NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 7, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 7, 2023

The Oilers down the Golden Knights to tie their second-round series, Gerard Gallant is out as Rangers’ head coach and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NHL.COM: The Edmonton Oilers thumped the Vegas Golden Knights 5-1 in Game 2 of their best-of-seven second-round series. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl each scored twice, Zach Hyman collected three assists and Stuart Skinner kicked out 30 shots for the win. The series is tied at a game apiece as it shifts to Edmonton for Game 3 on Monday.

Edmonton Oilers center Connor McDavid (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Oilers dominated the Golden Knights from the opening drop, rolling to a 4-0 lead in the first period and never looking back.

Once again, their power play was lethal, scoring three goals with the man advantage. The Oilers’ power-play success rate is a phenomenal 56.0 percent in these playoffs thus far.

They were also dangerous on the penalty kill with one of McDavid’s goals scored while shorthanded.

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers announced Saturday that they and head coach Gerard Gallant have mutually agreed to part ways. This comes less than a week after the Rangers were eliminated from the opening round of the playoffs by the New Jersey Devils.

Gallant was a finalist for the Jack Adams Award last season after coaching the Rangers to a 110-point performance. They also reached the 2022 Eastern Conference Finals. They finished this season with 107 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Rangers have now gone through three head coaches since 2018. Gallant’s status was the subject of media speculation for most of last week. He fact criticism over his strict adherence to his coaching system and supposed inability to adjust to in-game situations.

Speculation has already started regarding Gallant’s replacement. I’ll have more about that in today’s Rumors update.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Mark Giordano acknowledged his recent play “hasn’t been good enough.” The 39-year-old blueliner is playing in the second round of the playoffs for the first time in his career. He’s been on the ice for 11 even-strength goals against during this postseason.

TSN: Rookie defenseman Luke Hughes will be in the lineup for the New Jersey Devils in Game 3 Sunday against the Carolina Hurricanes. Hughes replaces Ryan Graves, who suffered an upper-body injury in Game 2.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Ben Pope wondered who will take over as Blackhawks captain when Jonathan Toews departs via free agency on July 1. Seth Jones or Connor Murphy would be suitable candidates but Pope also wondered if the club might not bother naming a captain for next season.

CALGARY HOCKEY NOW: Speaking of team captains, Steve MacFarlane wondered if offering the Flames’ captaincy to Mikael Backlund might convince the 34-year-old center to sign a contract extension. He’s slated next summer to become an unrestricted free agent.

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: The Stars signed defense prospect Lian Bichsel to a three-year entry-level contract. The 2022 first-round pick is currently recovering from a broken ankle.

THE PROVINCE: The Vancouver Canucks have signed 2022 first-round pick Jonathan Lekkerimaki to a three-year entry-level deal.

OTTAWA SUN: Another celebrity has joined another group bidding for the Ottawa Senators. Canadian music star Abel Tesfaye (also known as The Weeknd) has agreed to partner with Toronto billionaires Jeffrey and Michael Kimel of the Harlo Capital Group to purchase the club.

Canadian actor Ryan Reynolds and superstar rapper Snoop Dogg are also part of two other groups bidding for ownership of the Senators. The deadline for final binding bids is reportedly May 15.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 6, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 6, 2023

The Hurricanes take a 2-0 series lead over the Devils while the Jack Adams Award finalists are announced. Details and much more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NHL.COM: The Carolina Hurricanes thumped the New Jersey Devils 6-1 to take a 2-0 lead in their best-of-seven second-round series. Jesperi Kotkaniemi tallied twice as the Hurricanes took a 4-0 lead in the first period while Frederik Andersen picked up the win with a 28-save performance. The series shifts to New Jersey for Game 3 on Sunday.

Carolina Hurricanes center Jesperi Kotkaniemi (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Hurricanes are dominating this series, outscoring New Jersey 11-2 in the first two games and outperforming them in every aspect. Following Game 2, Devils captain Nico Hischier said he and his teammates should be “pissed off” over how poorly they’ve played. That sentiment won’t mean much if they don’t find a way to get back into this series.

Devils winger Timo Meier returned to action in this contest after missing Game 1 due to an upper-body injury suffered during Game 7 of his club’s first-round series with the New Jersey Devils.

Dave Hakstol of the Seattle Kraken, Jim Montgomery of the Boston Bruins, and Lindy Ruff of the Devils are the finalists for the Jack Adams Award as the NHL’s coach of the year in 2022-23.

FLORIDA HOCKEY NOW: Panthers forward Sam Bennett was fined $5,000.00 by the NHL player safety department for a cross-check to the neck of Toronto Maple Leafs winger Michael Bunting on Thursday.

TORONTO SUN: Bennett went unpunished for a hit that concussed Leafs rookie forward Matthew Knies in the same game. Knies will miss Games 3 and 4 and could be sidelined for the remainder of the series if it goes beyond Game 4. The Panthers lead two games to none.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bennett gets a fine for a dangerous hit to an opponent’s neck and nothing for injuring another by slamming him to the ice. And the league wonders why fans and pundits have so much disdain for its so-called “player safety” department.

SPORTSNET: Edmonton Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl left practice early yesterday after being nicked by a puck. Head coach Jay Woodcroft said it was “a little bit of playoff makeup, I think he probably had one or two sutures. He’ll be just fine.”

TAMPA BAY TIMES: The Lightning signed forward Mikey Eyssimont to a two-year contract with an average annual value of $800K.

YARDBARKER: Dallas Stars prospect Lian Bichsel underwent surgery to repair a broken ankle. His recovery time is six-to-eight weeks. He was training in preparation to play for Switzerland in the upcoming IIHF World Championship.

OTTAWA SUN: NHL commissioner Gary Bettman believes it would be a plus for the Senators to have a Hollywood celebrity as part of its potential new ownership group. However, he believes the bids must stand on their own merit. Actor Ryan Reynolds and rapper Snoop Dogg are part of two competing groups bidding for ownership of the Senators. The deadline for binding bids is May 15.