NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 12, 2023
Oilers captain Connor McDavid reaches a scoring milestone, the Rangers’ Artemi Panarin and the Kings’ Adrian Kempe each tally four goals, the Blues’ Ryan O’Reilly returns from injury with an overtime goal, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.
NHL.COM: Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid had a goal and two assists in a 6-3 victory over the Ottawa Senators. The Oilers (30-18-5) remain unbeaten in regulation in their last 11 games (9-0-2) and move one point behind the first-place Vegas Golden Knights in the Pacific Division with 65 points. The Senators slipped to 24-24-3 on the season and sit 10 points out of the final Eastern Conference wild-card berth with 51 points.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: McDavid joined Wayne Gretzky as the second player in NHL history with multiple-point streaks of 15-or-more games in the same season more than once in his career. Meanwhile, Senators goaltender Anton Forsberg was stretchered from the ice in the third period with a leg injury while defenseman Jake Sanderson also left in that period with an undisclosed injury.
New York Rangers winger Artemi Panarin scored four goals (including a natural hat trick) and collected an assist to lead his club over the Carolina Hurricanes by a score of 6-2. The Rangers (31-14-8) have won five straight and moved to within three points of the second-place New Jersey Devils in the Metropolitan Division with 70 points. The 34-10-8 Hurricanes remain atop the Metro with 76 points but their seven-game win streak has come to an end along with Sebastian Aho’s six-game goal streak.
The Los Angeles Kings crushed the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-0. Adrian Kempe tallied four goals, Anze Kopitar collected three assists while Pheonix Copley turned in a 25-save shutout as the Kings improved to 29-18-7 and sit third in the Pacific Division with 65 points. The Penguins (26-17-9) slipped to the final Eastern Conference wild-card berth with 61 points.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Kings got the win on the night they honored former captain Dustin Brown with a statue outside Crypto.com Arena and retiring his No. 23. Brown spent 18 seasons with the Kings, leading them to two Stanley Cups in 2012 and 2014. He’s also the franchise leader in games played with 1,296. Before the game, the Kings activated forwards Arthur Kaliyev and Trevor Moore off injured reserve.
St. Louis Blues captain Ryan O’Reilly’s overtime goal lifted his club to a 6-5 victory over the Arizona Coyotes. Pavel Buchnevich collected three assists and Sammy Blais scored his first goal for the 24-25-3 Blues since being reacquired from the New York Rangers. Nick Schmaltz had four points and Clayton Keller had three for the 17-28-8 Coyotes, who held defenseman Jakob Chychrun from this game for trade-related reasons.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: O’Reilly and Buchnevich returned to action following lengthy absences due to injuries. As for Chychrun, it appears he’s finally going to be traded following months of speculation stretching back to last season. I’ll have more about his situation in the Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup.
The Detroit Red Wings defeated the Vancouver Canucks 5-2. Dylan Larkin and Jonatan Berggren each scored two goals for the Wings (23-20-8) as they sit seven points out of the final Eastern playoff spot with 54 points. Anthony Beauvillier had a goal and an assist for the 21-28-4 Canucks.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Beauvillier has two goals and an assist in four games since joining the Canucks from the New York Islanders in the Bo Horvat trade.
Calgary Flames winger Dillon Dube had a goal and three assists while rookie Jakob Pelletier scored his first NHL goal in a 7-2 drubbing of the Buffalo Sabres (26-21-4). The Flames improved to 25-18-10 and sit just outside the final Western Conference wild-card spot with 60 points. Sabres center Tage Thompson scored his 35th of the season as his club sits five points behind the Penguins for the final Eastern wild-card berth with 56 points.
The Montreal Canadiens got an overtime goal by Mike Matheson to upset the New York Islanders 4-3 to snap a four-game losing skid. Mike Hoffman had three assists for the 21-27-4 Canadiens. Brock Nelson had two points to extend his points streak to 10 games for the Islanders (27-23-6) as they sit one point out of the final Eastern playoff spot.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was the Canadiens’ first win in their powder-blue “reverse retro” uniform. Habs coach Martin St. Louis is no fan of the jersey, calling them an affront to the franchise’s history.
An overtime goal by Matt Duchene gave the Nashville Predators a 2-1 win over the Philadelphia Flyers. It was a costly win for the Predators (25-19-6) as winger Filip Forsberg left the game after falling awkwardly to the ice following a hit by Flyers defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen. The Preds sit four points out of the final Western playoff berth with 56 points. The Flyers (22-22-10) are seven points out of playoff contention in the East with 54 points.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That was a scary-looking injury for Forsberg, who appeared dazed as he struggled to get up and had to be helped off the ice. There was no update about his condition following the game but it looked like a concussion to me.
Tampa Bay Lightning center Anthony Cirelli scored twice and chipped in an assist in a 3-1 win over the Dallas Stars. Andrei Vasilevskiy turned aside 28 shots for the win as the 34-16-2 Lightning moved to within two points of the second-place Toronto Maple Leafs in the Atlantic Division with 70 points. Jamie Benn scored his 21st goal of the season for the Stars (30-14-10) as they remain atop the Western Conference standings with 70 points.
The Washington Capitals got goals from Nicklas Backstrom and Garnet Hathaway to hold off the Boston Bruins 2-1, handing the latter their fourth loss in five games. Darcy Kuemper made 27 saves for the 28-20-6 Capitals as they vaulted over the Pittsburgh Penguins into the first Eastern wild-card berth with 62 points. Nick Foligno scored for the Bruins (39-8-5) as they remain atop the overall standings with 83 points.
Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon scored twice and collected an assist in a 5-3 victory over the Florida Panthers, snapping the latter’s three-game win streak. Alexandar Georgiev kicked out 42 shots for the win as the Avalanche (28-19-4) sit in third place in the Central Division with 60 points. Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 45 shots for the 26-23-6 Panthers, who are three points out of an Eastern wild-card spot with 58 points.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a big win for the Avalanche but they lost defenseman Erik Johnson as he left the game in the first period after blocking a shot. They’re already playing without blueliner Cale Makar following a blindside hit by the Penguins’ Jeff Carter earlier in the week.
The Columbus Blue Jackets upset the Toronto Maple Leafs by a score of 4-3. Kent Johnson snapped a 3-3 tie in the third period as he, Kirill Marchenko and Boone Jenner each had a goal and an assist for the 16-33-4 Blue Jackets. Mitch Marner and William Nylander each had two points for the Leafs (32-14-8) as they sit in second place in the Atlantic Division with 72 points.
Shootout goals by Mats Zuccarello and Frederick Gaudreau gave the Minnesota Wild a 3-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils to snap a three-game losing skid. Filip Gustavsson got the win for the Wild (28-20-4) with a 27-save performance as they cling to the final Western wild-card spot with 60 points. Tomas Tatar tallied twice for the Devils (34-13-5) as they sit in second place in the Metropolitan Division with 73 points.
Winnipeg Jets winger Blake Wheeler scored two goals and assisted on another to beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-1. Josh Morrissey had a goal and an assist for the 33-19-1 Jets as they sit second overall in the Western Conference with 67 points. Tyler Johnson replied for the Blackhawks as they sank to 16-30-5.