NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 15, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 15, 2019

Game recaps, stars of the week, bye week schedule released, Ducks trade Andrew Cogliano to the Stars, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: Goaltender Frederik Andersen’s return from a groin injury couldn’t prevent the Toronto Maple Leafs from dropping a 6-3 decision to the Colorado Avalanche. Carl Soderberg led the way for the Avs with a hat trick. The Leafs have lost four of their last six. Defenseman Jake Gardiner was the target of unhappy Toronto boo-birds, prompting his teammates to come to his defense in post-game interviews.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gardiner didn’t have a good game but that loss wasn’t solely his fault. The Leafs didn’t play well in this game and haven’t looked good in most of their last six contests. 

A four-point performance by Patrick Kane couldn’t prevent the Chicago Blackhawks from falling 8-5 to the New Jersey Devils. Kyle Palmieri and Blake Coleman each scored twice and Travis Zajac collected three points for the Devils, handing the Blackhawks their fourth straight loss. 

James van Riemsdyk’s hat trick carried the Philadelphia Flyers to a 7-4 win over the Minnesota Wild (Photo via NHL Images).

James van Riemsdyk tallied a hat trick as the Philadelphia Flyers beat the Minnesota Wild 7-4. Wayne Simmonds and Nolan Patrick each scored twice for the Flyers. 

The St. Louis Blues got their first three-game win streak of the season by downing the Washington Capitals 4-1. Blues winger David Perron scored a goal to extend his points streak to 11 games. Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin netted his league-leading 33rd goal while teammate Brooks Orpik played his 1,000th career NHL game. 

Jeff Petry potted the game-winner in overtime as the Montreal Canadiens edged the Boston Bruins 3-2. Canadiens goalie Carey Price kicked out 41 shots. 

Edmonton Oilers forwards Zach Kassian and Milan Lucic each scored twice in a 7-2 beatdown of the Buffalo Sabres. Oilers netminder Mikko Koskinen made 41 stops. 

Calgary Flames defenseman Mark Giordano, St. Louis Blues goaltender Jordan Binnington, and Pittsburgh Penguins left wing Jake Guentzel are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Jan. 13. 

The NHL also released its bye week schedule

THE SCORE: Details have emerged over the incident that resulted in the Columbus Blue Jackets withholding goalie Sergei Bobrovsky from last Thursday’s game against Nashville. After being pulled during Tuesday’s loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning, Bobrovsky went straight to the dressing room, removed his equipment, showered and changed into street clothes rather than return to the bench. Following the game, several players pulled Bobrovsky aside and spoke with him before the team’s flight. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The report indicates Jackets coach John Tortorella was furious with Bobrovsky, as his antics left the club without a backup for Joonas Korpisalo in case he had to exit the game. It’s been a frustrating season for Bobrovsky but that doesn’t excuse his actions. Following a team meeting on Friday, Bobrovsky apologized and claimed he and the team put the incident behind them. 

TSN: The Anaheim Ducks traded winger Andrew Cogliano to the Dallas Stars for center Devin Shore.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With the Ducks having dropped 11 straight games, general manager Bob Murray has decided to shake up his roster a bit rather than fire head coach Bob Murray. They’ve dealt away experience and durability in Cogliano for a younger, faster and less expensive forward in Shore, who has just 17 points in 42 games. The Stars will look to Cogliano to provide a boost to a leadership core that recently came under criticism from team CEO Jim Lites. 

NBC SPORTS: The San Jose Sharks re-signed winger Marcus Sorensen to a two-year contract worth an annual average value of $1.5 million.

SPORTSNET: The Nashville Predators and New York Rangers made a minor-league swap, with the Predators sending forward Connor Brickley to the Rangers for Cole Schneider. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Former NHL defenseman Josh Gorges announced his retirement. He spent 13 seasons with the San Jose Sharks, Montreal Canadiens, and Buffalo Sabres. He had 124 points in 783 regular season games and nine points in 68 postseason contests.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Gorges spent over seven seasons with the Canadiens and became one of the league’s better defensive blueliners during that time. 

NHL Rumor Mill – February 22, 2018

NHL Rumor Mill – February 22, 2018

Latest on Erik Karlsson plus updates on the Red Wings, Sabres and Blue Jackets more in your NHL rumor mill.

Speculation of an Erik Karlsson trade is growing (Photo via NHL Images).


TSN: Bob McKenzie reports Ottawa Senators general manager Pierre Dorion has been, and still is, engaged in some level of trade dialogue regarding defenseman Erik Karlsson with perhaps more than half-a-dozen teams. If the Senators get an “acceptable” offer, Karlsson could be dealt by Monday’s 3 PM ET trade deadline. To the best of his knowledge, McKenzie said Dorion hasn’t received any formal offers for Karlsson and he’s more likely laying the framework of what a possible deal could look like.

The talk is it could take five, six or seven piece, consisting of good young players, top prospects and first-round picks. However, if a team is also willing to take Senators winger Bobby Ryan in the deal, the price could be discounted. Ryan, 31, has four years left on his contract at an annual cap hit of $7.25 million. That provision, however, could severely limit the number of interested teams. Karlsson, meanwhile, is eligible next summer to become an unrestricted free agent.

McKenzie said the Tampa Bay Lightning are likely to lead the Karlsson trade speculation. They’re loaded with picks and prospects, but the Senators could seek promising center Brayden Point, as well as budding young defenseman Mikhail Sergachev, as part of the return. Moving Point to acquire Karlsson would fill a hole on the blueline but create another at forward. McKenzie believes the next 24-48 hours will determine if a Karlsson trade goes down, though he feels it’s still a big “if” at this point.

McKenzie’s colleague Pierre LeBrun reports a Western Conference GM suggests Dorion could be laying the groundwork for a possible Karlsson trade in the offseason. While playoff contenders could be willing to pay more now to acquire Karlsson for two playoff runs, they could be unwilling to dip too much into their roster core. An offseason deal, on the other hand, would involve more teams with more salary cap and roster flexibility.

OTTAWA SUN: Bruce Garrioch reports there’s rampant recent speculation about Karlsson. He said Dorion isn’t shopping his captain and franchise player but teams have been calling to inquire into Karlsson’s long-term future in Ottawa. Garrioch cites three league executives expressing doubt Karlsson gets deal by the deadline, though another suggested the Sens could strike while the iron is hot. The Senators won’t know how much it could cost to re-sign Karlsson until July 1, when they can open contract extension talks. If it appears it will be difficult to re-sign him, they’ll have a good idea which teams could be interested in him based on the inquiries they receive now.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As I noted yesterday, a Karlsson deal at the trade deadline is possible but a lot of things must fall into place to make it happen.

First, the interested parties must be on Karlsson’s trade list. If they’re not, and if he’s unwilling to broaden his list, he won’t be going anywhere at the deadline.

If the team is on his list, do they have sufficient cap space to take on his $6.25 million cap hit or the combined $13.5 million if they’re to take on Karlsson and Ryan? As per Cap Friendly, not many teams do right now. Cup contenders, such as Tampa Bay, will have to ship out a big chunk of change to make this fit. Even if the Sens were willing to pick up part of Karlsson’s cap hit (or part of the combined hit for Karlsson and Ryan), that’s still a potentially hefty cap hit to take on at this point in the season.

Third, of course, is the asking price. Five, six or seven pieces involving young players, top prospects and first-round picks is a helluva lot. For the club acquiring Karlsson or Karlsson-Ryan, such a deal could adversely affect their overall roster depth and team chemistry. Even if you get a discount by taking on Ryan as part of the deal, you’ve got to figure the Sens will still want a good young NHL player, a top prospect and a first-round pick.

The Lightning are often listed as being a front-runner for Karlsson. However, Tampa Bay Times’ Joe Smith doesn’t see Lightning GM Steve Yzerman overpaying at the trade deadline, citing Yzerman’s comments that deadline deals don’t guarantee a Stanley Cup.  

Again, it’s possible Karlsson could be dealt at the trade deadline. Such a deal, however, seems more likely to occur this summer, when clubs are flush with cap dollars and more willing to swing trades involving superstars.


OTTAWA SUN:  Bruce Garrioch also reports the Senators are getting “boatloads of interest” in forwards Mike Hoffman, Derick Brassard, Zack Smith and Jean-Gabriel Pageau and defenceman Cody Ceci. The Pittsburgh Penguins, Winnipeg Jets and New York Rangers could have interest in centers Brassard and Pageau. Garrioch suggests Hoffman or Smith could be good fits with the Calgary Flames, Boston Bruins or Vegas Golden Knights. Moving Ceci might not make sense if the Sens are contemplating a move of Karlsson. Veteran defenseman Johnny Oduya could be moved.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: Helene St. James lists defenseman Mike Green, forwards Gustav Nyquist, Andreas Athanasiou and Luke Glendening and blueliner Xavier Ouellet as Red Wings who could be on the move by the trade deadline. Green is open-mined to waiving his no-trade clause. Nyquist would also have to waive his no-trade and the Wings might have to pick up part of his $4.75-million cap hit. St. James speculates Athanasiou could be a good trade chip if they get an offer of a high-end defense prospect.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Senators appear reluctant to move Brassard or Pageau because it could adversely affect their depth at center. They could be less likely to move Hoffman because of the chemistry he’s established with Matt Duchene. Smith or Oduya seem like more likely trade options. I agree with Garrioch that trading Ceci seems less likely if the Sens are considering an eventual move of Karlsson.

Green appears a goner by the deadline. Indeed, I think he could end up with the Lightning at the trade deadline, as he’d be a much more affordable option than blowing their brains out on a Karlsson trade. Nyquist and Tomas Tatar have surfaced in recent trade chatter but the Wings will probably only move one of them. Moving Athanasiou for a top defense prospect seems like a move that happens in the offseason. 


THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Steve Gorten interviewed Blue Jackets GM Jarmo Kekalainen on the state of his team and possible plans for the upcoming trade deadline. Kekalainen said he’s going to try not to move a roster core player, such as Boone Jenner, in search of help for his lineup. He feels the biggest remedy for his team is for them to start playing on the level they should. He also doesn’t want to give up his top prospects, young players or his first-round pick in 2018 for playoff rentals.

Kekalainen hopes to get a substantial piece for defenseman Jack Johnson, who requested a trade earlier this season. If the return is comparable to what the Minnesota Wild gave up last season for Martin Hanzal (a first- and a second-round pick), they might have to think about that. 

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson reports the Blue Jackets, Pittsburgh Penguins and Toronto Maple Leafs could be interested in Oilers center Mark Letestu. 

WGR 550: Paul Hamilton reports Buffalo Sabres left wing Evander Kane believes he’ll be moved by the trade deadline. Hamilton also suggests defenseman Josh Gorges and forwards Benoit Pouliot and Jacob Josefson could also become trade candidates.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With the Jackets in danger of falling out of the playoff race, Kekalainen could be feeling pressure to make a significant move at the trade deadline. It sounds, however, like he’s not going to just ship out Johnson for just a draft pick. Perhaps  he’d like to use Johnson as a trade chip to perhaps bring in a forward who can help his club right way. I expect Kekalainen will do something by the deadline, but it remains to be seen if it’s a substantial deal. 

I expect Kane will get deal by Monday. Don’t see much interest in Gorges, Pouliot or Josefson but that doesn’t mean one of them couldn’t be dealt. 


NHL Rumor Mill – February 17, 2018

NHL Rumor Mill – February 17, 2018

The Blues and Senators could be talking trade, updated TSN trade bait list, the latest on the Bruins and more in your NHL rumor mill.

The St. Louis Blues are reportedly interested in Ottawa Senators winger Mike Hoffman (above) and teammate Derick Brassard (Photo via NHL Images).


SPORTNET: Josh Beneteau cite’s NHL.com’s Lou Korac reporting a source claiming the St. Louis Blues and Ottawa Senators are engaged in strong trade discussions regarding Senators forwards Mike Hoffman and Derick Brassard. If a deal is done, the Blues would acquire one or the other but not both. A potential package from the Blues to the Sens could include forwards Vladimir Sobotka, Patrick Berglund and Robby Fabbri.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Blues general manager Doug Armstrong has indicated he’s seeking “hockey trades” rather than rentals. In other words, he wants players with term remaining on their contracts rather than pending UFAs who could bolt this summer. Hoffman or Brassard would fit the bill and could help bolster the Blues’ offense. 

I can understand the Senators interest in Fabbri, but his back-to-back knee injuries are a concern. Frequent reports out of Ottawa claimed the Senators wanted to get younger, but taking on the 30-year-old Sobotka and the 29-year-old Berglund flies in the face of that plan. The only reason I can see why the Senators would want those two is they carry reasonably affordable contracts


TSN: Frank Seravalli added four new names to his 40-name trade-bait list in Ottawa Senators center Derick Brassard (fourth), teammate Bobby Ryan (39th), Arizona Coyotes forward Max Domi (11th) and Anaheim Ducks center Antoine Vermette (26th). Brassard could be an attractive option in a market thin on quality centers. The Coyotes aren’t actively shopping Domi but “as many as 20 teams” are believed to have investigated his availability.

He also dropped Vegas Golden Knights forwards James Neal and David Perron as they seem likely to stay put at the deadline. Defenseman Dion Phaneuf was also dropped following his trade this week from Ottawa to Los Angeles, while it’s unlikely the Buffalo Sabres will trade forward Sam Reinhart.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ottawa pundits have consistently expressed the view that Brassard might not be available, but that could change if the Sens get a significant offer for him (see above). Unless the Sens are willing to pick up a big chunk of Ryan’s $7.25 million annual cap hit or take back a toxic contract in return, I doubt he’ll be moved.

Given Domi’s struggles this season I don’t think the Coyotes will move him while his value is low. He’s a restricted free agent this summer lacking arbitration rights so they’re not under any pressure to trade him. If the Ducks become sellers they could test Vermette’s trade value before the Feb. 26 deadline.


NBC SPORTS BOSTON/THE BOSTON GLOBE: Joe Haggerty cites a reports by the Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson saying he’s heard the New York Rangers would want young Boston Bruns forward Jake DeBrusk included in any potential deal involving Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh. Haggerty also believes the Blueshirts would want defenseman Brandon Carlo and a first-round pick included in the deal.

The Globe’s Kevin Paul Dupont also noted Matheson’s report, adding rumors have also linked the Bruins to Edmonton Oilers left wing Patrick Maroon and Vancouver Canucks forward Thomas Vanek.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Haggerty cautions Bruins GM Don Sweeney to tread carefully in the trade market and not do anything to significantly alter a Bruins’ roster that’s challenging for the Presidents’ Trophy. Removing multiple players to add someone like McDonagh could adversely affect team chemistry. Sweeney could make a bold move at the deadline, but with his club playing very well over the past three months, there’s really very little reason for him to do so. If he adds, it could be for an affordable depth forward.


WGR 550: TSN’s Darren Dreger said Friday he thinks the Buffalo Sabres could move veteran defenseman Josh Gorges at the trade deadline. He’s in the final season of his contract the Sabres are willing to absorb half of his $3.9-million cap hit. He speculates the St. Louis Blues could seek a depth defenseman and believes the Winnipeg Jets have kicked the tires.




NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 1, 2017

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – January 1, 2017

The Columbus Blue Jackets celebrate their 15th consecutive victory.

Game recaps, injury updates and alumni game results in your NHL morning coffee headlines

NHL.COM: The Columbus Blue Jackets extended their winning streak to 15 games while ending the Minnesota’s Wild’s 12-game streak with a 4-2 victory. Cam Atkinson scored twice and Sergei Bobrovsky made 29 saves. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The win matches the second-longest streak in NHL history and puts the Jackets only two games away from tying the record of 17, set by the 1992-93 Pittsburgh Penguins. 

Chris Kreider tallied a hat trick and Henrik Lundqvist moved past Dominik Hasek for most career NHL wins by a European-born goaltender as the New York Rangers defeated the Colorado Avalanche 6-2. Lundqvist picked up his 390th victory. J.T. Miller also scored twice for the Rangers. 

Conor Sheary’s game-tying goal late in the third period set the stage for Evgeni Malkin’s overtime tally as the Pittsburgh Penguins edged the Montreal Canadiens 4-3. Malkin has 43 points on the season, tying him with Edmonton’s Connor McDavid for the league’s points lead. 

Jaromir Jagr netted his 756th career NHL goal and James Reimer kicked out 35 shots in the Florida Panthers 3-1 win over the Dallas Stars. 

Jeff Carter’s 20th goal of the season was also the game winner as the Los Angeles Kings squeaked past the San Jose Sharks 3-2. Earlier in the day, the Sharks announced defenseman Marc-Edouard Vlasic is listed as day-to-day after being struck in the face by a puck during the Sharks’ recent game against the Philadelphia Flyers. 

Jacob Markstrom made 42 saves and Bo Horvat netted the only goal in the shootout to give the Vancouver Canucks a 3-2 win over the Edmonton Oilers. Connor McDavid tallied the game-tying goal that forced overtime and the shootout. 

Tuukka Rask’s 26-save performance backstopped the Boston Bruins to a 3-1 win over the struggling Buffalo Sabres to sweep their season series. Sabres center Johan Larsson suffered a suspected dislocated left wrist and could be out for weeks, while defenseman Josh Gorges suffered a hip pointer.  Earlier in the day, the Bruins announced winger David Backes (concussion) will be sidelined indefinitely. 

The Washington Capitals killed off nine penalties, including four in the first period, on route to a 6-2 win over the New Jersey Devils. The win, however, was overshadowed by Capitals’ forward Tom Wilson hitting Devils defenseman John Moore from behind, resulting in the latter leaving the game on a stretcher. Moore was released from hospital but has been placed on injured reserve with a concussion. There was no penalty called on the play. 

John Tavares and Ryan Strome each netted a goal and an assist to lead the New York Islanders to a 6-2 victory over the Winnipeg Jets. Earlier in the day, Islanders goalie Jaroslav Halak cleared waivers and was sent to their AHL affiliate in Bridgeport. Meanwhile, Jets forward Marko Dano is out for up to eight weeks with a lower-body injury suffered during a recent loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets. 

First-period goals by Michael Frolik, Dennis Wideman, Lance Bouwma and Mikael Backlund carried the Calgary Flames to a 4-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes. 

Nikita Kucherov collected two assists and Andrei Vasilevskiy made 26 saves as the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1. An illness to Hurricanes goalie Eddie Lack saw equipment manager Jorge Alves pressed into service as a backup. With the game out of reach in the final seven seconds, Carolina coach Bill Peters put Alves in the net, allowing him to fulfill his dream of playing an NHL game.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: And that’s a nice way to end 2016. Meanwhile, in other news…

The Detroit Red Wings edged the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-3 in Saturday’s Centennial Classic alumni game at Toronto’s BMO Field, but the highlight was a dazzling first-period glove save by Leafs goalie Mike Palmateer. Unfortunately for the 62-year-old Palmateer, he wrenched his back and had to leave the game. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: That was exactly the type of acrobatic save Palmateer used to make in the 1970s that made him a fan favorite. 

Pierre Turgeon scored twice, including the game winner, as the St. Louis Blues beat the Chicago Blackhawks 8-7 in the Winter Classic alumni game at Busch Stadium in St. Louis. Former Blues star Keith Tkachuk wore a Pavol Demitra jersey in honor of his late teammate, who perished in the 2011 plane crash that killed the entire Lokomotiv Yaroslavl team. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A nice touch by Tkachuk to remember Demitra, who sits fifth on the Blues all-time points list with 493. 

SPORTSNET’s Elliotte Friedman last night reported Nashville Predators defenseman P.K. Subban will meet with team doctors to discuss treatment for a suspected herniated disc. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Subban requires surgery, his season will be over. 

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – December 5, 2016

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – December 5, 2016

Montreal Canadiens captain Max Pacioretty reacts after scoring one of his two goals against the LA Kings.

Montreal Canadiens captain Max Pacioretty reacts after scoring one of his two goals against the LA Kings.

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

NHL.COM: Max Pacioretty scored twice and set up another, Alexander Radulov had a goal and two assists and Paul Byron scored the winner in a shootout as the Montreal Canadiens squeaked past the Los Angeles Kings 5-4. Jeff Carter and Drew Doughty each had a goal and an assist for the Kings. The Habs could be without center Alex Galchenyuk for Tuesday’s game against St. Louis, as he left this game with an apparent leg injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: If Galchenyuk’s out for a lengthy period it’ll be a serious blow to the Canadiens. He’s their leading scorer and top-line center. 

Mikko Koivu netted his fifth career overtime goal as the Minnesota Wild edged the Edmonton Oilers 2-1. The Oilers played part of the game without center Connor McDavid, who briefly left at the behest of a league concussion spotter after his face struck the ice. McDavid suffered no ill-effects and was allowed to return in the third period. 

Wayne Simmonds scored two power-play goals as the Philadelphia Flyers doubled up the Nashville Predators 4-2, giving the Flyers their fifth straight victory.

Johnny Gaudreau scored in his first shift of his first game back from finger surgery as the Calgary Flames hammered the Anaheim Ducks 8-3. Sam Bennett, Matt Stajan and Alex Chiasson each had a goal and two assists for the Flames, while Ryan Kesler scored twice for the Ducks, who played without winger Rikard Rakell (upper-body injury).  

Andrew Copp tallied the game winner to give the Winnipeg Jets a 2-1 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks. Both clubs were playing without their top centers, as the Blackhawks’ Jonathan Toews and the Jets’ Mark Scheifele were sidelined by injuries. 

Danny DeKeyser’s overtime goal gave the Detroit Red Wings a 4-3 win over the New York Islanders. Mike Green also scored twice and Henrik Zetterberg had a goal and an assists for the Wings. 

Phillip Di Guiseppe’s overtime goal, his first tally of the season, lifted the Carolina Hurricanes to a 1-0 win over the struggling Tampa Bay Lightning. Cam Ward made 30 saves for the shutout. 

THE BUFFALO NEWS: The Sabres will welcome back defenseman Dmitry Kulikov (back injury) later this week, but blueliner Josh Gorges will miss weeks with a non-displaced fracture in his foot.