NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 29, 2024

by | Apr 29, 2024 | News, NHL | 19 comments

The Rangers sweep the Capitals while the Avalanche, Canucks and Oilers are on the verge of advancing to the second round. Check out the details in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: The New York Rangers became the first team in the 2024 postseason to advance to the second round with a 4-2 win over the Washington Capitals to sweep their best-of-seven series 4-0. Artemi Panarin broke a 2-2 tie in the third period, Jack Roslovic netted the insurance goal and Igor Shesterkin made 23 saves for the win. Martin Fehervary and Hendrix Lapierre replied for the Capitals. The Rangers await the winner of the Carolina Hurricanes-New York Islanders series.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Rangers’ roster depth and special teams proved too much for the Capitals.

For the first time in his long career, Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin was held pointless in a playoff series. The Rangers did a fine job limiting his scoring opportunities.

Following Game 4, Capitals forward Dylan Strome revealed teammate T.J. Oshie played with a broken hand. Oshie faces an uncertain future after dealing with a concussion and lingering back issues during the regular season.

I’ll have more about the Capitals in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.

Vancouver Canucks winger Brock Boeser (NHL Images).

A hat trick by Brock Boeser set the stage for Elias Lindholm’s overtime goal as the Vancouver Canucks overcame a 3-1 deficit in Game 4 to defeat the Nashville Predators 4-3. Boeser scored twice in the final three minutes of regulation after the Canucks pulled goaltender Arturs Silovs for an extra attacker. Silovs made 27 saves and J.T. Miller collected three assists for the Canucks to take a 3-1 lead in the first-round series. Mark Jankowski, Gustav Nyquist and Filip Forsberg scored for the Predators. The Canucks can wrap up the series in Game 5 on Tuesday, Apr. 30 at 10 pm EDT in Vancouver.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Silovs got the start as Casey DeSmith was dealing with an undisclosed injury. He’s the third goalie to start for the Canucks in this series as Thatcher Demko is sidelined for the series with a knee injury.

Colorado Avalanche winger Valeri Nichushkin scored a hat trick in a dominant 5-1 victory over the Winnipeg Jets in Game 4 of their opening-round series. Nathan McKinnon had two assists while Cale Makar scored a highlight-reel end-to-end goal for the Avalanche, who can wrap up this series in Game 5 in Winnipeg on Tuesday starting at 9:30 pm EDT.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: After dropping the opening game, the Avalanche have dominated the Jets in this series. They’ve controlled the game with speed, two-way play and special teams.

Jets forward Vladislav Namestnikov left the game early in the third period after being struck in the face by a shot from teammate Nate Schmidt. He was helped off the ice and was taken to a hospital. There was no postgame report about his condition.

Edmonton Oilers goaltender Stuart Skinner turned in a 33-save shutout to blank the Los Angeles Kings 1-0 in Game 4 of their first-round series. Evan Bouchard scored the only goal for the Oilers, who hold a 3-1 series lead as the series returns to Edmonton for Game 5 on Wednesday, May 1 (start time TBA). Connor McDavid collected an assist to become the first player in this postseason to reach 10 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Kings outplayed the Oilers but the latter put up a stingy defense around their net. Skinner earned this shutout but his teammates did a good job limiting the number of high-danger shots sent his way.


TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs are giving center Auston Matthews as much time as he needs to recover from an illness that forced him to leave Game 4 of their first-round series with the Boston Bruins. Head coach Sheldon Keefe didn’t indicate what type of illness Matthews has but said it’s gotten worse when he’s playing. Game 5 of their series takes place on Tuesday in Boston with the Leafs on the verge of elimination.

DAILY FACEOFF: Toronto Marlies forward (and former Leaf) Kyle Clifford went after Belleville Senators winger Bokondji Imama in the handshake line after the Senators won the best-of-three playoff series. It’s unclear what sparked Clifford’s angry reaction but the two players have a history of ill will toward each other.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Marlies play-by-play man Todd Crocker claimed what precipitated the exchange was Imama saying “some horrible things” to Clifford on the bench during Game 2. It remains to be seen if the Marlie will file a protest to the AHL or if the league will investigate the incident.

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins head coach J.D. Forrest and assistant coach Kevin Porter will not have their contracts renewed. The club is the AHL affiliate of the Pittsburgh Penguins.


  1. Holy crap … of all the weirdest playoff games I’ve watched over 6+ decades, that Edmonton-L.A. tilt last night ranks right up near the top. After scores of 7-4, 5-4 and 6-1 we get a 60-minute 1-0 result where the WINNING team manages just 13 shots on goal while their goalie is standing on his head.

    Meanwhile, a goalie with seasonal stats of 2.39gaa and 0.921 save % is suddenly a sieve, sporting a 5.22 gaa and save % of 0.870! WTF? Were the Jets pretenders and the Avalanche playing possum all season long?

    Weird stuff. Looks like Canada’s hope for a return of the cup after 3 decades now rests solely with the Canucks and Oilers.

    Congratulations to the Belleville Senators for winning the Mini-Battle Of Ontario against the Toronto Marlies.

    • The playoffs George.
      As a closet Isles fan I thought i’d seen it all the other night then NY gave up 4 goals in the final 5 minutes to lose.

      Nashville essentially pulled the same thing last night. The games just aren’t over until they’re over.

      • The Oil are capable of that time of game now. On their 16 game heater they went more than 20 games without giving up more than 2.

        Here is an interesting stat for that series; even strength goals are 10-10. PP goals 8-0 Oil.

        Don’t take penalties against the Oilers. Both teams only had 1 PP last night, Oil scored, Kings didn’t.

      • Re: “Don’t take penalties against the Oilers” – no kidding! Wow. That is some stat!

    • I was thinking the same thing George… what a wild way to win a nail biter… outshot like that and yet by all accounts and my own eyes, the Oilers were actually very solid on defense. They just didn’t control in the other zone much… either way Skinner looked great!

      The Jets… I just cannot fathom how this is the same team as the regular season. It’s like they just threw out their playbook and started a weird game of disorganized shimmy. Connor looks worse than Korpisalo out there.

      The Rangers/Capitals series may go down as the most boring thing I have ever tried to watch. No intensity, no emotion, no fun! Ovi seemed completely worn out by the his chase to beat Gretzky. I honestly think that’s all he’s got left and will retire as soon as he breaks that record.

      Rangers will not have it easy against Carolina.

  2. Oilers & Kings game last night.

    Kings Cam Talbot had a 5.31 goals-against average and .891 save percentage in the first three games.
    we have seen him run out of Gas in Edmonton before….

    it looked like Paul Coffey wanted to see mere defence last night from the Oil as they only had 12 shot on Rittich, it was a very very low scoring game for the oil the lowest i have ever seen…

    Stu Skinner played great like we know the young goaltender can, Skinner stopped 33 shots…..👏
    Hopefully they finish the Kings of back here in edmonton on Wednesday

    What a come back by Vancouver last night…
    there young back up Sliovs played very well in the game with No Playoff games experience.👏

    NYR rolled over the old Caps, OV looked Completly Out of Gas again last night❗️ it looks like an other re-build coming to the caps soon…..

    Avs look like the mean buissnes hamering the
    Jets 5-1…. 🤔

    • Yes as a Jets fan it’s easy to slip towards the Darkside at this point. I really believe that 7-0 score in Colorado had a huge negative effect in that room.
      Now the boys want to play pretty boy run and gun hockey. Not going well as every Jets fan knew would happen.
      Yes Caper I agree Perfetti and possibly even Lambert need to be added. I’m going to try to be positive with Ehlers and assume he is going to require some type of off season surgery (haha).
      We could slam the whole rosters performance and coaching decisions here but I’m holding back for another guy check game. But saying that unless we revert to what we actually do well we’re going to watch Makar skate circles around us one more time.
      Let’s see what the boys have got

  3. Kyle Clifford went after Belleville Senators winger Bokondji Imama in the handshake line after the Senators won the best-of-three

    Watched the clip as noted in the clip, these two already passed each other in the handshake line, and then Clifford after shaking someone elses hand went back at Boko. Likely something said after the handshake.

    Ovi 4gp 0 goals 0 assist -2 sure Ranger kept him in check, or is Ovie just interested in chasing Gretzky record?

    Marner did get the only goal against Boston, the amount of H*te he is taking on line from ex-players an media is crazy. Leaf fans are passionate for sure.

    Here in Winnipeg, we got a coach who can’t coach, everyone talks about Colorado speed, Winnipeg has Ehlers and Connor two of the fastest players in the league, other than game one have been brutal. I didn’t realize how soft both players are. Bowness both them together late yesterday with Scheifele and they did create some chances.

    Cole Perfetti 19g 19a 38pts 71gp can’t get into the lineup. That’s just bad coaching.

    Chevy traded a 4th round pick for Colin Miller, yet to make it in the lineup.

    All the defensive structure during the regular season, gone.

    Toffoli, Monahan invisible

    Get back to structure, i guess with Namestnikov taking the puck to the face he’ll be out next game, either way Perfetti needs to draw in. I would also put Miller in the lineup why else hand out a 4th round pick.

    • What do you think is going on, Caper? I thought Bowness was getting some good results when he was coaching Dallas. Have the players suddenly tuned him out? Just seems like we are watching a different team than the regular season. Toffoli is a playoff performer and Monahan is a leader. Something else must be going on for those two to suddenly disappear.

    • Everydayboots, this team shutdown Avs in the regular season. maybe after game one they thought they could run and gun with them.

      Have to give Colorado credit they changed their structure to limit Winnipeg chances, forcing them to outside and limiting them to one and and done.

      Players like Valardi, Toffoli, Iafflo etc need to start driving the net and battle.

      There is a lack of compete for my liking. Ehlers gets knocked down and lays on the ice watching Colorado go down the ice and score.

      I don’t mind a loss but i want to see the team compete.

    • Leafs suck WHY are we even talking about them!!!! Have not won anything since World War II!!!!!!!!!!

  4. Ov needs to retire. He’s embarrassing himself.

    La famous for not keeping accurate shot count for opposition teams. After 1st period showed oil 4 la 14. NHL.com showed oil 6 la 11. Magically corrected during 1st intermission.

    Talbot being Talbot. Tires during end of season, collapses in playoffs. Has shown this trend for his career. Gets over played in regular season.

    • We saw that in spades re Talbot here in Ottawa, Richard.

      Ovechkin played like someone who knew – beyond doubt – that his team had about as much chance of defeating the Rangers in a series as does the proverbial snowball in Hell.

      I’m beginning to think caper nailed it above – his main focus now is to rack up seasonal points to catch Gretzky. Not a good look.

      • George, in the post game press conference Spencer Carbery explained that Ovechkin had little left in the tank after willing his team into the playoffs through the late season winning streak.

        Re-build has already begun in Washington. A handful of players look to have made the jump from Hershey to the NHL. If Backstrom remains on LTIR next season, the Caps will have room to add an impact player. Not many expected them to make the playoffs this year – I sure didn’t. Would have to say that Carbery’s first year as an NHL coach was successful.

      • I didn’t catch that interview, Hammer … thanks. One way or another he was almost invisible. Fatigue will certainly do that.

        I’ve always admired Ovechkin – right from his first appearance – clearly loved the game and the spotlight – and with a sense of humor.

        Personally, I’ve been hoping he catches Gretzky – just hope they can make the changes necessary to make the remaining games meaningful for him and the team. Because they aren’t getting any younger for sure

        Ovie turns39 in Sept; Oshie 38 in Dec; Pacioretty 36 in Nov; Dowd 34 in May; Carlson 35 next Jan; Jensen 34 in Sept; vanRiemsdyk 33 in July; Kuemper 34 in May; Lindgren 31 in Dec.

  5. The Canucks have won 3 games with 3 different goalies. That’s depth!

    • Wow. Didn’t tip to that fact. Thanks Gored. That is interesting.

      • Let s face it,Capitols were the worst team in the playoffs! Islanders a close second! Islander teammates are probably pissed
        at Barzal for scoring in the second OT! Now they go back to Carolina to get dope slapped!

  6. I know it’s hockey and there is trash talking and jeering but man… for Nashville fans to taunt a goalie who just arrived from the minors in a playoff situation in that fashion was pretty darn classless.

    I am happy Silovs made them eat crow.