NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 11, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 11, 2020

The Bruins become the first team to reach 100 points this season,  Mika Zibanejad and Filip Forsberg set franchise records with their respective clubs and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Boston Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask kicked out 36 shots to shut out the Philadelphia Flyers 2-0, snapping the latter’s nine-game winning streak. Matt Grzelcyk and Patrice Bergeron were the goal scorers as the league-leading Bruins became the first team to reach 100 points this season. The Flyers played without defenseman Philippe Myers, who’s sidelined at least four weeks with a fractured patella in his right knee.

Mika Zibanejad is the fastest player to score 40 goals in New York Rangers history (Photo via NHL Images).

Mika Zibanejad became the fastest player to reach 40 goals in New York Rangers history in a 4-2 win over the Dallas Stars. Rookie Kaapo Kakko scored twice for the Rangers (78 points), who sit three points out of an Eastern wild-card berth. The slumping Stars (82 points) sit third in the Central Division, but they’re winless in their last six contests.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Considering how many great scorers the Rangers have had in their long history, that’s quite an achievement by Zibanejad.

The Nashville Predators (78 points) moved into the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference by doubling up the Montreal Canadiens 4-2. Filip Forsberg scored twice, becoming the first player in Predators’ history to register six 20-goal seasons. Earlier in the day, the Canadiens announced leading scorer Tomas Tatar is sidelined indefinitely with an upper-body injury.

Auston Matthews’ 47th goal of the season was also the game-winner as the Toronto Maple Leafs edged the Tampa Bay Lightning 2-1. Teammate Mitch Marner collected two assists as the Leafs (81 points) opened a three-point lead over the Florida Panthers for third place in the Atlantic Division. Leafs defenseman Morgan Rielly returned to action for the first time after suffering a broken foot nearly two months ago. The Lightning are eight points behind the Bruins.

Evgeni Malkin scored twice and picked up an assist to lead the Pittsburgh Penguins over the New Jersey Devils 5-2. With 86 points, the Penguins sit third in the Metropolitan Division. Earlier in the day, the Penguins announced center Nick Bjugstad is considered week-to-week with an undisclosed injury.

Carolina Hurricanes center Sebastian tallied twice and added an assist in a 5-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. Hurricanes goalie Petr Mrazek made 23 saves in his first game since being sidelined by a concussion in late February. With 81 points, the Canes move into the first wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference. The Wings, meanwhile, have the dubious honor of clinching last place in the overall standings.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The silver lining for the Wings is they have the best odds of winning the 2020 NHL Draft Lottery.

The struggling New York Islanders winless skid reached seven games as they fell 5-4 in a shootout to the Vancouver Canucks. Brock Nelson scored twice for the Isles while Thatcher Demko made 45 saves for the Canucks (78 points), who moved back into the second Western wild-card berth, The Isles (80 points) sit one point out of an Eastern wild-card spot.

A natural hat trick by Nicolas Deslauriers carried the Anaheim Ducks to a 5-2 victory over the Ottawa Senators.

IN OTHER NEWS…

THE DENVER POST: Colorado Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon’s status remains uncertain after suffering a lower-body injury during Monday’s game against the Los Angeles Kings. Avalanche coach Jared Bednar is expected to provide an update later today. Meanwhile, the Avs announced former Colorado Rockies stars and MLB Hall-of-Famer Larry Walker will be their honorary emergency backup goalie during Sunday’s game against the Vegas Golden Knights.

STLTODAY.COM: The Blues placing Troy Brouwer on waivers has raised speculation sidelined winger Vladimir Tarasenko could be nearing a return from shoulder surgery.

CALGARY SUN: Flames defenseman Travis Hamonic could return to action against the Islanders on Thursday.

NHL.COM: The Winnipeg Jets assigned Mark Letestu to their AHL affiliate for a conditioning stint. A diagnosis of myocarditis sidelined him for all but seven games this season.

THE SCORE: The Columbus Blue Jackets will continue to allow fans at their home games despite the Ohio governor’s recommendation that indoor sports events be held without spectators over coronavirus concerns. The team has recommended those fans at higher risk, including the elderly and those with pre-existing health conditions, should avoid these events.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 15, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 15, 2020

Sidney Crosby picks up four points in his return to action, Connor Hellebuyck sets a Jets record, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Sidney Crosby scored and set up three others to lead the Pittsburgh Penguins over the Minnesota Wild 7-3. It was Crosby’s first game since undergoing core muscle surgery two months ago. Evgeni Malkin tallied twice for the Penguins. Wild winger Zach Parise potted two goals as his club dropped its fourth straight game.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby had a four-point performance in his first game since Nov. 9 (Photo via NHL Images).

After being blown out 8-4 in their previous game, the Toronto Maple Leafs thumped the New Jersey Devils 7-4. Austin Matthews tallied a hat trick, John Tavares had three points, and call-up defenseman Rasmus Sandin had two assists. Blake Coleman netted a hat trick for the Devils.

Connor Hellebuyck set a franchise record for shutouts as the Winnipeg Jets beat the Vancouver Canucks 4-0. Hellebuyck made 41 saves for his 18th career shutout, setting the club record. Kyle Connor scored twice and picked up an assist.

Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Elvis Merzlikins made 34 saves for his second straight shutout in a 3-0 blanking of the Boston Bruins. The Jackets are tied with the Philadelphia Flyers (47 points) but the latter holds the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot with a game in hand. Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask left the game in the first period with a concussion after getting elbowed in the head by Columbus forward Emil Bemstrom. There was no penalty on the play.

The Dallas Stars overcame a 2-0 deficit to nip the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 on an overtime goal by Esa Lindell. Nathan MacKinnon had two assists for the Avalanche, who’ve dropped nine of their last 12 contests.

A lacrosse-style goal by Filip Forsberg couldn’t prevent his Nashville Predators from dropping a 4-2 decision to the Edmonton Oilers. Connor McDavid and Leon Draisailt each had three points for the Oilers, as the duo remain atop the NHL scoring race.

Phil Kessel and Taylor Hall each scored twice to lead the Arizona Coyotes over the San Jose Sharks 6-3. Derek Stepan and Conor Garland each collected three points for the Coyotes.

The Tampa Bay Lightning overcame 2-0 and 3-2 deficits to edge the Los Angeles Kings 4-3 on a shootout goal by Steven Stamkos. Andrei Vasilevskiy made 38 saves to pick up his ninth consecutive victory. Jeff Carter had two points for the Kings.

A four-goal first period carried the New York Islanders to an 8-2 drubbing of the Detroit Red Wings. Brock Nelson scored twice and Jordan Eberle netted his 500th career NHL point. The Isles snapped a three-game losing skid.

Buffalo Sabres captain Jack Eichel scored the game-winner as his club doubled up the Vegas Golden Kights 4-2. Sabres winger Sam Reinhart also scored and picked up two assists. Vegas winger Jonathan Marchessault returned to action following a four-game absence with a lower-body injury. The Golden Knights have dropped four in a row.

Jonathan Toews’ overtime goal gave the Chicago Blackhawks a 3-2 win over the slumping Ottawa Senators. Dominik Kubalik tallied twice for the Blackhawks, who rallied from a 2-0 deficit to force the extra frame. The Senators are winless in their last eight games (0-4-4).

HEADLINES

NORTHJERSEY.COM: Devils center Nico Hischier will replace sidelined teammate Kyle Palmieri in the 2020 NHL All-Star Game in St. Louis on Jan. 25.

THE ATHLETIC: A lower-body injury will prevent Arizona Coyotes netminder Darcy Kuemper from participating in the upcoming All-Star Game.

SPORTSNET: Edmonton Oilers winger Zack Kassian vows to repay Matthew Tkachuk in kind after taking what he considered to be two blindside hits from the Calgary Flames winger in a recent game. Kassian is serving a two-game suspension from the league following an altercation with Tkachuk after the second hit. The league determined Tkachuk’s hit didn’t break the rules. Kassian’s first game following his suspension will be against the Flames on Jan. 29.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I have a feeling league officials will let both players know they’ll be closely watched in their upcoming games against each other.

CBS SPORTS: Buffalo Sabres forward Tage Thompson will be sidelined five-to-six months following shoulder surgery yesterday.

KSDK.COM: The St. Louis Blues placed defenseman Colton Parayko (upper-body) on injured reserve and activated blueliner Carl Gunnarsson.










The Best NHL Players You Didn’t Know Played For Your Favorite Team: Central Division

The Best NHL Players You Didn’t Know Played For Your Favorite Team: Central Division

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 3, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – August 3, 2019

Flames buy out Michael Stone, the final four salary arbitration filings, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

TSN.CA: The Calgary Flames officially bought out the final year of defenseman Michael Stone’s contract after he cleared unconditional waivers on Friday. He was entering the final season of a three-year, $10.5-million contract.

The Calgary Flames officially bought out the contract of defenseman Michael Stone on Friday (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Cap Friendly indicates the Flames now have over $7.75-million in salary-cap space with restricted free agents Matthew Tkachuk and Andrew Mangiapane to re-sign. Tkachuk’s next contract will likely exceed that amount.

It’s anticipated they’ll make a cost-cutting move before the season opens in October.  Possible trade candidates could include defensemen T.J. Brodie or Travis Hamonic or winger Michael Frolik. 

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs signed former Philadelphia Flyers winger Matt Read to a professional tryout offer. 

NEW YORK POST: The Rangers have added Gord Murphy to the coaching staff of their AHL affiliate in Hartford. 

 

 

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 14, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 14, 2019

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

NHL.COM: Sebastian Aho’s hat trick powered the Carolina Hurricanes to a 6-3 victory over the Nashville Predators. The Hurricanes have won seven of their last 10 and sit four points out of an Eastern Conference wild-card berth. Filip Forsberg scored twice for the Predators. 

Anaheim Ducks general manager Bob Murray doesn’t plan to make a coaching change (Photo via NHL.com)

The Anaheim Ducks dropped their 11th straight game as they were edged by the Winnipeg Jets 4-3 on an overtime goal by Bryan Little. Following the game, Ducks general manager Bob Murray issued a statement saying he has no plans “at this time” to replace beleaguered head coach Randy Carlyle. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Murray doesn’t intend to make a coaching change he’ll have to consider shaking up his roster to get his club back on track. Despite their lengthy losing skid, the Ducks sit just outside of a wild-card spot in the Western Conference

Columbus Blue Jackets goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky returned to action and made 22 saves in a 7-5 win over the New York Rangers, who’ve dropped six of their last season games. Nick Foligno scored twice while Artemi Panarin, Cam Atkinson, and Ryan Murray each had two points for the Jackets. Mats Zuccarello tallied two goals for the Rangers, who were criticized for their poor performance by head coach David Quinn. The Jackets were playing without center Brandon Dubinsky (hamstring) and winger Markus Hannikainen (elbow), who could be on injured reserve longer than anticipated

Before the game, former Blue Jacket and Ranger Rick Nash was honored by the Jackets and made the ceremonial puck drop with his family. Nash recently announced his retirement for health reasons after 15 NHL seasons.

Loui Erikson had a three-point performance and Jacob Markstrom turned aside 23 shots as the Vancouver Canucks defeated the Florida Panthers 5-1. The Canucks are tied with the Minnesota Wild and Anaheim Ducks (47 points) but sit just outside of the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference. 

A three-goal outburst in the opening five minutes of the first period powered the New York Islanders to a 5-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning. Cal Clutterbuck, Matt Martin, and Casey Cizikas each had two points and Thomas Greiss kicked out 38 shots. Earlier in the day, the NHL Department of Player Safety fined Lightning defenseman Mikhail Sergachev over $2,400.00 for cross-checking Buffalo Sabres forward Johan Larsson. 

Calgary Flames captain Mark Giordano commemorated his 800th career NHL contest with two goals and an assist in a 7-1 drubbing over the Arizona Coyotes. Matthew Tkachuk also scored twice for the Flames.  

NBC SPORTS: Washington Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby avoided serious injury after being struck in his left eye by a stick during Saturday’s loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets. Holtby said he suffered a scratch to the eye but took part in practice Sunday and expects to be fully recovered within 24 hours. The Capitals have no plans to call up a goalie. 

TSN: The Toronto Maple Leafs re-signed winger Trevor Moore to a two-year, $1.575-million contract extension. 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 10, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 10, 2019

Game recaps, Commissioner Bettman hopes to avoid another labor war, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: Nashville Predators winger Filip Forsberg scored twice, including the winner in overtime, as his club edged the Chicago Blackhawks 4-3. Those goals were Forsberg’s first since returning from an upper-body injury that sidelined him for 17 games. Blackhawks wing Patrick Kane collected two assists. 

Nashville Predators winger Filip Forsberg scored twice in a 4-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. (Photo via NHL Images)

David Rittich made 32 saves and Mark Giordano had three assists to give the Calgary Flames a 5-3 victory over the slumping Colorado Avalanche. Teammates Johnny Gaudreau and T.J. Brodie also had two helpers each. Avalanche forwards Mikko Rantanen and Gabriel Landeskog had two-point performances for the Avs, who’ve dropped eight of their last 10 contests. 

The Ottawa Senators picked up their first win in nine games as Colin White’s overtime goal gave them a 2-1 win over the Anaheim Ducks, who are winless in their last nine. 

IN OTHER NEWS…

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin donated nearly $60,000.00 to victims of an apartment explosion on New Year’s Eve in his hometown of Magnitogorsk, Russia. 

TSN: Mitch Marner’s agent said his client intends to hold off on contract extension negotiations with the Toronto Maple Leafs until the offseason. Marner is slated to become a restricted free agent. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Marner doesn’t want to be distracted during the season by contract talks. Given his high-scoring performance this season, it’s probably best to wait until the summer to start those negotiations. The more points he piles up the more money he can command. 

BOSTON HERALD: Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy is recovering from a foot infection that developed during the holiday break following stitches received to close a cut from blocking a shot during a Dec. 17 game against Montreal. 

THE SCORE: Anaheim Ducks prospect Maxime Comtois took to Twitter yesterday thanking fans who supported him after he was the victim of cyberbullying following his failure to score on a penalty shot for Team Canada during his country’s loss to Finland in the recent World Junior Championship. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE:  Sportsnet’s Steve Dangle did a fine job defending Comtois, who played in that tournament with a separated shoulder, from the bigoted cowards who trolled the young forward’s Instagram account with hate-filled messages. 

THE SCORE:  NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said he’s not looking for a fight in the next round of collective bargaining with the NHLPA. “I’m hoping we can extend or renew (the CBA) with minimum fanfare, and I’m not a fan of work stoppages, although we do have to have a system that works and keeps the game healthy and vibrant and entertaining as it is now. So we’ll see what happens, but I’m not looking for a fight.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The current CBA expires on September 15, 2022, but the league and the NHLPA each have the opportunity to take an early opt-out this September. If one or the other exercise that option, the current CBA will expire in September 2020. Given the contentious history between the two sides, fans can be forgiven for anticipating another lockout on the horizon, but there have been recent reports suggesting the two sides could start soon working on a CBA extension. Keep your fingers crossed!

NBC SPORTS: The uniforms for the 2019 NHL All-Star Game have been made in part with “repurposed and upcycled marine plastic debris.”

The Washington Capitals have invited the Maryland-based Metro Maple Leafs youth hockey team to a game after they stood up for a black teammate who was the target of racial abuse during a game. Nashville Predators defenseman P.K. Subban also sent that player a message of support. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s no place for racism in hockey. Scratch that, there’s no place for racism anywhere!