NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 15, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 15, 2023

Tuesday’s action saw the Bruins regain first place in the overall standings while the Ducks set a league record for comeback wins. Check out the recaps plus the latest on the Devils’ Jack Hughes, the Oilers’ Leon Draisaitl and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: The Boston Bruins (12-1-2) took over first place (26 points) in the overall standings with a 5-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres. David Pastrnak had a goal and two assists while Charlie McAvoy and Pavel Zacha each collected two assists. Victor Olofsson scored both goals for the Sabres (7-8-1), who also lost scoring center Tage Thompson for what could be a “significant” amount of time with an injured left wrist.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Losing Thompson comes at a time when the Sabres are struggling to gain some traction in the standings. They face a big challenge offsetting his absence if he’s sidelined for a long time.

Speaking of the Bruins, winger Jake DeBrusk has been having trouble finding the back of the net through the early going. Coming off a 27-goal performance last season, he’s managed just one goal in 14 games thus far.

Third-period goals by Radko Gudas and Adam Henrique lifted the Anaheim Ducks over the Nashville Predators 3-2, setting an NHL single-season record with their sixth comeback third-period win through the first 15 games of the season. John Gibson stopped 29 shots for the Ducks as they improved to 9-6-0 on the season. Filip Forsberg and Roman Josi scored for the Predators as they slipped to 5-10-0.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Earlier in the day, the Predators placed forward Tommy Novak (upper body) on injured reserve. He’s expected to miss four to six weeks.

The Washington Capitals blanked the Vegas Golden Knights 3-0. Netminder Charlie Lindgren turned in a 35-save shutout performance while Dylan Strome, Connor McMichael and Beck Malenstyn tallied for the Capitals (8-4-2). Logan Thompson turned aside 28 shots for the Golden Knights (12-3-1), who sit atop the Western Conference with 25 points but slipped to second in the overall standings following the Bruins win over the Sabres.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby (NHL Images).

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby tallied a hat trick to lead his club over the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-3. Crosby finished with four points while Erik Karlsson and Jake Guentzel each had a goal and an assist for the 8-6-0 Penguins. Elvis Merzlikins made 36 saves for the Blue Jackets (4-8-4) as they sit last in the Eastern Conference with 12 points.

Winnipeg Jets wingers Kyle Connor and Nikolaj Ehlers each tallied twice to defeat the New Jersey Devils 6-3. Josh Morrissey collected four assists for the 8-5-2 Jets as Connor moved into a tie with Toronto’s Auston Matthews for the league lead in goals with 13. Timo Meier, John Marino and Dawson Mercer replied for the slumping Devils (7-6-1) as they’ve dropped their third straight contest.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Devils got some good news as sidelined center Jack Hughes could return to their lineup as early as Saturday when they host the Rangers. However, team captain Nico Hischier (head) was placed on injured reserve retroactive to Oct. 27. Meanwhile, Jets defenseman Rasmus Kupari left this game in the first period with a possible shoulder or arm injury.

An overtime goal by Matt Duchene lifted the Dallas Stars to a 4-3 win over the Arizona Coyotes. Tyler Seguin tied the game late in the third period as he and Duchene each finished with a goal and an assist. Clayton Keller, Jason Zucker and Lawson Crouse scored for the 7-6-2 Coyotes while the Stars (11-3-1) won their fourth straight to sit atop the Central Division with 23 points.

The Calgary Flames got a 34-save performance from goaltender Jacob Markstrom in a 2-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens. Nazem Kadri and Conor Zary scored for the Flames (5-8-2) while Gustav Lindstrom replied for the Canadiens, who dropped to 7-7-2.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Canadiens defenseman Kaiden Guhle avoided a serious facial injury when he was accidentally clipped in the face by the skate of Flames center Elias Lindholm. Guhle went straight to the dressing room but returned to the game after getting treatment for a small cut to his mouth.

St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington kicked out 30 shots to shut out the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-0. Jordan Kyrou scored two goals and Pavel Buchnevich collected two assists for the Blues (8-5-1), who’ve won three games in a row and five of their last six. It’s the third straight loss for the Lightning (6-6-4) and their second straight shutout loss.

The Florida Panthers picked up their fifth straight win with a 5-3 victory over the San Jose Sharks. Sam Reinhart, Aleksander Barkov and Matthew Tkachuk each had two points for the 10-4-1 Panthers. Mike Hoffman, Tomas Hertl and Luke Kunin replied for the 2-13-1Sharks, who remain at the bottom of the overall standings with five points.


TSN: NHL general managers discuss cut-proof equipment and tweaking the rules for regular-season overtime during their annual meeting in Toronto on Tuesday.

Interest in cut-resistant equipment came to the forefront of conversation following the death of former NHL player Adam Johnson after his neck was cut by a skate blade during an EIHL game in England on Oct. 28.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Speaking of Johnson, British police have arrested EIHL player Matt Petgrave and charged him with manslaughter following a three-week investigation into the incident.

As for those tweaks to overtime, they could include a shot clock or preventing teams from continuously leaving the offensive zone to retain possession. NHL executive Colin Campbell said they haven’t considered a change to the format such as making the overtime period longer or eliminating the shootout.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’d ditch the shootout, have 3-on-3 20-minute overtime periods until there’s a winner and get rid of the “loser point”. What changes would you make? Let me know in the comments below.

TSN/EDMONTON JOURNAL: The NHL department of player safety fined Edmonton Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl $5,000.00 for a dangerous trip on New York Islanders center Bo Horvat on Monday.

The Oilers also announced that forward Dylan Holloway could be out long-term after suffering a knee injury against the Islanders on Monday. They’ve also returned forward Raphael Lavoie to their AHL affiliate in Bakersfield.

CBS SPORTS: Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Carter Hart is ready to return to action after missing the last five games with a mid-body injury followed by a bout with food poisoning.

THE PROVINCE: Canucks defenseman Carson Soucy is listed as week-to-week after suffering a leg injury during Sunday’s game against the Canadiens.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 31, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 31, 2023

Recaps of Monday’s games, the three stars of the week are revealed, calls for neck guards to be mandated following the death of former NHL player Adam Johnson, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: Anaheim Ducks forward Mason McTavish scored the tying and winning goals (the latter shorthanded) in a 4-3 upset of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Anaheim goaltender Lukas Dostal turned aside 33 shots replacing John Gibson when the latter left following the first period with an upper-body injury. Evgeni Malkin and Erik Karlsson each had a goal and an assist for the 3-6-0 Penguins while the Ducks improved to 5-4-0.

Anaheim Ducks forward Mason McTavish (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Penguins honored former teammate Adam Johnson in a pregame ceremony that also included the Ducks players. The former NHL forward died on Saturday when his neck was accidentally sliced by a skate blade during an EIHL game on Saturday in Sheffield, England. The incident is currently under police investigation.

The Vegas Golden Knights extended their season-opening points streak to 10 games (9-0-1) by nipping the Montreal Canadiens 3-2 on Shea Theodore’s shootout goal. Paul Cotter and William Carrier scored in regulation while Adin Hill stopped 37 shots for the Golden Knights. Sean Monahan and Nick Suzuki replied for the 5-2-2 Canadiens.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A solid effort by the Canadiens as they threw a scare into the defending Stanley Cup champions. However, they were stymied by the Golden Knights’ solid penalty kill, going 0-4 with the man advantage.

The Boston Bruins extended their season-opening points streak to nine games (8-0-1) by overcoming a 2-0 deficit to beat the Florida Panthers 3-2. Pavel Zacha tallied the winner in overtime and Linus Ullmark kicked out 35 shots for the win. Aleksander Barkov and Sam Reinhart each had a goal and an assist for the 4-3-1 Panthers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Panthers forward Sam Bennett made his season debut after suffering a lower-body injury in preseason but left this game with an injured left ankle. Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy received a match penalty for an illegal hit to the head of Panthers blueliner Oliver Ekman-Larsson.

Chicago Blackhawks rookie Conor Bedard opened the scoring but his club fell 8-1 to the Arizona Coyotes. Michael Carcone tallied a hat trick and collected an assist, Jack McBain scored twice and added two assists and Alex Kerfoot had three helpers for the 4-4-0 Coyotes. The Blackhawks’ record fell to 3-6-0.

The New York Rangers (7-2-0) defeated the Winnipeg Jets 3-2 as Artemi Panarin had a goal and two assists while Mika Zibanejad tallied the winner in overtime. David Gustafsson and Nikolaj Ehlers replied for the 4-3-2 Jets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rangers winger and former Jets captain Blake Wheeler was held scoreless in his first game against his old club in Winnipeg. He’s yet to dent the scoresheet for the Blueshirts this season.

Carolina Hurricanes winger Teuvo Teravainen snapped a 2-2 tie to lift his club over the Philadelphia Flyers 3-2. Stefan Noesen and Michael Bunting each had a goal and an assist for the Hurricanes as they improved to 6-4-0. Owen Tippett and Garnet Hathaway replied for the 4-4-1 Flyers.

The Detroit Red Wings snapped a three-game losing skid with a 4-3 victory over the New York Islanders on Lucas Raymond’s overtime goal. Raymond, J.T. Compher and Jake Walman each had a goal and an assist for the Red Wings as they rose to 6-3-1. Bo Horvat had a goal and an assist for the 4-2-2 Islanders.

An overtime goal by Jared McCann gave the Seattle Kraken a 4-3 win against the Tampa Bay Lightning. McCann and Kailer Yamamoto each had a goal and an assist while Philipp Grubauer made 34 saves for the 3-5-2 Kraken. Tanner Jeannot, Alex Barre-Boulet and Brandon Hagel each had a goal and an assist as the Lightning dropped to 4-2-3.

The Dallas Stars improved their record to 5-1-1 by dropping the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-3. Matt Duchene tallied his first of the season with the Stars while teammates Jamie Benn, Jason Robertson, Roope Hintz, Wyatt Johnston and Evgenii Dadonov each collected two points. Dmitri Voronkov tallied his first NHL goal for the 3-4-2 Blue Jackets.


NHL.COM: New Jersey Devils winger Tyler Toffoli, Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Jonas Johansson and Minnesota Wild forward Ryan Hartman are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Oct. 29, 2023.

TSN: Toronto Maple Leafs assistant general manager and four-time women’s Olympic hockey gold medalist Hayley Wickenheiser is calling for mandatory neck protection at every level of hockey in the wake of former NHL forward Adam Johnson’s tragic death.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Protective neck gear is mandatory in most minor hockey and junior/college leagues. There’s also been an increase in players wearing socks and wrist coverings that protect against skate cuts at every level.

Wickensheiser isn’t the only executive on an NHL team calling for this change. Boston Bruins team president Cam Neely believes it’s time for the league and the NHL Players Association to reevaluate neck safety on the ice.

Meanwhile, Washington Capitals forward and Warroad protective gear founder T.J. Oshie saw his brand’s base layer protective shirts sell out in recent days. The built-in neck collar on the shirts, which was introduced in September, is made from Kevlar.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Danton Heinen’s patience has been rewarded with a one-year, $775K contract with the Bruins. He’d signed a professional tryout agreement with the club on Sept. 5 and continued to practice with the club once the regular season was underway.

THE TENNESSEAN: The Nashville Predators placed forward Cody Glass on injured reserve.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 29, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 29, 2023

Recaps of Saturday’s game, Joe Thornton and Tomas Plekanec announce their retirements, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak scored two goals and added an assist in a 4-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. Charlie McAvoy tallied his first goal of the season as the Bruins lead the Eastern Conference with a record of 7-0-1 (15 points). Joe Veleno replied for the Red Wings (5-3-1), who are 0-2-1 in their last three contests and were outscored 8-2 in their last two games.

Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak (NHL Images).

The Vegas Golden Knights extended their season-opening points streak to nine games by nipping the Los Angeles Kings 4-3 in a shootout with Jack Eichel netting the winning goal. Logan Thompson stopped 36 shots as the Golden Knights extended their league-leading record to 8-0-1 (17 points). Drew Doughty scored his fourth goal of the season for the Kings (4-2-2).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before the game, the Golden Knights announced they moved Nicolas Roy on injured reserve.

An overtime goal by K’Andre Miller lifted the New York Rangers over the Vancouver Canucks 4-3. Mika Zibanejad had a goal and two assists while Artemi Panarin and Adam Fox each had a goal and an assist as the Rangers lead the Metropolitan Division with a record of 6-2-0. J.T. Miller potted his fourth goal of the season and Filip Hronek collected two assists for the 5-2-1 Canucks.

The Nashville Predators upset the Toronto Maple Leafs 3-2 on an overtime goal by Roman Josi. Ryan O’Reilly scored twice against his former club while Juuse Saros stopped 33 shots for the 4-4-0 Predators. William Nylander scored his sixth goal of the season for the 5-2-1 Maple Leafs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Earlier in the day, Maple Leafs coach Sheldon Keefe said sidelined defenseman Jake McCabe (groin injury) won’t be sidelined for as long as originally feared. He believes McCabe should be back “before too long.

A shootout goal by Nick Suzuki gave the Montreal Canadiens a 4-3 victory over the Winnipeg Jets. Jake Allen kicked out 42 shots while Kaiden Guhle had two assists as the Canadiens overcame a 3-1 deficit to improve their record to 5-2-1. Adam Lowry netted two goals for the 4-3-1 Jets.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a costly win for the Canadiens as defenseman Mike Matheson suffered a lower-body injury and is listed as day-to-day.

Ottawa Senators captain Brady Tkachuk tallied twice in a 5-2 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Joonas Korpisalo turned aside 40 shots while Claude Giroux and Tim Stutzle each collected two assists as the Senators rose to 4-4-0. Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel each scored for the Penguins as they dropped to 3-5-0 and sit last in the Metro Division.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Penguins continued to struggle with the man advantage and have the third-lowest power-play percentage (10%) in the league. That’s a troubling stat for a club with experienced scorers like Crosby, Guentzel, Evgeni Malkin, Erik Karlsson and Reilly Smith.

The Anaheim Ducks dropped the Philadelphia Flyers 7-4. Frank Vatrano had a hat trick while Ryan Strome had a goal and two assists for the 4-4-0 Ducks. Travis Konecny tallied twice for the 4-3-1 Flyers.

New York Islanders goaltender Semyon Varlamov made 35 saves in a 2-0 shutout of the Columbus Blue Jackets. Kyle Palmieri and Matt Martin scored for the Islanders (4-2-1) while Spencer Martin stopped 31 shots for the 3-3-1 Blue Jackets.

The Florida Panthers overcame a 2-0 deficit to defeat the Seattle Kraken 3-2 on a third-period goal by Nick Cousins. Sergei Bobrovsky made 30 saves for the win as the Panthers improved to 4-3-0. Joey Daccord made 35 stops for the 2-5-2 Kraken.


SAN JOSE HOCKEY NOW: Joe Thornton officially announced his retirement on Saturday. He hadn’t played since the 2021-22 season with the Florida Panthers.

In his 24 seasons (1997-98 to 2021-22) with the Boston Bruins, San Jose Sharks, Toronto Maple Leafs and the Panthers, Thornton amassed 1,109 regular-season assists to sit seventh on the all-time list in that category. He’s also sixth all-time in games played (1,714) and 12th in points with 1,539. Thornton scored 430 career regular-season goals and had 32 goals and 102 assists for 134 points in 187 playoff contests.

Thornton’s best seasons were the 15 he spent with the Sharks, winning the Art Ross Trophy (125 points) and the Hart Trophy in 2005-06. He was named to the First All-Star Team that season and to the Second All-Star Team in 2002-03 (with the Bruins), 2007-08 and 2015-16.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Thornton was among the greatest playmakers in NHL history. In my opinion, he’s perhaps the greatest player in Sharks history, holding the single-season record for assists (92) and points (114) and the franchise record for career assists with 804. He’s also second in total points (1,055) and third in games played with 1,104.

Thornton was the driving force that turned the Sharks into a regular-season powerhouse from 2007-08 to 2010-11. During that period, they finished atop the Pacific Division four straight times, were first overall in the Western Conference twice and second overall twice, winning the Presidents’ Trophy in 2008-09 with a franchise-record 117 points. He also helped them reach the Stanley Cup Final in 2016.

While a Stanley Cup title eluded Thornton, he was a winner on the international stage for Canada, taking home gold at the 1997 World Juniors and the 2010 Winter Olympics as well as the World Cup of Hockey in 2004 and 2016.

DAILY FACEOFF: Former Montreal Canadiens center Tomas Plekanec also announced the end of his playing career yesterday. Apart from 17 games with the Toronto Maple Leafs, he played the rest of his 1,001 career NHL games with the Canadiens from 2003-04 to 2018-19, sitting seventh on the franchise’s all-time list of games played with 984. He finished with 233 goals and 375 assists for 608 career regular-season points as well as 53 points in 94 career playoff games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Plekanec was a fan favorite in Montreal for his two-way skills. He’s played in Czechi since 2018-19, spending the past three seasons with the Kladno Knights, where he skated with Jaromir Jagr.

NEW JERSEY HOCKEY NOW: Devils captain Nico Hischier will miss Sunday’s game against the Minnesota Wild with an upper-body injury.

NHL.COM: Speaking of Hischier, Buffalo Sabres defenseman Connor Clifton received a two-game suspension for an illegal hit to the head of the Devils captain on Friday.

WGR 550: And speaking of the Sabres, goaltender Eric Comrie is listed as week-to-week with a lower-body injury. With Devon Levi still on the mend, the Sabres have called up Devin Cooley to back up Ukko-Pekka Luukkonen.

THE ATHLETIC: Canada Post issued a stamp to commemorate Willie O’Ree becoming the first player to break the NHL’s color barrier in 1958.

NEW YORK POST: Former NHL player Adam Johnson died on Saturday following a freak accident while playing with the EIHL’s Nottingham Panthers when his neck was cut by a skate blade. He was 29 years old. Johnson played 13 games with the Penguins from 2018-19 to 2019-20.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: My condolences to Johnson’s family, friends and teammates.