NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 15, 2020

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 15, 2020

The Dallas Stars are the Western Conference champions, plus updates on the Lightning, Islanders and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: For the first time in 20 years, the Dallas Stars are Western Conference champions and headed to the Stanley Cup Final. Denis Gurianov tallied an overtime power-play goal as the Stars overcame a 2-0 deficit to defeat the Vegas Golden Knights 3-2 in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final.

The Golden Knights held a 2-0 lead until Jamie Benn scored at 9:54 of the third period. Joel Kiviranta scored the tying goal on the power play at 16:13, setting the stage for Gurianov’s series winner.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This series looked like it was heading to Game 6 when Reilly Smith made it 2-0 early in the third for the Golden Knights. Benn’s goal, however, shifted the game’s momentum. He finished this series with three goals and five points. This was the second straight series where Gurianov scored the series winner. He leads the Stars with nine goals in this postseason.

Penalties proved costly for the Golden Knights as the Stars tallied the tying and winning goals with the man advantage. The second one was a heartbreaker as rookie defenseman Zach Whitecloud was called for delay of game after he inadvertently clearing the puck over the boards.

The Golden Knights head into the offseason with some issues to address. You can read about them in today’s NHL Rumor Mill.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning captain Steven Stamkos was on the ice with half of his teammates for yesterday’s optional practice. He’s still not ready to play or participate in full practices but the club still hasn’t ruled out a possible return in the playoffs.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Perhaps Stamkos might return if the Lightning advance to the Stanley Cup Final against Dallas. The Bolts hold a 3-1 series lead over the New York Islanders in the Eastern Conference Final with Game 5 tonight.

NEW YORK POST: Islanders head coach Barry Trotz could shake up his top line for Game 5 by making Brock Nelson the first-line center and moving Mathew Barzal into the second-line spot. He could also elevate winger Derick Brassard or center Jean-Gabriel Pageau to a top-six role.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: We’ll find out tonight what changes, if any, Trotz has in store for his roster. He must do something to counter the Lightning’s top line of Brayden Point, Nikita Kucherov and Ondrej Palat.

THE SCORE: The NHL has recorded no positive COVID-19 tests for the eighth straight week.

CALGARY SUN: The Flames have made interim coach Geoff Ward their full-time head coach.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: No surprise there given the support Flames general manager Brad Treliving gave Ward throughout this season.

TSN’s Pierre LeBrun reports NHL teams have until 5 pm ET on Oct. 7 to submit qualifying offers to their respective restricted free agents. The RFAs can begin signing them at noon ET on Oct. 9. Those offers expire at 5 pm ET on Oct. 18.

US HOCKEY HALL OF FAME: Former NHL star and current University of Wisconsin head coach Tony Granato has been inducted into the U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame. He joins Dean Blais, Jenny Potter and Jerry York among the class of 2020.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to all of this year’s inductees.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 21, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 21, 2019

Henrik Lundqvist ties Curtis Joseph on the all-time wins list, the NHLPA files a grievance on behalf of Dustin Byfuglien, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist picked up his 454th career victory in a 4-1 win over the Washington Capitals. He ties Curtis Joseph for fifth on the all-time list. Rangers winger Artemi Panarin extended his points streak to 12 games with a goal and an assist. Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom missed the game with an upper-body injury, while teammate Garnet Hathaway received a three-game suspension for spitting on Anaheim Ducks defenseman Erik Gudbranson.

New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist picked up his 454th career win (Photo via NHL Images).

Brady Tkachuk scored in overtime as the Ottawa Senators edged the Montreal Canadiens 2-1. Senators center Jean-Gabriel Pageau tallied his team-leading 13th goal of the season. The Senators played without winger Bobby Ryan, who entered the NHL/NHLPA assistance program. Before the game, the Canadiens honored Guy Carbonneau for his induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame.

HEADLINES

WINNIPEG SUN: The NHLPA filed a grievance yesterday against the league on behalf of Jets defenseman Dustin Byfuglien challenging his suspension. Byfuglien was suspended by the club for failing to show up for training camp. It was initially believed he was taking time to consider his playing future. The situation took a turn earlier this month when he underwent surgery to repair his ankle.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Byfuglien isn’t being paid during this suspension. There have been questions over why he didn’t show up to training camp, fail his medical, undergo surgery, go on long-term injury reserve, and receive payment. Both sides have kept quiet on the matter, but differing opinions have emerged.

The Jets reportedly claimed Byfuglien, who was hampered by an ankle injury last season, passed his exit medical at the end of last season. The Byfuglien camp apparently disputed this, believing their client hadn’t fully recovered. The grievance will be heard by an independent arbiter soon, likely early in the new year.

STLTODAY.COM: Blues winger Sammy Blais requires wrist surgery and will be sidelined for at least 10 weeks. The club signed free-agent winger Troy Brouwer to a one-year, two-way contract worth $750K at the NHL level.

WGR550: Buffalo Sabres assistant coach Don Granato is back behind the bench after being sidelined by severe pneumonia for several weeks.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 2, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 2, 2019

Evander Kane suspended plus updates on Sidney Crosby, Dylan Larkin, David Krejci, and more in your season-opening NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NBC SPORTS BAY AREA: San Jose Sharks winger Evander Kane received a three-game suspension for shoving an on-ice official during a preseason game against the Vegas Golden Knights. 

San Jose Sharks winger Evander Kane receives a three-game suspension (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kane’s fortunate he didn’t receive more than that. His suspension had some Sharks fans wondering if it might open the door for a return by Patrick Marleau but that’s not going to happen

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby rejoined his teammates in practice yesterday for the first time since suffering an undisclosed injury over the weekend. Meanwhile, the club is expected to put sidelined winger Bryan Rust (upper body) on long-term injury reserve to start the season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Placing Rust and defenseman Zach Trotman on LTIR, along with yesterday’s demotions of goaltender Casey DeSmith and defenseman John Marino, ensures the Penguins will be cap compliant to open the season. 

THE DETROIT NEWS: Red Wings center Dylan Larkin left practice yesterday following a collision. The club will learn more about his status later today. 

NBC SPORTS BOSTON: Bruins center David Krejci (lower-body) remains uncertain for the club’s season-opener on Thursday against Dallas. Meanwhile, contract extension talks have begun between Bruins management and defenseman Torey Krug. 

WINNIPEG SUN: Jets center Bryan Little (concussion) is sidelined indefinitely while blueliner Nathan Beaulieu (upper body) will miss at least four weeks. The Jets also lost goaltender Eric Comrie via waivers to the Arizona Coyotes and claimed Chicago Blackhawks defenseman Carl Dahlstrom off waivers. 

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Minnesota Wild defenseman Greg Pateryn (sports hernia surgery) will be sidelined up to six weeks. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE: The Canadiens demoted forward Ryan Poehling to their AHL affiliate in Laval. A concussion limited him to just two preseason games. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s only a matter of time until Poehling is back with the Canadiens. He’s a promising young forward with a potentially bright future in Montreal. 

NHL.COM: The New York Rangers agreed to a one-year, two-way contract with forward Micheal Haley. 

WGR 550: Buffalo Sabres assistant coach Don Granato is on a leave of absence after being hospitalized with severe pneumonia. He’s expected to make a full recovery.

SPORTSNET: After 13 seasons with ten NHL clubs, forward Lee Stempniak has announced his retirement. In 911 career games, Stempniak tallied 203 goals and 266 points in 469 games. His best season was his sophomore campaign in 2006-07, tallying 27 goals and 52 points with the St. Louis Blues. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Best wishes to Stempniak and his family in their future endeavors. 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 26, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 26, 2019

Fallout from Auston Matthews’ disorderly conduct charge, Guy Lafleur to undergo heart surgery, Cammi Granato makes NHL history, plus the latest on Brandon Dubinsky, Alex Galchenyuk, and more in today’s morning coffee headlines. 

TORONTO SUN/TORONTO STAR: The Toronto Maple Leafs knew nothing about Auston Matthews’ alleged disorderly conduct incident in May until the report emerged earlier this week. General manager Kyle Dubas claimed he discovered it on Twitter and was upset and disappointed when he learned of the 22-year-old center’s actions. Dubas declined to comment about how this incident would affect the club’s decision to name a new captain.

Auston Matthews did not inform the Toronto Maple Leafs that he was facing a domestic conduct charge in Arizona (Photo via NHL Images).

Matthews is alleged to have attempted to enter a security guard’s vehicle outside his Scottsdale, Arizona condo while she was doing paperwork. After she exited the vehicle, he is alleged to have dropped his trousers and grabbed his buttocks through his underwear as he walked away. He and several friends were reportedly intoxicated at the time.

Matthews made a statement yesterday expressing regret for his actions. He admitted it was a big mistake on his part to try and deal with the issue privately. 

THE SCORE: Body cam footage of the police interview with Matthews’ accuser has been released. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: By not informing the Leafs of what happened and trying to keep it quiet, Matthews made this situation much worse. TSN’s Rick Westhead reports Matthews could face several months of jail time and a fine if convicted, though it’s doubtful he’ll see any time behind bars. 

LE JOURNAL DE MONTREAL: Hall-of-Famer Guy Lafleur will undergo quadruple heart bypass surgery today. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Here’s hoping the operation is successful and Lafleur makes a full, speedy recovery. 

NBC SPORTS: The NHL’s Seattle expansion franchise named Cammi Granato as the league’s first female scout. Granato captained the U.S. Women’s Hockey Team to gold in the 1998 Winter Olympics and was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2010. She joins Ulf Samuelsson, Stu Barnes, Dave Hunter, and John Goodwin on Seattle’s scouting staff. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to Granato on this history-making appointment. 

TSN: Columbus Blue Jackets center Brandon Dubinsky is sidelined indefinitely with a wrist injury and will likely to miss the start of the season. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Dubinsky missed 21 games last season with various injuries and 18 games in 2017-18 with a fractured orbital bone. 

TRIBLIVE.COM: The Pittsburgh Penguins held winger Alex Galchenyuk out of last night’s preseason game against Detroit as a precautionary measure. He’s dealing with a nagging undisclosed injury. 

CBS SPORTS: The Florida Panthers released Troy Brouwer from his professional tryout offer. 

Carolina Hurricanes winger Saku Maenalanen has signed a one-year contract with the KHL’s Helsinki Jokerit.

WGR 550: Buffalo Sabres defenseman Jake McCabe will miss the rest of the preseason with an upper-body injury. 

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Former NHL player Tom Laidlaw as part of the cast of “Survivor: Island of the Idols”.