Second-round playoff opening dates confirmed, Messier Leadership Award nominees revealed, Francois Beauchemin to retire. Details and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: The dates for the opening games of the second round of the 2018 Stanley Cup playoffs have been revealed.
The Pittsburgh Penguins will face the Washington Capitals in Game 1 of their series in Washington at 7 pm ET on Thursday, April 26, while Game 1 of the San Jose Sharks-Vegas Golden Knights series begins at 10 pm ET in Las Vegas.
Game 1 of the Nashville Predators- Winnipeg Jets series opens at 8 pm ET on Friday, April 27 in Nashville.
The Tampa Bay Lightning await tonight’s winner of Game 7 between the Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs. If the Bruins win, the opening game will take place at 3 pm ET on Saturday, April 28 in Tampa Bay. If the Leafs advance, they’ll face the Lightning in Tampa Bay at 8 pm ET on Saturday.
Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Deryk Engelland, Philadelphia Flyers winger Wayne Simmonds and Winnipeg Jets forward Blake Wheeler are this year’s nominees for the Mark Messier NHL Leadership Award.
TSN: Maple Leafs forward Leo Komarov is cleared to play in Game 7 tonight against the Bruins, but it remains to be seen he’ll be dressed for that contest. Komarov hasn’t played since suffering a lower-body injury in Game 2.
Pittsburgh Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin is listed as day-to-day heading into his club’s upcoming series with the Washington Capitals (Photo via NHL Images).
PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Penguins forwards Evgeni Malkin (lower-body injury) and Patric Hornqvist (upper-body) are listed as day-to-day heading into their series with the Capitals.
NHL.COM: Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski played through an undisclosed injury suffered during a game against the Bruins on Oct. 30. Werenski wouldn’t say if the injury requires surgery.
NJ.COM: New Jersey Devils defenseman Sami Vatanen admitted he suffered a concussion following a hit from Tampa Bay Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov in Game 4 of their opening-round series. He missed Game 5 of that series and will continue working out and rehabbing in New Jersey until fully recovered.
CBS SPORTS: Minnesota Wild forward Joel Eriksson Ek suffered an undisclosed minor injury during his club’s opening-round series against the Winnipeg Jets. He’s not expected to undergo surgery.
ARIZONA SPORTS: Former Coyotes captain Shane Doan is auctioning a signed jersey in an effort to support the families affected by the Humboldt Broncos bus crash that killed 16 people.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Follow this link if you want to bid for Doan’s jersey. As of 6 am ET today, the largest bid was $2,000.00. The auction concludes Friday.
98.5 FM SPORTS MONTREAL: After 14 seasons, long-time NHL defenseman Francois Beauchemin has announced his retirement. Beauchemin tallied 76 goals and 212 assists for 288 points in 903 regular-season games, adding 10 goals and 39 points in 101 playoff contests. He spent the bulk of his career with the Anaheim Ducks, winning a Stanley Cup with them in 2007.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to Beauchemin and his family in his future endeavors.