NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 28, 2018
Game 1 of the 2018 Stanley Cup Final begins tonight. Check out the latest in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: Game 1 of the 2018 Stanley Cup Final between the Vegas Golden Knights and Washington Capitals begins tonight at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas at 8 pm ET.
NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON: To win Game 1, the Capitals will need a fast start, limit turnovers, make Vegas goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury uncomfortable in his crease and shut down Vegas’ top line.
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: The Golden Knights will lean on the experience and leadership of veterans such as James Neal in the Stanley Cup Final.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Members of the Professional Hockey Writers Association have been asked to wear something red for Game 1 in honor of legendary sportswriter Red Fisher, who passed away earlier this season. Fisher covered the Montreal Canadiens for 57 years.
NEW YORK POST: In his preview of the Stanley Cup Final, Larry Brooks says he isn’t attempting to minimize the Golden Knights’ achievement, after claiming the expansion draft was rigged, in part by “inflicting pain” on the clubs carrying a large number of players with no-movement clauses, and suggesting the current playoff bracket system helped Vegas reach the Final.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Funny how no one foresaw Vegas benefiting from a “rigged draft” last year. Most pundits and fans expected the Golden Knights to be a bad team in their inaugural campaign. Heck, some even lambasted Vegas GM George McPhee for passing up what they considered better players available in the expansion draft.
And how were teams carrying players with no-movement clauses supposedly “punished” by the expansion draft? Those teams agreed to give those players those contracts well before those expansion draft rules were drawn up. What part of “no-movement” did they not understand? They brought that pain upon themselves. The league couldn’t overturn the rules of the collective bargaining agreement just to make it possible for teams to dump untradeable players into the expansion draft.
The Golden Knights’ path to the Final wasn’t easy. Yes, they swept the LA Kings in Round 1, but every game in that series was decided by one goal. A bounce here, a break there, and perhaps it would’ve had a different outcome. Round 2 against the San Jose Sharks was tied at two games apiece before Vegas took the next two games. And Vegas goalie Marc-Andre Fleury flat-out stole the Western Conference Final against the Winnipeg Jets.
In other words, suggesting the Golden Knights benefited from a rigged draft or an easier playoff schedule IS attempting to minimize their achievements this season.
KUKLA’S KORNER: cites a blog post from Cissy Franzen revealing her husband, former NHL player Johan Franzen, is undergoing extensive treatment for post-concussion syndrome. Franzen’s career was cut short by injuries in 2016.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to Franzen and his family during this difficult period.