NHL Most Important Players: Philadelphia Flyers

NHL Most Important Players: Philadelphia Flyers


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 17, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 17, 2019

Game recaps, Ducks made three trades, Flames to retire Iginla’s number, no World Cup of Hockey in 2020, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: The Ottawa Senators defeated the Colorado Avalanche 5-2. Former Avalanche center Matt Duchene scored twice and set up another goal against his former team. 

Sean Couturier’s natural hat trick gave the Philadelphia Flyers a 4-3 win over the Boston Bruins (Photo via NHL Images)

Sean Couturier netted a natural hat trick and teammate Claude Giroux picked up his 500th career assists as the Philadelphia Flyers edged the Boston Bruins 4-3. Bruins call-up Peter Cehlarik scored his first two NHL goals. 

The Buffalo Sabres snapped the Calgary Flames’ five-game win streak as an overtime goal by Jack Eichel gave them a 4-3 victory. Flames winger Johnny Gaudreau picked up his 28th goal of the season. 

A shootout goal by Alex Chiasson gave the Edmonton Oilers a 3-2 win over the Vancouver Canucks. The Oilers are now tied with the Minnesota Wild (49 points), though the latter holds the final wild-card berth in the Western Conference as they hold a game in hand. The Canucks are right behind them with 48 points. 

The Arizona Coyotes beat the San Jose Sharks 6-3 to end the latter’s seven-game winning streak. Coyotes goalie Darcy Kuemper made 26 saves while Christian Fischer and Lawson Crouse each had a goal and an assist. Sharks forward Kevin Labanc had a goal and two assists.

NBC SPORTS: The Anaheim Ducks swung a trio of trades yesterday.  First, they shipped winger Pontus Aberg to the Minnesota Wild for center Justin Kloos. They followed that by sending defenseman Luke Schenn and a seventh-round pick in 2020 to the Vancouver Canucks for blueline Michael Del Zotto. Their final move saw them send minor-league center Joseph Blandisi to the Pittsburgh Penguins for center Derek Grant.  These moves come just two days after the Ducks traded veteran winger Andrew Cogliano to the Dallas Stars for center Devin Shore.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I wouldn’t call this a fire sale by Ducks general manager Bob Murray as he’s bringing in players who could contribute to his roster this season. Nevertheless, it’s not a major roster shakeup, probably because his club is still close to a wild-card spot despite their 12-game losing skid. 

Murray’s giving up some offense in Aberg, who has 11 goals in 37 games, but Kloos led the AHL’s Iowa Wild with 30 points and could get a shot with the Ducks at some point. The Wild, meanwhile, receive a speedy, affordable winger who could provide them with a bit of a scoring boost as they jockey for playoff contention.

The Canucks moved Del Zotto, a frequent healthy scratch, to make room for rookie star Elias Pettersson, who’s returning from injury. Schenn spent this season with the Ducks’ AHL affiliate and will report directly to the Canucks’ farm club in Utica. Del Zotto, an unrestricted free agent this summer, could become a rental depth addition for the Ducks.

Grant played for the Ducks in 2017-18, enjoying his best season with 12 goals and 24 points in 66 games. He signed with the Penguins as a free agent but didn’t enjoy the same measure of success. Murray could be hoping Grant rediscovers his form. The Penguins remove Grant’s $650K cap hit and could be setting the stage for a larger move. 

TSN: Speaking of the Ducks, veteran center Ryan Kesler has no plans to waive his no-movement clause. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens forward Paul Byron received a three-game suspension by the NHL department of player safety for charging Florida Panthers defenseman MacKenzie Weegar during Tuesday’s game. 

SPORTSNET: The NHL and NHLPA released statements yesterday ruling out the possibility of staging a World Cup of Hockey tournament in 2020. While the tournament was linked to recent talks regarding a possible extension of the CBA, the two sides intend to meet again soon to continue discussions aimed at avoiding another work stoppage. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The league and the PA have the option of exercising their early-out clause in September, which would bring the current CBA to an end in September 2020. Recent reports indicate a seeming willingness on both sides to implement a new deal without going through another round of contentious collective bargaining. We’ll find out by this September if that apparent cooling in tensions between the two sides results in a new deal. 

CALGARY SUN: The Flames will honor former captain Jarome Iginla by retiring his No. 12 prior to their March 2 game against the Minnesota Wild. Iginla announced his retirement last July 

NBC SPORTS: Former NHL winger Brandon Bollig announced his retirement yesterday. He spent five seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks and Calgary Flames, winning a Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2013. In 241 career games, Bollig had 10 goals, 23 points and 392 penalty minutes. He also had three goals, four points and 75 PIMs in 35 playoff contests. 

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 6, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 6, 2018

Blackhawks fired Joel Quenneville, plus game recaps players of the week, Brendan Lemieux suspended, and more trouble for the Senators in the NHL morning coffee headlines.

The Chicago Blackhawks have fired head coach Joel Quenneville and replaced him with Jeremy Colliton. They also fired assistant coaches Kevin Dineen and Ulf Samuelsson “and named Barry Smith to the coaching staff as an assistant.” 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This is a major move by the Blackhawks, who are struggling to regain their once-dominant form. Under Quenneville, the Hawks won three Stanley Cup during his 11-year tenure. Since their last championship in 2015, however, their fortunes have steadily declined, missing the playoff last season for the first time in a decade.

In my opinion, Quenneville is paying for management’s sins. Limited salary-cap space in recent years depleted the Blackhawks’ depth, giving him less talent to work with compared to previous years. Given his experience, he probably won’t be unemployed for long.

Colliton is earning a quick promotion from the head coach of the Blackhawks AHL affiliate in Rockford, where in his first season (2017-18) he guided the IceHogs to the third round of the 2018 AHL playoffs. 

NHL.COM: On Hockey Fights Cancer Awareness Night in Pittsburgh, New Jersey Devils center Brian Boyle netted a natural hat trick to lead his club to a 5-1 victory over the Penguins. Boyle was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia on Sept. 19, 2017, but his condition is now in remission.

New Jersey Devils center Brian Boyle’s hat trick carried his club to a 5-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins (Photo via NHL Images)

Alex Ovechkin scored his 234th career power-play goal as the Washington Capitals doubled up the Edmonton Oilers 4-2. Ovechkin tied Marcel Dionne for eighth on the all-time list. Oilers center Connor McDavid scored to keep his points streak alive at eight games.

Claude Giroux scored twice and set up another to lead the Philadelphia Flyers to a 5-2 victory over the Arizona Coyotes, snapping the latter’s five-game winning streak.

The Montreal Canadiens overcame a 3-1 deficit to down the New York Islanders 4-3 in the shootout. Joel Armia tallied the game-winner while Max Domi rallied the Habs with a goal and an assist.

Brad Marchand scored in overtime as the Boston Bruins edged the Dallas Stars 2-1, snapping the latter’s three-game winning streak.

Calgary Flames center Sean Monahan, Vancouver Canucks center Elias Pettersson, and Tampa Bay Lightning center Brayden Point are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Nov. 4, 2018.

Winnipeg Jets forward Brendan Lemieux received a two-game suspension for an illegal check to the head of Florida Panthers forward Vincent Trocheck.

TSN: A group of Ottawa Senators players issued a statement last night apologizing for critical remarks about assistant coach Marty Raymond that were caught on camera in an Uber vehicle and posted online. Matt Duchene, Chris Wideman, Chris Tierney, Thomas Chabot, Dylan DeMelo, Alex Formenton, and Colin White made the remarks in Phoenix on Oct. 29. Head coach Guy Boucher defended the players, offering support for Raymond, and calling the incident a privacy breach.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Some are pointing to this incident as yet another example of dysfunction in the Senators’ dressing room. This could also be simply a case of a few players blowing off a bit of steam. It was a private conversation recorded without their knowledge that shouldn’t have been publicly shared. It’s a reminder for players to mind what they say in public.

THE TENNESSEAN: Nashville Predators winger Viktor Arvidsson (lower body, day-to-day) was placed on injured reserve.

NBC SPORTS: San Jose Sharks forward Tomas Hertl is listed as day-to-day “after taking a shoulder to the head in Saturday night’s tilt against the Philadelphia Flyers.”



NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 8, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 8, 2018

Game recaps, seven of eight opening-round playoff series set, Rangers fire Vigneault, Red Wings re-sign Holland and the hockey world mourns junior hockey tragedy. Details and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Gabriel Landeskog scored and collected two assists as the Colorado Avalanche defeated the St. Louis Blues 5-2 to clinch their first playoff berth since 2014. The Avs will face the Nashville Predators in the opening round of the 2018 playoffs, while the Blues will miss the postseason for the first time since 2011.

Claude Giroux’s first career hat trick helped the Philadelphia Flyers clinch a playoff berth (Photo via NHL Images)

Thanks to Claude Giroux’s first career hat trick, the Philadelphia Flyers also clinched a playoff berth by shutting out the New York Rangers 5-0. Giroux also reached the 100-point plateau (102) for the first time, becoming the first Flyer to do so since Eric Lindros in 1995-96. The Flyers’ opening-round opponent will be the Pittsburgh Penguins. The Flyers’ win also ended the Florida Panthers’ playoff hopes. Following the game, the Rangers announced the firing of head coach Alain Vigneault. 

Speaking of the Panthers, they went on to set a franchise record for home wins (27) by downing the Buffalo Sabres 4-3. Vincent Trocheck and Colton Sceviour each tallied a goal and an assist for the Panthers. It was the final game for Panthers winger Radim Vrbata, who is retiring after 16 NHL seasons. 

The Boston Bruins picked up their 50th win of the season by downing the Ottawa Senators 5-2. With 112 points, the Bruins sit one back of the Tampa Bay Lightning for first place in the Atlantic Division and can overtake the Lightning if they defeat the Panthers tonight.

As for the Lightning, they picked up a point in a 3-2 overtime loss to the Carolina Hurricanes. The Bolts overcame a 2-0 deficit to force the extra frame.

The Toronto Maple Leafs set a franchise record for most points in a season (105) with a 4-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens. Leafs goalie Frederik Andersen established a franchise record for single-season victories with 38. The Leafs will face either the  Lightning or Bruins in the opening round.

Filip Forsberg tallied a hat trick as the Nashville Predators doubled up the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-2. Before the game, the Predators were honored with the Presidents’ Trophy for the best regular-season record. The Blue Jackets’ opening round opponent will be the Washington Capitals.

Capitals’ captain Alex Ovechkin scored his 48th and 49th goals of the season in a 5-3 win over the New Jersey Devils. Ovechkin wins the Richard Trophy as the NHL’s leading goal scorer for the seventh time. Like the Leafs, the Devils await the outcome of tonight’s Bruins-Panthers game to determine if their first-round opponent will be Boston or Tampa Bay.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ovechkin narrowly missed reaching the 50-goal mark for the eighth time in his career. Only Wayne Gretzky and Mike Bossy (nine 50-goal seasons) have more. 

Connor McDavid picked up two assists and Leon Draisaitl scored the winning goal as the Edmonton Oilers edged the Vancouver Canucks 3-2. Canucks stars Daniel and Henrik Sedin were held without a point in what was their final NHL game but were feted by the Oilers and their fans following the game. McDavid finished the season with 108 points to win the Art Ross Trophy as the league’s leading scorer for the second straight year.

Winnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck became the first American-born netminder to win 44 games as he backstopped his club to a 4-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. The Jets will face the Minnesota Wild in the opening round.

The Anaheim Ducks secured second place in the Pacific Division by shutting out the Arizona Coyotes 3-0. Ducks winger Corey Perry picked up his 400th career assists. The Ducks hold home-ice advantage in their first-round matchup with the San Jose Sharks.

The Sharks, meanwhile, fell 6-3 to the Minnesota Wild. Jason Zucker scored twice for the Wild and teammate Eric Staal netted his 42nd of the season.

Dallas Stars captain Jamie Benn netted a hat trick in a 4-2 win over the Los Angeles Kings, who’ll face the Vegas Golden Knights in the opening round.

The Golden Knights, meanwhile, were crushed by the Calgary Flames 7-1. Flames rookie Mark Jankowski scored four goals.

John Tavares scored in overtime as the New York Islanders edged the Detroit Red Wings 4-3. Isles forward Anders Lee scored his 40th of the season. The Red Wings also announced they re-signed general manager Ken Holland to a two-year contract. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: You can see the 2018 opening-round playoff bracket here

THE GLOBE AND MAIL: 15 people were killed and 14 injured when a bus carrying the Humboldt Broncos of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League collided with a semi-trailer late-Friday afternoon. Among the dead is Jaxon Joseph, son of former NHL defenseman Chris Joseph.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This tragedy overshadowed yesterday’s news and shook up the tight-knit hockey community. My sincere condolences to the families of the dead and injured, the Broncos organization and the town of Humboldt. A GoFundMe page has been set up to help the families. 


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 2, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 2, 2018

Game recaps, another milestone for Alex Ovechkin, stars of the month and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The Washington Capitals clinched the Metropolitan Division crown with a 3-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Washington goalie Philipp Grubauer made 36 saves for the win. Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin reached another milestone, playing in his 1,000th career NHL game. He was held off the score sheet in this contest. Teammate Jay Beagle left the game with an upper-body injury and is unavailable for Monday’s match against the St. Louis Blues. 

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin played in his 1,000th NHL game on Sunday in a 3-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins (Photo via NHL Images)

 SPECTOR’S NOTE: With 45 goals this season, Ovechkin also has three games left to reach 50 goals for the eighth time in his career. 

Third-period goals by Adam Henrique and Ryan Kesler set the stage for Ondrej Kase’s overtime winner as the Anaheim Ducks overcame a two-goal deficit to beat the Colorado Avalanche 4-3. Tyson Jost scored twice for Colorado. The win moved the Ducks (95 points) into third place in the Pacific Division, while the Avalanche (93 points) cling to a one-point lead over the St. Louis Blues for the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference.

Claude Giroux scored twice, including the winner in overtime, as the Philadelphia Flyers edged the Boston Bruins 4-3. With 94 points, the Flyers sit one point above the New Jersey Devils in the first Eastern Conference wild-card berth and within two points of second place in the Metropolitan Division.

The Devils (93 points), meanwhile, got third-period goals by Nico Hischier and Taylor Hall to beat the Montreal Canadiens 2-1. Sitting in the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot, the Devils widened their lead over the Florida Panthers by seven points, with the Panthers (77 games played) holding two games in hand.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That was a big win for the Devils, improving their chances of clinching their first playoff spot since 2012. The Panthers still have a chance to gain ground on New Jersey but their margin of error has narrowed. 

Filip Forsberg scored two goals to give the Nashville Predators a 4-1 victory over the Tampa Bay Lightning. Bolts captain Steven Stamkos left the game with a lower-body injury. An update on his condition is expected today. The loss put the Lightning (108 points) two points behind the Bruins for second place in the Eastern Conference standings, while the Preds (113 points) widened their lead for top spot in the Western Conference over the Vegas Golden Knights by six points.

Edmonton Oilers captain Connor McDavid, Boston Bruins winger Brad Marchand and Anaheim Ducks goaltender John Gibson are the NHL’s stars of the month for March 2018. Arizona Coyotes forward Clayton Keller was named rookie of the month

TSN: The NHL department of player safety fined Columbus Blue Jackets defenseman Ian Cole $5,000.00 for a dangerous trip on Vancouver Canucks center Brandon Sutter during a recent game. 

WGR 550: Buffalo Sabres defenseman Victor Antipin is sidelined indefinitely after suffering multiple injuries resulting from a hit from behind by Nashville Predators winger Scott Hartnell on Saturday. Antipin has a concussion, a broken nose, facial lacerations and requires dental work. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Hartnell received a five-minute boarding major and a game misconduct but won’t face supplemental discipline. “”It was unfortunate, and I feel really bad about it,” Hartnell said. That’s cold comfort for Antipin. 


NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 21, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 21, 2018

Game recaps, injury updates and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin tallied his 602nd career goal and collected two assists in a 4-3 win over the Dallas Stars. Ovechkin moved past Jari Kurri into 19th among the NHL’s all-time goal-scoring leaders. The Capitals (91 points) widen their lead in the Metropolitan Division over the Pittsburgh Penguins by four points. As for the struggling Stars (84 points), they’re two points out of a wild-card spot in the Western Conference. Stars forwards Jason Spezza (back) and Brett Ritchie (lower-body) missed the game with injuries.

The New York Islanders kept their fading playoff hopes alive by defeating the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-1. Mathew Barzal had a goal and an assist for the Isles (72 points), who sit 10 points out of a wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference.

Artemi Panarin’s hat trick carried the Columbus Blue Jackets to a 5-3 win over the New York Rangers (Photo via NHL Images)

A hat trick by Artemi Panarin carried the Columbus Blue Jackets to a 5-3 victory over the New York Rangers. It was the Jackets’ ninth straight win, moving them into a tie with the Penguins in the Metro Division.

The Florida Panthers moved within one point of the New Jersey Devils by downing the Ottawa Senators 7-2. Jared McCann had a goal and two assists. The Senators were playing without captain Erik Karlsson, who was with his wife following the loss of their unborn child. The couple was expecting a son in April.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: My condolences to Karlsson and his wife. The family asks that we respect their wishes for privacy during this difficult time. 

The Colorado Avalanche defeated the Chicago Blackhawks 5-1, eliminating the latter from playoff contention for the first time in 10 years. Avs goaltender Semyon Varlamov made 44 saves,  Alex Kerfoot scored two goals and center Nathan MacKinnon (two assists) moved into second place in the NHL scoring race with 91 points. With 88 points, Colorado sits two points up on the Anaheim Ducks for the first wild-card berth in the Western Conference.

The Vegas Golden Knights’ 4-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks was overshadowed by the first-period departure of goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury after being struck in the mask by a shot from Brandon Sutter. Vegas coach Gerard Gallant couldn’t provide a post-game update. More information could be made available today. 

Kyle Connor scored both goals for the Winnipeg Jets in a 2-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings. Jets sniper Patrik Laine left the game in the second period after injuring his left leg blocking a shot by Kings defenseman Alec Martinez. Winnipeg coach Paul Maurice doesn’t consider the injury serious. Earlier in the day, the Jets revealed blueliner Jacob Trouba was diagnosed with a concussion. No word as to how long he’ll be sidelined. 

A ten-game winless skid is over for the Detroit Red Wings as they edged the Philadelphia Flyers 5-4 on a shootout goal by Frans Nielsen. The loss dropped the Flyers (86 points) into the first Eastern Conference wild-card spot. Dylan Larkin scored twice and set up another for the Red Wings. Flyers captain Claude Giroux collected three assists.

The Tampa Bay Lightning overcame a 3-1 deficit with three unanswered third-period goals to nip the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-3. Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy set a franchise record with his 41st win of the season. James van Riemsdyk scored twice for the Leafs. Tampa Bay winger Ryan Callahan left the game in the first period with what appeared to be an injured right shoulder. A further update could be provided later today.  

Brent Burns collected three assists as the San Jose Sharks picked up their fifth straight win by hammering the New Jersey Devils 6-2. With 91 points, the Sharks hold a four-point lead over the Los Angeles Kings for second place in the Pacific Division.

Leon Draisaitl had a goal and three assists as the Edmonton Oilers crushed the Carolina Hurricanes 7-3. Oilers winger Pontus Aberg had a goal and two assists.

BOSTON HERALD: Bruins winger David Backes (leg injury) is unlikely to play in the club’s upcoming four-game road trip. 

TSN: “The league announced Tuesday that GMs want the final decision on video reviews of goalie interference to rest with the hockey operations department in Toronto instead of referees on the ice.”