a time slot when you can own the weekday time slots and some weekend night game times, also matinee games probably have a big dip especially during warmer weather as people are not typically home 12-5pm on the weekends…It’s not the same as it was back in the day.