NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 12, 2023
The Bruins become the fastest team in history to reach 50 wins, Leafs winger Mitch Marner collects four points to beat the Oilers and Lightning captain Steven Stamkos sidelined by an injured leg. Details and much more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.
NHL.COM: The Boston Bruins defeated the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 to become the fastest team in league history to reach 50 wins in a season by doing so in their 64th game. They overcame a 2-0 deficit on goals by Hampus Lindholm, Patrice Bergeron and Garnet Hathaway. With a record of 50-9-5, the Bruins lead the league with 105 points and became the first team this season to clinch a playoff berth. The Red Wings fell to 29-27-9 on the season.
Toronto Maple Leafs winger Mitch Marner had a goal and three assists as his club overcame a 3-1 deficit to beat the Edmonton Oilers 7-4. John Tavares and Noel Acciari each scored two goals while Auston Matthews tallied his 30th of the season for the 40-17-8 Maple Leafs, who sit in second place in the Atlantic Division with 88 points. Connor McDavid had a goal and two assists for the Oilers (36-23-8) as they hold the first Western Conference wild-card berth with 80 points.
The Tampa Bay Lightning’s 3-1 win over the Chicago Blackhawks was overshadowed by a leg injury suffered by captain Steven Stamkos during the first period. Brayden Point scored twice for the 39-21-6 Lightning (84 points) as they remain four points back of the Leafs in third place in the Atlantic Division. The Blackhawks dropped to 22-38-6.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Early indications are the injury may not be as serious as originally feared. He was seen in the dressing room following the game walking normally without a limp.
A 33-save performance from Jonathan Quick carried the Vegas Golden Knights to a 4-0 shutout of the Carolina Hurricanes. Jonathan Marchessault, Reilly Smith, Paul Cotter and Brett Howden scored for the Golden Knights (40-20-6), who sit atop the Western Conference with 86 points. The Hurricanes (43-13-8) sit second in the overall standings with 94 points.
New Jersey Devils forward Dawson Mercer collected an assist to extend his points streak to 12 games in a 3-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens. Nico Hischier had a goal and an assist for the 43-16-6 Devils as they moved to within two points of the Hurricanes in third overall. The Canadiens (26-34-6) have dropped six straight games.
The Winnipeg Jets defeated the Florida Panthers 5-4 on two goals by Mark Scheifele, including the winner in overtime. Kyle Connor, Nikolaj Ehlers and Vladislav Namestnikov each had three points as the Jets improved to 37-26-3, sitting in the final Western Conference wild-card berth with 77 points. Matthew Tkachuk scored twice and collected an assist as the Panthers (33-27-7) sit three points out of the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot with 73 points.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a costly win for the Jets as Josh Morrissey and Adam Lowry left this game with lower-body injuries. They’re doubtful for today’s game against the Lightning.
An overtime goal by Cale Makar gave the Colorado Avalanche a 3-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes. Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen each collected two points for the 36-22-6 Avalanche, who sit third in the Central Division with 78 points. Connor Ingram made 41 saves for the Coyotes as they slipped to 23-32-11.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Makar set a franchise record for Avalanche defensemen with five overtime goals.
Minnesota Wild goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 35 shots to down the San Jose Sharks 5-2. Mats Zuccarello, Jared Spurgeon, Matt Boldy and Marcus Johansson each had a goal and an assist for the Wild (38-21-7), who sit second in the Central Division with 83 points. Erik Karlsson collected an assist to set a single-season points record for Sharks defensemen with 84 points. The Sharks dropped to 19-36-12.
Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan picked up his 400th career NHL win in a 5-1 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. Jake Guentzel and Mikael Granlund each had a goal and an assist for the 33-22-10 Penguins as they hold the first Eastern wild-card berth with 76 points. The Flyers fell to 24-31-11.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Penguins center Nick Bonino underwent a surgical procedure to repair a lacerated kidney suffered during Thursday’s loss to the New York Islanders. He’s listed as week-to-week.
The New York Rangers got an overtime goal from Artemi Panarin to nip the Buffalo Sabres 2-1. Patrick Kane also scored for the Rangers (37-19-9) as they sit third in the Metropolitan Division with 83 points. Jeff Skinner replied for the 32-28-5 Sabres, who sit seven points behind the New York Islanders for the final Eastern wild-card spot.
Speaking of the Islanders, they dropped a 5-1 decision to the Washington Capitals. Rasmus Sandin collected three assists for the Capitals (32-28-7), who sit five points back of the Islanders with 71 points. Pierre Engvall scored for the 34-26-8 Islanders, who welcomed back Cal Clutterbuck into the lineup after he missed 20 games with a lower-body injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before this game, the Capitals announced the signing of Trevor van Riemsdyk to a three-year, $9 million contract extension. The average annual value is $3 million.
A shootout goal by Matt Duchene lifted the Nashville Predators over the Los Angeles Kings 2-1. Tommy Novak also scored and Kevin Lankinen made 26 saves for the 32-24-7 Predators, who sit six points behind the Jets for the final Western wild-card berth. The Kings (38-20-9) played without Kevin Fiala, who is day-to-day with a lower-body injury. They sit second in the Pacific Division with 85 points.
The Dallas Stars got an overtime goal from Miro Heiskanen in a 4-3 win over the Seattle Kraken. Heiskanen and Roope Hintz each finished with two points while Joe Pavelski tallied the tying goal for the 36-17-13 Stars, who hold first place in the Central Division with 85 points. Vince Dunn had two assists for the 37-22-7 Kraken as they sit third in the Pacific Division with 81 points.
St. Louis Blues forward Jordan Kyrou tallied a hat trick to beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-2. Sammy Blais had a goal and two assists for the 29-31-5 Blues while Patrik Laine and Boone Jenner replied for the 20-38-7 Blue Jackets.
The Vancouver Canucks got two goals from Andrei Kuzmenko in a 5-2 win over the Ottawa Senators. The Canucks improved to 28-32-5 and have gone 7-2-1 in their last 10 games. Tim Stutzle collected two assists for the 33-28-4 Senators as they sit six points out of the final Eastern wild-card berth.