NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 20, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 20, 2020

The Lightning, Bruins, and Avalanche march on to the second round, the Canucks have the Blues on the brink of elimination, and the Canadiens stave off elimination. Check out the recaps in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.COM: Brayden Point’s overtime goal gave the Tampa Bay Lightning a 5-4 series-clinching victory in Game 5 of their first-round series, avenging last year’s first-round elimination by the Blue Jackets. Point also picked up two assists while Nikita Kucherov collected three helpers. Alexander Wennberg and Nick Foligno each had a goal and an assist for the Jackets.



Tampa Bay Lightning center Brayden Point (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was easily the most entertaining game of this series. The Lightning saw an early 2-0 lead erased as the Jackets took a 4-2 lead, but rallied back to tie the game, setting the stage for Point’s overtime heroics. It was a tough loss for the plucky Jackets, but their lack of scoring depth cost them against a Lightning club more motivated and better-prepared compared to last year’s series.

Patrice Bergeron’s goal in the dying seconds of the second period held up as the winner to give the Boston Bruins a series-clinching 2-1 win over the Carolina Hurricanes in Game 5 of their opening-round series. David Krejci tallied the game-tying goal in the second period and the Bruins shut the door on the Hurricanes in the third.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Bruins recovered their dominant form following a lackluster round-robin. They also overcame the departure of starting goalie Tuukka Rask for family reasons midway through this series. The Hurricanes have a bright future but they still have depth issues to sort out. Losing sniper Andrei Svechnikov to a leg injury in Game 3 didn’t help.

Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon’s four-point performance (two goals, two assists) carried his club to a series-clinching 7-1 drubbing of the Arizona Coyotes in Game 5 of their first-round series. Nazem Kadri also scored twice for the Avs in their second-straight lopsided win. Coyotes goaltender Darcy Kuemper gave up six goals on 30 shots. Following the game, it was revealed Arizona forward Christian Dvorak played this series with a separated shoulder.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Don’t blame Kuemper for his club’s implosion. The Coyotes were overmatched from the start, and it was only because of their starting goaltender that they kept this series reasonably close through the first three games. The dam burst in Game 4 and there was no stopping the Avs’ offensive flood in Game 5.

The Vancouver Canucks have the defending champion St. Louis Blues on the brink of elimination following a 4-3 comeback win in Game 5 to take a 3-2 lead in their series. The Canucks overcame a 3-1 deficit with unanswered second-period goals by J.T. Miller, Jake Virtanen, and Tyler Motte, who scored twice in this contest.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues appeared to have this one in the bag when they went up 3-1, but they sagged as the Canucks pushed back throughout the second period. It was a costly win for the Canucks as defenseman Alexander Edler left the game after being struck in the head by a skate. An update on his status could come later today.

The Montreal Canadiens staved off elimination with a wild 5-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 5 of their first-round series. Joel Armia scored twice, Nick Suzuki tallied the game-winner, and Brendan Gallagher snapped his goalless drought. Jakub Voracek scored twice for the Flyers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was the most physical contest of the series. Jesperi Kotkaniemi earned a five-minute major and game misconduct for boarding Travis Sanheim in the second period, which the Flyers cashed in on with two power-play goals. The Habs rallied back with two goals to regain the lead. Joel Farabee tied it early in the third before Nick Suzuki and Phillip Danault put it away for the Habs. Gallagher set the tone for the Habs with his feisty play but may have suffered a fractured jaw after being cross-checked in the mouth by Matt Niskanen, who could face supplemental discipline.


MASSLIVE.com: Boston Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask reportedly left the club to deal with a specific family emergency. Rask spoke with WEEI’s Greg Hill, who said the netminder received a call from his wife that there was a medical emergency with their daughter. Hill didn’t reveal the details of what Rask told him, adding that the goalie’s daughter is okay now.

NEW YORK POST: Islanders forward Cal Clutterbuck will be in the lineup against the Washington Capitals in Game 5 tonight. Clutterbuck left Game 4 following a low hit from Capitals defenseman Radko Gudas. The Islanders lead the series 3-1.

THE ATHLETIC (subscription required): James Mirtle reports the Toronto Maple Leafs received permission from the Minnesota Wild to speak with former head coach Bruce Boudreau. No formal interview has been conducted and the Leafs declined to comment, but sources close to Boudreau say he’s intrigued. The Leafs seek a replacement for departed assistant coach Paul McFarland.

TSN: The Washington Capitals signed goaltender Zach Fucale to a one-year, two-way contract.

Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – October 27, 2019

Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – October 27, 2019

Check out the latest on the Bruins and Oilers in the Sunday NHL rumor roundup.


NBC SPORTS BOSTON: Joe Haggerty examined several trade options for the Bruins to address their need for a top-six winger. New Jersey’s Taylor Hall would certainly help but he’s a left-winger and a long shot in terms of trade cost and salary cap. The Vegas Golden Knights’ limited cap space could make Alex Tuch someone to consider but he could cost someone like Jake DeBrusk in a trade package. Minnesota’s Jason Zucker would be an upgrade over what the Bruins currently have but they’d have to give up valuable draft picks and/or prospects plus a young roster player.

Could the Boston Bruins target New York Rangers winger Chris Kreider as a playoff rental? (Photo via NHL Images)

New York Rangers winger (and local boy) Chris Kreider could be a playoff rental near the trade deadline. So could Florida’s Mike Hoffman or the LA Kings’ Tyler Toffoli. A draft pick and a prospect should get it done for either guy.

An affordable gamble could be New York Islanders winger Josh Ho-Sang, who recently cleared waivers. Another would be Edmonton Oilers right winger Jesse Puljujarvi. who’s in Finland awaiting a trade.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Jimmy Murphy believes the Bruins will likely need to move a defenseman when Kevan Miller and John Moore come off injured reserve. He cites sources claiming general manager Don Sweeney is working the phones.

Shopping either blueliner could be difficult. Miller has an injury history while Moore is a third-pairing rearguard carrying a $2.7-million annual average value through 2022-23. The Bruins could also demote Steven Kampfer or Connor Clifton, though the latter will have to clear waivers if he plays seven more games this season.

If Sweeney can’t move Miller or Moore, he could be forced to trade a player he doesn’t necessarily want to move. Murphy suggests Torey Krug could surface in trade speculation. He’s slated to become an unrestricted free agent next summer and would fetch that elusive top-six winger.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Krug would attract plenty of interest in the trade market but I doubt Sweeney will move him. Despite Krug’s pending UFA status, the Bruins regard him as a necessary piece for another run at the Stanley Cup next spring.

Moving Miller or Moore won’t be easy but Sweeney could find a club with sufficient cap space desperate for blueline help. He could also include a draft pick or prospect to sweeten the deal.

Sweeney could wait until the trade deadline approaches to bring in a suitable rental winger. He’s under no pressure to make a move with the Bruins playing well through the early going.


EDMONTON JOURNAL: Kurt Leavins wonders how long it’ll take for Oilers GM Ken Holland to bring in a real third-line center. He suggests Ottawa’s Jean-Gabriel Pageau or Colorado’s Tyson Jost as trade targets.

Pageau is due to become a UFA next summer and could prove too costly for the Senators to re-sign. Jost will be among six restricted free agents for the Avalanche next summer.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Pageau might be easier to acquire than Jost. With over $57 million invested in 12 players for 2020-21, they can afford to re-sign Jost.

Leavins colleague Jim Matheson recently suggested the Oilers offer up Jesse Puljujarvi to the Arizona Coyotes for center Christian Dvorak.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sorry, Jim, that’s not gonna happen.


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 27, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 27, 2019

Game recaps, injury updates, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Brad Marchand had a goal and two assists as the Boston Bruins downed the San Jose Sharks 4-1. It was a costly loss for the Sharks as defenseman Erik Karlsson left the game in the third period with a groin injury. The game also featured a fight between Bruins captain Zdeno Chara and Sharks winger Evander Kane after the latter took exception to a high hit from Chara. The league is reviewing the hit. 

Montreal Canadiens forward Max Domi had a career-best five-point game in an 8-1 win over the Detroit Red Wings (Photo via NHL Images)

Max Domi had a career-high five-point night, Jonathan Drouin a career-best four assists, and Andrew Shaw collected his first career NHL hat trick as the Montreal Canadiens crushed the Detroit Red Wings 8-1. The Canadiens (75 points) hold the first Eastern Conference wild-card spot. 

The Carolina Hurricanes (74 points) moved ahead of the Pittsburgh Penguins and Columbus Blue Jackets into third place in the Metropolitan Division with a 6-1 drubbing of the Los Angeles Kings, Dougie Hamilton tallied twice and Teuvo Teravainen collected four points for the Hurricanes, who’ve won eight of their last 10 games. 

Speaking of the Penguins and Blue Jackets, Jared McCann scored twice while Jake Guentzel, Evgeni Malkin, and Sidney Crosby also scored as the Pens defeated the Jackets 5-2. With 74 points, the Penguins hold the second wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference, holding a one-point lead over the Jackets. 

The Minnesota Wild moved into the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference by edging the Winnipeg Jets 3-2. Jason Zucker and Joel Eriksson Ek tallied with two third-period goals 26 seconds apart for the Wild, who’ve picked up their fourth straight victory. Ryan Donato also had two assists for the Wild.

The Jets (78 points) remain one back of the Nashville Predators for the top spot in the Central Division. They also received bad news about defenseman Josh Morrissey, who’s sidelined until at least early- April with an upper-body injury suffered during Sunday’s game against the Coyotes. 

The Washington Capitals rallied from an early 2-0 deficit to thump the Ottawa Senators 7-2. T.J. Oshie scored twice in the second period, including his 20th of the season. The Capitals (79 points) moved into a tie with the New York Islanders but the latter still holds the Metropolitan Division lead because they hold two games in hand. 

A two-goal third period gave the Calgary Flames a 3-1 victory over the Islanders. Mike Smith made 26 saves for the Flames, who picked up their sixth straight win and lead the Western Conference with 87 points. 

A 34-save effort by Brian Elliott carried the Philadelphia Flyers to a 5-2 win over the Buffalo Sabres (66 points), dropping the latter eight points out of an Eastern Conference playoff spot while the Flyers are seven points out.

Joel Binnington made 19 saves as the St. Louis Blues blanked the Predators 2-0. Alex Pietrangelo and Tyler Bozak were the goal scorers. 

Max Pacioretty scored two goals to lead the Vegas Golden Knights to a 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars, dropping the Stars (67 points) to a one-point lead over the Colorado Avalanche for the final Western Conference playoff spot. 

Vinnie Hinostroza’s shootout goal gave the Arizona Coyotes a 4-3 win over the Florida Panthers, moving the Coyotes (65 points) within two points of a wild-card spot in the West. Derek Stepan scored twice in regulation for the Coyotes, who blew a third-period lead but sent the game into overtime with a shorthanded goal by Stepan. Christian Dvorak made his season debut for the Coyotes after recovering from injuries.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 18, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 18, 2019

Game recaps, Alex Ovechkin and Ryan Miller each reach notable milestones and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Alex Ovechkin reached the 40-goal plateau for the 10th time in his career but his Washington Capitals were beaten by the Anaheim Ducks 5-2. Ovechkin ties Marcel Dionne and Mario Lemieux for second on the all-time list (Wayne Gretzky leads with 12 seasons) and also tied Lemieux for the most 40-goal seasons with one team. Anaheim’s Ryan Miller picked up his 374th career victory, setting the record for American-born NHL goalies. 

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin reached another scoring milestone (Photo via NHL Images)

Vladimir Tarasenko extended his points streak to 12 games with a goal and two assists while Jordan Binnington turned in a 31-save shutout as the St. Louis Blues downed the Minnesota Wild 4-0. For the surging Blues, it was their 10th straight win.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Wild (60 points) remain one point up on the Vancouver Canucks for the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference. However, they’ve won just three of their last 10 games and seem on the verge of tumbling out of postseason contention.

General manager Paul Fenton has reportedly been given permission by ownership to shake things up for long-term gains even at the risk of hurting their playoff hopes this season. Fenton could become a seller leading up to next Monday’s trade deadline.

Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang each scored two goals and Sidney Crosby collected three assists as the Pittsburgh Penguins held on for a 6-5 win over the New York Rangers. Mats Zuccarello also scored twice for the Rangers while defenseman Neal Pionk was kept out of the third period as a precautionary measure after taking a stick to the eye. With the win, the Penguins (69 points) hold the first wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference.

Aleksander Barkov’s hat trick powered the Florida Panthers to a 6-3 thrashing of the Montreal Canadiens. Antti Niemi gave up three goals on nine shots before being pulled in favor of Carey Price. The Canadiens (69 points) are winless in their last four contests (0-3-1) and cling to the final wild-card spot in the East, one point up on the Carolina Hurricanes.

The Buffalo Sabres failed to gain ground in the Eastern Conference playoff race, falling 4-1 to the New Jersey Devils. Kyle Palmieri had a goal and two assists while goaltender Cory Schneider picked up his second straight win. The Sabres (63 points) are six points out of a wild-card spot in the East. Earlier in the day, the Sabres revealed defenseman Marco Scandella would miss the game with an undisclosed injury but he is expected to rejoin the roster later in the week.

Oscar Lindblom tallied twice and Carter Hart made 37 saves for the Philadelphia Flyers to complete a home-and-home sweep of the Detroit Red Wings with a 3-1 victory. Wings goalie Jonathan Bernier left the game after the first period with an upper-body injury and didn’t return. Like the Sabres, the Flyers are six points out of a playoff spot.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers have recalled defenseman Andrej Sekera from their AHL affiliate in Bakersfield. Sekera has missed the entire NHL season thus far with an injured Achilles tendon.

ARIZONA SPORTS: The Coyotes have assigned center Christian Dvorak to their AHL affiliate for a two-week conditioning stint. He’s recovering from a torn pectoral muscle.

NEWSOBSERVER.COM: After Don Cherry called the Carolina Hurricanes a “bunch of jerks” for their elaborate post-game victory celebrations, the club had “Bunch of Jerks” t-shirts made up and ready for sale.



NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 20, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 20, 2018

Game recaps, injury updates, Golden Knights re-sign Alex Tuch, and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: After squandering a three-goal lead, the Florida Panthers edged the Washington Capitals 6-5 on a shootout goal by Jonathan Huberdeau, who tallied a goal and two assists in regulation. Lars Eller collected three assists in a losing cause for the Capitals.

Following the game, Panthers coach Bob Boughner took exception to Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin leveling defenseman Mark Pysyk with a high hit in the second period. No penalty was called on Ovechkin as Pysyk left the game with an upper-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: No word this morning if the league will review the incident. 

Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne suffered a possible head injury during his club’s 5-3 win over the Calgary Flames. (Photo via NHL Images)

The Nashville Predators doused the Calgary Flames 5-3 but lost goaltender Pekka Rinne to an apparent upper-body injury in the third period following a collision with teammate Kevin Fiala. Predators coach Peter Laviolette provided no update on Rinne but said it wasn’t the team’s decision to take the goalie out of the game, leaving open the possibility that it was due to the league’s concussion protocol.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: An update on Rinne could be announced later today. 

Third-period goals by Matt Dumba, Ryan Suter and Zach Parise carried the Minnesota Wild to a 3-1 victory over the Dallas Stars. Wild goaltender Devan Dubnyk made 33 saves for the win.

ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Anaheim Ducks center Ryan Getzlaf (groin injury) could return to action tonight against the Vegas Golden Knights.

LAS VEGAS SUN: Speaking of the Golden Knights, they signed winger Alex Tuch to a seven-year, $33.25-million contract extension. It’s the longest deal in the club’s short history. The annual average value is $4.75 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Tuch, 22,  is an NHL sophomore in the final season of his entry-level contract. He’s currently sidelined week-to-week with a lower-body injury but rose to prominence during the 2018 playoffs, following up a respectable 37-point rookie season with a six-goal, 10-point performance in 20 postseason games.

The 6-foot-4, 222-pound Tuch can play either wing and has considerable offensive upside. If he reaches his full potential this contract could be considered an affordable long-term investment by the Golden Knights. 

NJ.COM: New Jersey Devils goaltender Cory Schneider is heading to the club’s AHL affiliate for a conditioning stint. This move is another step in Schneider’s return from off-season hip surgery. 

THE PROVINCE: Vancouver Canucks rookie Elias Pettersson may have suffered more than a concussion from the hit he received last Saturday by Florida Panthers defenseman Mike Matheson. 

Dr. Stefan Sigalet, “a founding practitioner of the Burnaby-based Catalyst Kinetics Group and consulting chiropractor for players in the NHL”, as well as other sports, viewed a video of the incident and believes Pettersson may have also suffered whiplash and a shoulder injury. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: So far, the Canucks have Pettersson listed on injured reserve with a head injury. No word thus far if he’s suffered other injuries. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens center Tomas Plekanec will be out at least two weeks with a back injury. For now, he’s listed as day-to-day. 

ARIZONA SPORTS: Coyotes forward Christian Dvorak will be sidelined indefinitely following surgery to repair a torn pectoral muscle. 

SPORTSNET: The Edmonton Oilers placed defenseman Matt Benning on IR with an undisclosed injury.

Former NHL forward Jordin Tootoo has announced his retirement. Tootoo made history by becoming the first Inuk player to reach the NHL. He spent eight of this 13 seasons with the Nashville Predators and also skated with the Detroit Red Wings, New Jersey Devils and Chicago Blackhawks.

In 723 regular-season game, Tootoo tallied 65 goals and 96 assists for 161 points and accumulated 1,010 penalty minutes. He also collected 10 points in 43 playoff games. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best of luck to Tootoo in his future endeavors. 


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 16, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 16, 2018

Game recaps, players of the week, injury updates and much more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Auston Matthews continues to make history with the Toronto Maple Leafs, collecting two assists in his club’s 4-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings. Matthews is the fifth player in NHL history to have multiple points in each of his first seven games of a season. Kasperi Kapanen scored twice for the Leafs while Ilya Kovalchuk tallied for the Kings. The Leafs, who’ve won five straight, played without starting goaltender Frederik Andersen, who’s listed as day-to-day with a knee injury.

Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews continues to make history this season. (Photo via NHL Images)

Speaking of the Kings, defenseman Drew Doughty admitted he never seriously considered departing Los Angeles as a free agent last summer. He floated the notion of joining the Leafs as a negotiating tactic with Kings management, who inked him earlier this year to an eight-year, $88-million extension.

Tomas Plekanec scored in his 1,000th NHL game, Tomas Tatar scored a goal and collected two assists and Jonathan Drouin scored twice to give the Montreal Canadiens a 7-3 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. Andreas Athanasiou scored twice in a losing cause for the Wings, who’re still seeking their first win (0-4-2) of this season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Acquired in a preseason trade from the Vegas Golden Knights in the Max Pacioretty trade, Tatar is lighting it up with his new club. With 3 goals and 7 points, he’s the Canadiens’ leading scorer

Rookie defenseman Maxime Lajoie extended his points streak to three games and Matt Duchene collected two assists in the Ottawa Senators’ 4-1 win over the Dallas Stars. During the game, the Senators paid tribute to their former starting goalie Ray Emery, who passed away over the summer.

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  Lajoie’s three goals makes him the Senators’ leading goal scorer

P.K. Subban picked up two assists and Filip Forsberg tallied his third goal in two games as the Nashville Predators doubled up the Minnesota Wild 4-2.

Boston Bruins center Patrice Bergeron, Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Morgan Rielly, and Carolina Hurricanes forward Sebastian Aho are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Oct. 14, 2018

TSN: Florida Panthers defenseman Mike Matheson received a two-game suspension for interference and unsportsmanlike conduct on Vancouver Canucks rookie forward Elias Pettersson, who is expected to be sidelined 7-10 days with a concussion.

CBS SPORTS: Speaking of the Canucks, center Jay Beagle suffered a broken wrist and could miss up to six weeks.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Justin Schultz will be sidelined four months with a fractured lower left leg.

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Vegas Golden Knights center Paul Stastny could be out for two months with a lower-body injury.

ARIZONA SPORTS: Coyotes forward Christian Dvorak suffered a setback in his recovery from a lower-body injury. More information is expected to be made available later this week.

NBC SPORTS: Pittsburgh Penguins center Sidney Crosby and Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon surprised members of Kenya’s senior men’s hockey team by joining them for a game this summer. The team had been flown to Canada by Tim Horton’s. 

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: Blackhawks winger Brandon Saad could be a healthy scratch from their upcoming game against the Arizona Coyotes. Saad has struggled this season and was recently demoted to their fourth line. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman must be regretting his decision to ship Artemi Panarin to Columbus in June 2017 to bring back Saad. Panarin tallied over 80 points last season while Saad managed 35. 

OTTAWA SUN: Dallas Stars defenseman Marc Methot acknowledged he’s been dealing with knee issues since last season. While he hopes to continue playing, he intends to take things one year at a time. Methot is due to become an unrestricted free agent next summer. 

DENVER POST: The Colorado Avalanche claimed winger Marko Dano off waivers from the Winnipeg Jets.