NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 11, 2023

by | Apr 11, 2023 | News, NHL | 23 comments

The Sharks’ Erik Karlsson reaches the 100-point milestone, the Flames are eliminated from playoff contention, the Stars’ Joe Pavelski and the Senators’ Claude Giroux reach 1,000 career points, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: The San Jose Sharks’ Erik Karlsson became the first defenseman in 31 years to net 100 points in a season in a 6-2 loss to the Winnipeg Jets. Karlsson scored twice to reach the milestone last achieved by Brian Leetch in 1991-92. Meanwhile, Jets blueliner Josh Morrisey had a goal and two assists as his club moved closer to clinching the final Western Conference wild-card spot with 93 points.

San Jose Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The 32-year-old Karlsson is only the sixth NHL defenseman to reach the 100-point plateau and the oldest to do so. He’s considered the front-runner to win the Norris Trophy. Meanwhile, the Sharks revealed that Marc-Edouard Vlasic, Alexander Barabanov, Andreas Johnsson and Oskar Lindblom are out with season-ending injuries.

Shootout goals by Cody Glass and Tommy Novak lifted the Nashville Predators to a 3-2 win over the Calgary Flames, officially eliminating the latter from playoff contention. Juuse Saros made 44 saves in regulation and overtime for the 41-31-8 Predators, who kept their slim playoff hopes alive with 90 points. Jacob Markstrom stopped 27 shots for the Flames (37-27-17) as they sit one point ahead of the Predators and two back of the Jets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Predators and Jets have two games remaining while the Flames have only one. The Jets can clinch that wild-card spot with a win tonight over the Minnesota Wild.

The New York Islanders’ chances of securing a wild-card spot got slimmer as they were upset 5-2 by the Washington Capitals. Dylan Strome tallied twice and Darcy Kuemper stopped 38 shots for the Capitals while Hudson Fasching and Casey Cizikas replied for the 41-31-9 Islanders as they held the final Eastern wild-card berth with 91 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Islanders sit one game up on the Pittsburgh Penguins, who hold a game in hand and now control their own fate. Speaking of the Isles, center Bo Horvat said his recent comments praising the fan support his club is receiving weren’t meant as a slight against the Vancouver Canucks or their fans. Horvat was the Canucks’ captain until traded to the Islanders in January.

Meanwhile, the Capitals announced winger T.J. Oshie had been shut down for the remainder of the season with an upper-body injury.

An overtime goal by John Tavares gave the Toronto Maple Leafs a 2-1 victory over the Florida Panthers. Auston Matthews netted his 40th goal of the season for the Leafs as they sit second in the Atlantic Division with 107 points. Brandon Montour replied for the 42-31-8 Panthers (92 points) as they failed to clinch the first Eastern Conference wild-card berth.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Panthers have one game remaining in their schedule. They could still be overtaken by the Islanders or Penguins.

Matthews set two Leafs records with the most consecutive 40-goal seasons (four) and the most in franchise history with five. Things also got interesting for the Leafs in goal as they were forced to bring in an emergency backup on an amateur tryout contract when they were denied a goaltending salary-cap exemption. It’s believed this may have been an emergency of their own making by signing prospect forward Matthew Knies to his three-year entry-level contract over the weekend.

Speaking of the Eastern wild card race, the Buffalo Sabres kept their playoff hopes alive by nipping the New York Rangers 3-2 on a shootout goal by Casey Mittelstadt, who also tied the game in the third period. Devon Levi made 26 saves to pick up his fourth win in five games for the 40-32-7 Sabres (87 points) as they sit four points behind the Islanders with three games remaining in their schedule.

Dallas Stars winger Joe Pavelski scored to reach the 1,000-point plateau as his club dropped the Detroit Red Wings 6-1. Jason Robertson had a goal and two assists as the Stars sit in second place in the Central Divison with 104 points. David Perron replied for the Red Wings.

Ottawa Senators forward Claude Giroux also reached 1,000 career points with two goals and an assist in a 3-2 upset of the Carolina Hurricanes. Martin Necas collected two assists for the Hurricanes (109 points) as they remain one point ahead of the New Jersey Devils in first place in the Metropolitan Division.

The Los Angeles Kings blanked the Vancouver Canucks 3-0 on a 20-save shutout by Joonas Korpisalo. Arthur Kaliyev, Vladislav Gavrikov and Drew Doughty scored for the Kings, who sit third in the Pacific Division with 102 points. Collin Delia stopped 25 shots for the Canucks.

Two third-period goals by Marcus Johansson gave the Minnesota Wild a 4-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks. Filip Gustavsson kicked out 40 shots for the Wild as they’re sitting third in the Central with 102 points. Joey Anderson and Anders Bjork replied for the Blackhawks.

The Seattle Kraken picked up their fifth straight win by beating the Arizona Coyotes 4-1. Jared McCann and Justin Schultz each had a goal and an assist for the Kraken as they reached the 100-point plateau for the first time in franchise history and hold the first Western wild-card spot. Jack McBain scored for the Coyotes.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Speaking of the Kraken, they signed prospect David Goyette on Monday to a three-year entry-level contract. He’s been assigned to their AHL affiliate in Coachella Valley along with center Shane Wright, whose junior season recently ended when his Windsor Spitfires were eliminated from the opening round of the 2023 OHL playoffs.


NHL.COM: Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon, Seattle Kraken winger Jordan Eberle, and Florida Panthers goaltender Alex Lyon are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending April 9.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: The Professional Hockey Writers Association unveiled each team’s nominees for the 2023 Bill Masterton Trophy. They included Dallas Stars winger Jamie Benn, New Jersey Devils defenseman Dougie Hamilton, New York Islanders winger Zach Parise, Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Kris Letang, Toronto Maple Leafs blueliner Mark Giordano, Vancouver Canucks winger Brock Boeser, Vegas Golden Knights winger Phil Kessel and Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlsson are among the notable players nominated for this award.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Click the link above for the full list, which will be whittled down to three finalists and will be handed out during the 2023 NHL Awards on June 26 in Nashville.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning winger Tanner Jeannot (injured leg) is expected to miss the early part of his club’s opening-round series against the Maple Leafs next week. However, he could return to action at some point in that series.

NHL.COM: Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Strome was fined $5,000.00 by the department of player safety for unsportsmanlike conduct during his club’s overtime loss to the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday.

SEATTLE HOCKEY INSIDER: The Kraken signed prospect David Goyette on Monday to a three-year entry-level contract. He’s been assigned to their AHL affiliate in Coachella Valley along with center Shane Wright, whose junior season recently ended when his Windsor Spitfires were eliminated from the opening round of the 2023 OHL playoffs.


  1. Another “notable” Masterton nominee is Senators’ Derick Brassard

    • So Tavares nets OT winner to keep Isles playoff hopes alive. NYI have one game remaining vs Habs…. Who hold Panthers 1st round pick. Hmmmm. Do Panthers clinch spot if Pittsburgh loses tonight in regulation?

      • Hi Slick

        I’m certainly hoping for a Pens win tonight

        Re Panthers clinching tonight…. No… can’t clinch with just a potential Pens loss in reg; there is still the Sabres game…. Sabres can (as at now) still finish ahead of Cats

  2. All very deserving nominees, some great comeback stories. My vote would have to go to Letang.

    • Mine as well…. Not because he’s a Pen; but because of being most deserving of the award this year

  3. So, “Canada’s Hopes” for a Stanley Cup winner for the first time since 1993 rests with Toronto and Edmonton … and maybe the inconsistent Jets.

    Winnipeg has 93 points and can only be caught now by Nashville – 3 points back and each with 2 games remaining.

    Funny thing is, they face the same opponents with Winnipeg at Minnesota tonight then home to Colorado on Thursday, while Nashville is home to Minnesota on Thursday and home to Colorado on Friday – both they and Colorado closing on a back-to-back.

    • Leafs and Oil both have a realistic shot though.
      A Toronto vs. Edmonton final? We are allowed to dream right?

      • Heh. That would be one for the books Taz, especially as it hasn’t happened since 1989 when Calgary beat Montreal in the finals. That’s 34 blinking years!

        I think this is the year the Leafs get past that 1st round whammy by beating out Tampa Bay, likely in 6, while it looks like the Oilers and Kings in round one. That one could go 7 – to hard to choose.

  4. Bit of a first in that Senators line-up last night as all four picks since 2018 from the University Of North Dakota were dressed – 3 of them D

    Jacob Bernard-Docker – RD 6′ 0″ 190 lbs – 1st round – 26th overall – 2018

    Shane Pinto – C 6′ 2″ 192 lbs – 2nd round 32nd overall 2019

    Jake Sanderson – LD 6′ 2″ 185lbs – 1st Round 5th overall 2020

    Tyler Kleven – LD 6′ 4″ 200lbs – 2nd Round 44th overall 2020


  5. Chicago is a team to watch the next 2 off-season’s. A surplus of Draft Picks and 43+ million in cap space heading into this summer. You look two years out and Chicago could be a massive player for Austin Matthews in the summer of 2024. Sitting in the top with their prospect pool and in position to add to that prospect pool at this years draft. As a Blues fan hate to say it, but Chicago is in a solid position moving forward.

    • They pale in comparison to the draft currency some other teams have.
      Given how they gave away their assets over the last year, and in the case of Kubalik and Strome literally gave away, I wouldn’t fear too much about this management turning things around within 2 years.

      Chicago is a mess and if Auston is leaving he would have a choice of landing spot, I highly doubt Chicago will be anywhere near top of the list for him.

      • I would disagree with that. There might be 2-3 other Teams, including AZ, that have the draft Capital that Chicago has built up. They will have moved out nearly all their dead cap and will have a massive amount of cap to work with this summer and next summer. Along with a host of young players who are years away from being UFA’s. They have one of the top 10 prospect pools in the league, and would be able to put up a massive offer to Matthew’s or any other UFA for that matter. With the cap expected to go up to nearly 88 million next summer, Mathews is going to get paid! Nate Mac just got a contract at 16.7% of the Cap. If Matthews hits the open market he is going to see a similar percentage. It wouldnt be crazy to think Matthews goes on a Tour like Tavares did, and meet with several Teams. Dude is going to get 7 years at 15+ million AAV.

    • Austin Matthews is going to sign in Arizona. Haven’t you heard?

      • If Leafs go out first round….I’m thinking Krakken have an excellent shot of landing UFA Mathews in 15 months

        No state Tax

        Team probably ready (in24/25) to potentially get to WCF

        As at now…. no Captain for the Krakken

        $100 M , 7 years for Krakken… $14.3 M per

        To match takehome…. Leafs need to offer 8 @ $17 M… AND AM has to play the extra year just to match; with Krakken he could re-up (extend contract) after 6 years (when he would still be 32 years old then)

      • I Highly doubt it with everything that’s going on down there. I think they’ll be in a new city in 2025, all depends on that law suit. What a strange way it would be to be aible to pay for their new arena by winning. Would be one of their rare but greatest wins.

  6. Congrats Erik; Claude; and Little Joe on your milestones

    • The are celebrating at a law enforcement themed chipendales.

  7. Parros

    Fining for unsportsmanlike play and embellishment (last week) while continuing to ignore headshots and full force ploughed from behind into the boards, is going to lead to ending someone’s career (or life)

    Player Safety…. Sound familiar? It’s not only in your job title; it’s in your mandate

    Gary…. Fire Parros…. legally it’s easy…. Dereliction of duty

  8. Out of subject but, Panthers might be in trouble wich is a great senario for the Habs getting a second draft lottery pick. Panthers only have one game left against Carolina, Islanders, one left against the Habs and Penguins have two games left against Chicago and…Columbus. I am crossing my fingers tight !

    • And I forgot Nashville 2 games to play 😉

    • Hi Mike

      Sabres still can get in (low probability, but the door is still open… a sliver

    • Hi Mike

      Sabres still can get in (low probability, but the door is still open… a sliver)

      • Ottawa will ruin it for them in the final game of the season in Buffalo.