NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 12, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 12, 2022

A milestone night for the Penguins’ Evgeni Malkin and the Capitals’ John Carlson, an update on the Oiler’s Evander Kane and the Blue Jackets’ blueline suffers a major blow. Details and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin scored his 450th career NHL goal in a 4-2 victory over the Toronto Maple Leafs. Brock McGinn and Jake Guentzel tallied in the third period for the Penguins, who improved to 6-6-2. Zach Aston-Reese and William Nylander replied for the 7-5-3 Maple Leafs.

Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Former Maple Leafs star and Hall-of-Famer Borje Salming received an emotional standing ovation from Toronto fans during a pregame ceremony honoring this year’s Hockey Hall of Fame inductees. Salming, who is battling ALS (Lou Gerhig’s disease), was assisted by his former teammate and fellow Hall-of-Famer Darryl Sittler as he waved to the crowd to acknowledge the cheers.

Salming was one of the greatest defensemen in NHL history and a trailblazer for European players. I don’t know about the rest of you, but seeing a tearful Sittler helping Salming wave to the fans left me choked up too.

The Washington Capitals got two goals from Sonny Milano to defeat the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-1. John Carlson picked up an assist to become the first defenseman in Capitals history to reach 600 career points and sits fifth on their all-time points list. The Capitals improved to 7-7-2 while the Lightning sit at 7-6-1.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Capitals head coach Peter Laviolette missed this game after being diagnosed with COVID-19. He is expected to miss Sunday’s rematch with the Lightning.

Minnesota Wild goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury kicked out 28 shots to shut out the Seattle Kraken 1-0. Mats Zuccarello scored for the Wild (7-6-1) while the Kraken sit at 8-5-2.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before the game, the Kraken placed sidelined goaltender Philipp Grubauer (lower body) on long-term injured reserve.

The San Jose Sharks held off the Dallas Stars 5-4 to improve their record to 4-9-3. The Sharks got two-point performances from Timo Meier, Tomas Hertl, Logan Couture and Alexander Barabanov. Jamie Benn scored two goals for the 8-5-1 Stars.

HEADLINES

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Oilers winger Evander Kane was in good spirits as he spoke with the media on Friday for the first time since suffering a gruesome injury to his left wrist on Tuesday.

Kane’s wrist was sliced down to the bone when Tampa Bay Lightning forward Pat Maroon accidentally skated over it. He was rushed to a hospital and underwent surgery. “I was really lucky that they were able to reattach everything,” said Kane, who will be sidelined for up to four months. “I’m thankful that I’m going to be able to make a full recovery.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to Kane in his recovery.

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski is out for the season after suffering a separated shoulder and a torn labrum during Thursday’s 5-2 win over the Philadelphia Flyers. Another Jackets defenseman, Nick Blankenburg, suffered a fractured ankle and a high ankle sprain and will miss six-to-eight weeks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This is terrible news for a Blue Jackets squad struggling to overcome a poor start to this season. Losing their best defenseman in Werenski could spell the end of their playoff hopes.

TSN: The Carolina Hurricanes placed goaltender Frederik Andersen on injured reserve with an undisclosed injury retroactive to Nov. 6.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: Avalanche forward Darren Helm underwent abductor surgery last week and was placed on long-term injured reserve.

NHL.COM: The NHL and NHL Players Association released a joint statement indicating the World Cup of Hockey will not be played in February 2024. “Unfortunately, in the current environment, it is not feasible to hold the World Cup of Hockey at that time.” They hope to stage the tournament in February 2025.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: “Current environment”, in this case, is Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 1, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 1, 2022

The Sabres’ Tage Thompson has a six-point night, the Ducks’ Jamie Drysdale could be sidelined for the season, plus updates on Charlie McAvoy, T.J. Oshie, Jake Oettinger and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Buffalo Sabres center Tage Thompson tallied a hat trick and collected three assists to lead his club to an 8-3 drubbing of the Detroit Red Wings. Jeff Skinner collected three points, including his 300th career NHL goal, as the Sabres improved their record to 6-3-0. Dylan Larkin, David Perron and Olli Maatta replied for the Wings, whose record drops to 4-3-2.

Buffalo Sabres center Tage Thompson (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE After tallying just three points in his first seven games of the season, Thompson now has nine points in his last two contests.

Shootout goals by Brent Burns and Andrei Svechnikov lifted the Carolina Hurricanes over the Washington Capitals 3-2. Svechnikov also scored the tying goal that sent the game into overtime and the shootout frame as the Hurricanes move to a 6-2-1 record while the Capitals drop to 5-4-1. Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin tallied his 785th career NHL goal.

The Los Angeles Kings improved to 6-5-0 by dropping the St. Louis Blues 5-1. Carl Grundstrom scored twice, Kevin Fiala had three assists and Jonathan Quick made 27 saves for the win. The Blues have lost five straight and fall to 3-5-0.

HEADLINES

NHL.COM: Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid, New Jersey Devils winger Jesper Bratt and Minnesota Wild goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury are the league’s three stars for the week ending Oct. 30, 2022.

THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Bad news for the Anaheim Ducks as they announced Jamie Drysdale will require surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder. The 20-year-old defenseman could miss the remainder of the season as his recovery period is four-to-six months.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A tough break for Drysdale as he was hoping to build upon his 32-point rookie performance last season. It’s also a big loss to the blueline of the rebuilding Ducks, who’ve stumbled from the gate this season with a 2-6-1 record.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Some good news for Charlie McAvoy as he’s resumed practice with his Bruins teammates. The 24-year-old defenseman is recovering from offseason shoulder surgery and wasn’t expected to return to action until December 1. He’s ahead of schedule but isn’t going to play during their upcoming three-game road trip.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: McAvoy could return by mid-November at the latest if he performs well in practice over the next week or two. He will provide a significant boost to their blueline, which has performed well in his absence. It will also force management to find a way to shed salary to make room within their salary cap payroll for his arrival.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: Capitals winger T.J. Oshie is out indefinitely while defenseman John Carlson is day-to-day as both players are sidelined by lower-body injuries.

SPORTSNET: Dallas Stars goaltender Jake Oettinger will have his lower-body injury re-evaluated in a week’s time. The club cannot recall Anton Khudobin due to salary-cap issues.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Stars addressed this by signing Matt Murray to a one-year entry-level contract. Murray, 24, played 11 games with their AHL affiliate, five of those this season. He is not to be confused with sidelined Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Matt Murray.

THE DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Stars rookie center Wyatt Johnston will be staying with the club for the season. The 19-year-old played his ninth game of the season on Saturday, raising questions as to whether the Stars would return him to his junior club before his 10th game for contract reasons.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: In other words, the first season of Johnston’s entry-level contract goes into effect when he plays his 10th game. Had the Stars returned him to the OHL’s Windsor Spitfires, his ELC would’ve slid to next season.

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Penguins center Jeff Carter has been sidelined by a lower-body injury.

TWINCITIES.COM: Minnesota Wild forwards Marcus Foligno and Ryan Hartman suffered upper-body injuries during Sunday’s win over the Chicago Blackhawks.

VEGAS HOCKEY NOW: Golden Knights netminder Laurent Brossoit has been sent to their AHL affiliate for a conditioning stint. This is the next step in his return to the Golden Knights lineup as he recovers from offseason hip surgery.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 30, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 30, 2022

The Canadiens rally to beat the Blues, the Oilers win the latest chapter of “The Battle of Alberta”, the Stars lose Jake Oettinger to injury, and Flyers center Sean Couturier is sidelined for months by back surgery. Details and much more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: The Montreal Canadiens overcame a 3-1 deficit to upset the St. Louis Blues 7-4. Christian Dvorak had a hat trick while Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield each collected three points for the Canadiens (5-4-0). Jordan Kyrou scored twice for the Blues, whose record falls to 3-4-0. Pavel Buchnevich returned to the Blues lineup after missing five games with a lower-body injury.

Montreal Canadiens center Christian Dvorak (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was the most surprising outcome of the evening. A big comeback win against the Blues for the Canadiens, who would’ve folded like a cheap lawnchair at this point last season had they fallen behind 3-1 to the Blues or any other club. Habs rookie Juraj Slafkovsky tallied his first-ever NHL power-play goal in this contest while fellow rookie Jordan Harris collected two assists.

Connor McDavid had a goal and two assists and Zach Hyman scored twice to lift the Edmonton Oilers to a 3-2 victory over the Calgary Flames in the latest chapter of “The Battle of Alberta”. Stuart Skinner kicked out 40 shots to pick up the win for the Oilers, who improved to 6-3-0. Mikael Backlund and Brett Ritchie replied for the Flames (5-2-0).

The Florida Panthers got three-point performances from Aleksander Barkov, Matthew Tkachuk, Carter Verhaeghe and Brandon Montour as they dropped the Ottawa Senators 5-3. Verhaeghe tallied twice as the Panthers improved to 5-3-1. Senators goaltender Anton Forsberg made 53 saves as his club’s record fell to 4-4-0.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The score flattered the Senators, who would’ve lost by a more lopsided margin if not for Forsberg, who deserved better from his teammates as they wasted his performance in this one. He kept them in this game despite facing 47(!) shots through the first two periods. Yes, the Sens were playing without one of their top-four defensemen in Artem Zub, but they still should’ve put forth a better defensive effort.

Four straight third-period goals (two within 17 seconds by Scott Mayfield and Anthony Beauvillier) lifted the New York Islanders from a 3-1 deficit to hold off the Colorado Avalanche 5-4. The Isles were down 3-0 at one point in the second period until Noah Dobson got them on the scoreboard. Their record now sits at 5-4-0. Evan Rodrigues scored twice for the Avalanche as the defending champions fall to 4-4-1.

Three goals in a 2:07 span in the third period lifted the New York Rangers over the Dallas Stars 6-3 to snap a four-game winless skid. Vincent Trocheck scored twice and collected an assist while Mika Zibanejad had a goal and two assists for the Rangers (4-3-2). The Stars dropped to 5-3-1 but also lost starting goalie Jake Oettinger to a lower-body injury midway through the second period.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Oettinger will be reevaluated today. The Stars will be hoping his injury isn’t serious. He’s the league leader in goals-against average (1.40) while his .952 save percentage is second overall.

Kevin Fiala had a goal and an assist and Anze Kopitar picked up two helpers as the Los Angeles Kings doubled up the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2. John Tavares and Pierre Engvall scored for the slumping Leafs (4-4-1), who have lost three straight games. The Kings improved their record to 5-5-0.

A late goal by Nikita Kucherov carried the Tampa Bay Lightning over the San Jose Sharks 4-3. Brayden Point and Brandon Hagel each had two assists while Alex Killorn had a goal and an assist for the Lightning (5-4-0). Erik Karlsson tallied twice for the Sharks but their record now stands at 3-8-0.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Karlsson’s been among the few bright spots in an otherwise horrible start for the Sharks. He leads all NHL defensemen with six goals and 11 points.

An overtime goal by Brent Burns gave the Carolina Hurricanes a 4-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers. Hurricanes captain Jordan Staal had a goal and an assist in his 1,100th career game as his club improves to 5-2-1. Wade Allison and Nicolas Deslauriers each had a goal and an assist for the 5-2-1 Flyers. Hurricanes center Derek Stepan left this game with an upper-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flyers also announced Sean Couturier will be sidelined for three-four months due to back surgery while winger James van Riemsdyk will miss six weeks recovering from surgery to repair a broken finger. Couturier has now undergone two procedures on his back since February, raising concerns that his condition could prematurely end his career.

Washington Capitals goaltender Darcy Kuemper stopped 34 shots to shut out the Nashville Predators 3-0. Alex Ovechkin tallied the Capitals’ third goal. It was a costly win for the Capitals (5-4-0) as T.J. Oshie and John Carlson left the game with lower-body injuries in the first period. The Predators dropped to 3-5-1.

Three unanswered goals by Jordan Eberle, Morgan Geekie and Jaden Schwartz gave the Seattle Kraken a 3-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins, extending the latter’s losing streak to four games. Jake Guentzel and Jason Zucker returned to the lineup with Guentzel tallying the only goal for the Penguins, who fall to 4-4-1 while the Kraken improve to 4-4-2.

The Buffalo Sabres got two goals each from Tage Thompson and Victor Olofsson as they overcame a 3-1 deficit to nip the Chicago Blackhawks 4-3 in overtime. Olofsson opened and closed the scoring for the Sabres, who improve to 5-3-0. Blackhawks goalie Arvid Soderblom made 41 saves for the Blackhawks as their record sits at 4-3-1.

Detroit Red Wings forward Lucas Raymond scored his first two goals of the season and Ville Husso made 30 saves in a 2-1 win over the Minnesota Wild. Kirill Kaprizov tallied for the Wild (3-4-1) while the Wings improve to 4-2-2.

IN OTHER NEWS…

NJ.COM: The New Jersey Devils placed winger Ondrej Palat on injured reserve with a lower-body injury retroactive to Oct. 24.

THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: The Anaheim Ducks are awaiting test results on Jamie Drysdale, who suffered an upper-body injury in Friday’s loss to the Vegas Golden Knights. Drysdale was hurt following a hit by Golden Knights’ forward William Carrier.

TSN: Devan Dubnyk yesterday officially announced his NHL retirement after 12 seasons and 542 games with the Edmonton Oilers, Nashville Predators, Arizona Coyotes, Minnesota Wild, San Jose Sharks and Colorado Avalanche. He won 253 games with a career 2.61 goals-against average, a .914 save percentage and 33 shutouts. In 2014-15, he was a finalist for the Vezina Trophy and was named to the Second All-Star Team.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Dubnyk spent nearly six seasons with the Wild, where he played his best hockey. He’s now working as an analyst for NHL Network. Best wishes to him in his post-playing career.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 29, 2021

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 29, 2021

The Capitals take over the top spot in the overall standings, the Leafs tie their franchise record for consecutive road wins, speculation over the next Canadiens’ general manager, Matt Murray demoted, Evander Kane on waivers, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: John Carlson scored and set up two others as the Washington Capitals doubled up the Carolina Hurricanes 4-2, vaulting over the Hurricanes into first place in the overall standings. The Hurricanes overcame a 2-0 deficit to tie the game but Washington defenseman Dmitry Orlov potted the game-winner with a power-play goal late in the third period. Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin tallied his 19th goal of the season. Lars Eller returned to Washington’s lineup after missing six games due to COVID-19.

Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson (NHL Images).

The Toronto Maple Leafs tied a franchise record with their seventh straight road victory by downing the Anaheim Ducks 5-1. Jack Campbell made 39 saves, Auston Matthews tallied his 10th goal of the season and John Tavares (22 points) maintained his place as the Leafs’ leading scorer with two assists. Leafs forward Ondrej Kase missed the game with an upper-body injury. Toronto (16-6-1) has won nine of their last 10 games. They’re tied in points with Washington (33) but the latter holds first overall by having a game in hand.

New Jersey Devils forward Andreas Johnson enjoyed a four-point performance (two goals, two assists) in a 5-2 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers, who’ve dropped six straight games. Devils defenseman Dougie Hamilton also scored using a custom stick in honor of Thea, a young girl Hamilton grew close with in Calgary who passed away from cancer. He put her name on his stick as part of the NHL’s Hockey Fights Cancer Night. “It’s great to score for her and her family,” said Hamilton. The Flyers, meanwhile, have lost six straight games.

Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak scored in the third period as the Boston Bruins nipped the Vancouver Canucks 3-2, handing the latter their ninth loss in the last 10 games. Linus Ullmark got the win with 36 saves.

Third-period goals by Ryan Hartman and Marcus Foligno lifted the Minnesota Wild over the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-2. Wild winger Mats Zuccarello missed this contest with an undisclosed injury. Lightning forward Mathieu Joseph left the game in the second period with an undisclosed injury.

San Jose Sharks goaltender James Reimer made 29 saves for his first shutout of the season by blanking the Chicago Blackhawks 2-0. Timo Meier scored both goals for the Sharks.

HEADLINES

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens owner and president Geoff Molson will hold a press conference today to address the firings on Sunday of general manager Marc Bergevin and head scout Trevor Timmins, the resignation of assistant GM Scott Mellanby on Saturday, and the hiring yesterday of former New York Rangers GM Jeff Gorton as executive vice-president of hockey operations.

TVA SPORTS: Tampa Bay Lightning director of hockey operations Mathieu Darche and Anaheim Ducks assistant general manager Martin Madden Jr are among two of the rumored candidates to become the next Canadiens general manager.

Others included Quebec Remparts GM Patrick Roy, Florida Panthers advisor Roberto Luongo, former senior VP of NHL player safety Stephane Quintal and ECHL Maine Mariners president Daniel Briere.

RDS.CA: Hockey analyst Vincent Damphousse and San Diego Gulls head coach Joel Bouchard are also among the rumored candidates.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Briere indicated he’d listen carefully to a proposal from the Canadiens but he hasn’t been contacted yet. Neither has Roy, whose name inevitably pops up whenever there’s talk of the Canadiens getting a new GM.

The reason why none of them have been called thus far is that Gorton will be the one who’ll do the hiring. Some pundits believe he will be running the show regardless of who becomes the next general manager.

That doesn’t mean the next GM will be a figurehead or puppet for Gorton. Whoever gets the job will work closely with the new hockey ops VP. However, Gorton will likely have the final say on all significant management decisions while Molson takes a step back from the day-to-day operations.

The next Canadiens general manager must be bilingual, a policy that for years limited the depth of talent the club could draw upon for available experienced management. The current list of available candidates with NHL management experience is rather thin. Having the unilingual Gorton in charge of overall hockey operations is a clever workaround, enabling the Habs to bring in a respected, well-seasoned NHL executive.

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: The San Jose Sharks yesterday placed winger Evander Kane on waivers in anticipation of the completion of his 21-games suspension on Nov. 30. If he clears waivers later today, he’s expected to report to their AHL.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Kane doesn’t report he will be suspended without pay. Sharks assistant GM Joe Will didn’t dismiss the possibility of the troubled winger getting traded. I’ll have more on that in today’s rumor mill.

OTTAWA SUN: Senators goaltender Matt Murray cleared waivers yesterday and has been assigned to their AHL affiliate in Belleville.

Los Angeles Kings winger Brendan Lemieux faces an in-person hearing via Zoom on Tuesday with NHL VP of player safety George Parros for biting Senators captain Brady Tkachuk on the hand on Saturday.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Lemieux could face a suspension of over five games, which would take a bite out of his salary. Sorry, couldn’t resist the pun.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Fenway Sports Group has signed a purchase agreement to assume a controlling stake in the Pittsburgh Penguins. Senior management is expected to remain in place following the sale of the club. Current co-owner Mario Lemieux is also supposed to stay with the club in some capacity.

POST-GAZETTE: Speaking of the Penguins, winger Bryan Rust (lower body) was placed on injured reserve.

WGR 550: The Buffalo Sabres signed center Mark Jankowski to a one-year, $750K contract.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 14, 2021

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 14, 2021

The Colorado Avalanche clinch the Presidents’ Trophy, the opening-round schedule of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs is released, plus the latest on Nikita Kucherov, John Carlson, Patrick Marleau and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The Colorado Avalanche clinched the Presidents’ Trophy for the best regular-season record by defeating the Los Angeles Kings 5-1. Tyson Jost scored twice for the Avalanche, who’ll face the St. Louis Blues in the opening round of the upcoming 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Colorado Avalanche win the 2020-21 NHL Presidents’ Trophy (NHL.com).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to the Avalanche on winning their first Presidents’ Trophy in 20 years.

Speaking of the Blues, they completed their regular-season schedule by overcoming a 3-0 deficit to thump the Minnesota Wild 7-3. David Perron, Brayden Schenn and Jordan Kyrou each scored two goals. The Wild will face off against the Vegas Golden Knights in the opening round.

The Calgary Flames downed the Vancouver Canucks 4-1. Earlier in the day, the Canucks confirmed sidelined center Elias Pettersson (upper-body injury) will miss their remaining games of this season but he’s working hard on a healthy return for next season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canucks still aren’t revealing the details of Pettersson’s injury but it’s believed to involve a wrist or hand.

The full schedule for the opening round of the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs was released Thursday.

It kicks off on Saturday, May 15 with the Boston Bruins facing off against the Washington Capitals. Sunday, May 16, sees the New York Islanders squaring off against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Tampa Bay Lightning tangle with the Florida Panthers, and the Minnesota Wild squaring off against the Vegas Golden Knights.

Monday, May 17 features the Nashville Predators facing the Carolina Hurricanes while the St. Louis Blues meet the Colorado Avalanche. Wednesday, May 19 sees the start of the Winnipeg Jets-Edmonton Oilers series while Thursday, May 20 features the start of the Montreal Canadiens-Toronto Maple Leafs series.

Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos and winger Nikita Kucherov practiced with their teammates on Thursday and are expected to be in the lineup for Game 1 of their series against the Panthers. Stamkos missed the final 16 games of the regular season with a lower-body injury while Kucherov missed the entire season following hip surgery on Dec. 29.

Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson said he’ll be ready for his club’s upcoming series against the Boston Bruins. He missed the final two games of the regular season with a lower-body injury.

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: Patrick Marleau plans to return for a 24th NHL season and isn’t ruling out coming back to the San Jose Sharks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The 41-year-old Marleau set the NHL record this season for most career games. This season was also statistically the worst of his career with just nine points in 56 games. If the Sharks don’t bring him back he could end up seeking a training camp tryout with another club.

THE PLAYERS’ TRIBUNE: Tyler Toffoli has embraced life with the Montreal Canadiens following his tenures with the Los Angeles Kings and Vancouver Canucks. He cited the Montreal fans and the atmosphere at the Bell Centre among his reasons for signing with the Canadiens last fall and looks forward to when fans can return to the building.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Toffoli said he wants what Montreal fans want: winning the Stanley Cup. He praised his teammates, singling out Nick Suzuki and Cole Caufield. He also revealed he thought he would re-sign with the Canucks last fall but they never made him a contract offer.

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers have received permission to interview former Vegas Golden Knights coach Gerard Gallant for their vacant head-coaching job. Meanwhile, Brian Leetch resigned as the Rangers’ hockey operations adviser.

Former New York Islanders defenseman Johnny Boychuk has taken on a coaching and advisory role with the club. Boychuk’s career was prematurely ended by an eye injury last season.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Blackhawks are being sued by a former player for alleged sexual assault in 2010 by their former video coach.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 30, 2021

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 30, 2021

The Penguins and Capitals clinch playoff berths, Ryan Miller to retire at season’s end, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: The Pittsburgh Penguins and Washington Capitals both clinched playoff berths as the Penguins edged the Capitals 5-4 on an overtime goal by Jake Guentzel. Kasperi Kapanen scored twice for the Penguins while Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom collected three assists. Both clubs are tied with 69 points but the Capitals hold first place in the MassMutual East Division with a game in hand. Capitals defenseman John Carlson was a late scratch and is day-to-day with a lower-body injury.

Pittsburgh Penguins winger Jake Guentzel (NHL Images).

A 25-save shutout by Semyon Varlamov gave the New York Islanders a 4-0 win over the New York Rangers. It was the Isles’ fourth win in their last 10 games, leaving them four points behind the Capitals and Penguins. Rangers defenseman Ryan Lindgren left the game in the third period with an upper-body injury. Earlier in the day, the league fined Islanders center Mathew Barzal $2,000.00 for embellishment during an April 22 game against the Capitals.

Third-period goals by Charlie Coyle, Taylor Hall and Brad Marchand lifted the Boston Bruins to a 5-2 victory over the Buffalo Sabres. With 64 points, the fourth-place Bruins sit one point back of the Islanders while opening a six-point lead over the Rangers.

Sebastian Aho and Teuvo Teravainen each had two points to give the Carolina Hurricanes a 3-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings. Jakub Vrana replied for the Red Wings. The Hurricanes sit in first place in the Discover Central Division with 73 points.

An overtime goal by Sam Bennett gave the Florida Panthers a 4-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. Florida rookie goalie Spencer Knight picked up his third win in as many games. The Panthers sit two points behind the Hurricanes.

Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy picked up his 30th win of the season by shutting out the Dallas Stars 3-0. Ondrej Palat, Blake Coleman and Brayden Points were the goal scorers. The Lightning (70 points) sit one point behind the second-place Panthers. The Stars (54 points) remain two behind the fourth-place Nashville Predators.

St. Louis Blues captain Ryan O’Reilly scored twice, including the winner in overtime, as his club nipped the Minnesota Wild 5-4. Kevin Fiala had a three-point game for the Wild as they rallied from a 4-2 deficit to force the extra period. The Blues (52 points) have won four straight games to open a five-point lead over the Arizona Coyotes for fourth place in the Honda West Division. The Wild are in third place with 66 points. Blues winger Vladimir Tarasenko missed the game with a lower-body injury.

Auston Matthews tallied his 36th goal of the season as the Toronto Maple Leafs downed the Vancouver Canucks 4-1. Mitch Marner had a goal and an assist for the Leafs, who sit atop the Scotia North Division with 69 points. The Canucks have dropped four of their last five games. Earlier in the day, the Leafs placed defenseman Zach Bogosian (shoulder) on long-term injury reserve.

The Calgary Flames kept their slim playoff hopes alive with a 3-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers. Elias Lindholm scored twice for the Flames (47 points), who’ve won four of their last five contests and sit four points behind the fourth-place Montreal Canadiens. The Oilers are in second place with 60 points.

A two-goal performance by Yegor Sherangovich powered the New Jersey Devils over the Philadelphia Flyers 5-3, eliminating the latter from playoff contention. Earlier in the day, the Flyers announced goaltender Carter Hart will miss the rest of the season with a sprained MCL in his left knee.

IN OTHER NEWS…

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Anaheim Ducks goaltender Ryan Miller has announced his retirement at the end of this season. He’s spent 18 seasons in the NHL with the Buffalo Sabres, St. Louis Blues, Vancouver Canucks and the Ducks. Miller spent nearly 11 seasons with the Sabres, winning the Vezina Trophy in 2009-10. He leads all American-born NHL goalies with 390 wins and sits second with 44 shutouts and 794 games played. He’s 14th on the all-time wins list.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Miller was in his prime during his years with the Sabres, backstopping them to back-to-back Eastern Conference Finals in 2006 and 2007. He was also named MVP of the 2010 Winter Olympics as Team USA won the silver medal in Men’s Hockey. Best wishes to Miller and his family in their future endeavors.

TSN: The NHL is expected to reach a decision between June 1-5 as to where the winner of the Scotia North Division will play its home games. Discussions between the league and the Canadian federal government are ongoing.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The ongoing closure of the Canada-US border to non-essential travel and traffic could mean whoever comes out of the North Division will have to play all their remaining playoff games in the United States. That means the league will have to find a suitable venue to host the Canadian team.

THE AHL: announced the Calder Cup won’t be awarded this season. Instead, the Pacific Division will hold a tournament to decide its division champion. The first-place teams in the other four divisions will be named division champions.

CALGARY SUN: Original Flames co-owner Byron J. Seaman passed away last weekend at age 97. He was among the ownership group that moved the Flames to Calgary from Atlanta in 1980 and held a stake in the franchise for the next three decades.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: My condolences to Seaman’s family, friends and the Flames organization.