NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – December 29, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – December 29, 2023

The Hurricanes’ Sebastian Aho achieves a franchise first in his club’s win over the Canadiens, a milestone game for Flyers coach John Tortorella, the latest injury updates, the Capitals finally sign Ethan Bear, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: Hurricanes center Sebastian Aho collected four assists and Andrei Svechnikov tallied a hat trick in a 5-3 victory over the Montreal Canadiens. Brent Burns set up three goals and Jesper Fast scored twice as the Hurricanes improved to 19-13-4 to move into third place in the Metropolitan Division with 42 points. Mitchell Stephens, Mike Matheson and Josh Anderson scored for the Canadiens as they slipped to 15-14-5.

Carolina Hurricanes center Sebastian Aho (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Aho became the first player in Hurricanes/Whalers history to collect four points in consecutive games and the first player in the NHL to do so since Jeremy Roenick on Nov. 25-26, 1999.

A three-goal second period powered the Philadelphia Flyers to a 4-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks. Joel Farabee had a goal and an assist while Samuel Ersson made 18 saves before leaving the game early in the third period with an undisclosed injury. The Flyers improved to 19-11-4 and hold second place in the Metro Division with 42 points. Teddy Blueger scored for the 23-10-3 Canucks as they remain in first place in the Western Conference with 49 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a milestone game for Flyers head coach John Tortorella as he moved into 10th place on the all-time wins list for NHL coaches with 723. The Flyers have the same number of points as the Hurricanes but sit ahead of them with two games in hand.

The Vegas Golden Knights snapped a four-game losing skid by holding off the Los Angeles Kings by a score of 3-2. Logan Thompson stopped 32 shots while Jack Eichel, Michael Amadio and William Karlsson scored for the Golden Knights (22-10-5) move into a tie with the Vancouver Canucks with 49 points. Anze Kopitar had a goal and an assist while Trevor Moore also scored for the Kings (20-8-4) as they remain in third place in the Pacific Division with 44 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Canucks still hold first in the West with one more victory as well as a game in hand.

A four-goal first period and 25 saves by goaltender Stuart Skinner gave the Edmonton Oilers a 5-0 shutout over the San Jose Sharks. Zach Hyman tallied his 20th of the season as the Oilers improved to 16-15-1. Kaapo Kahkonen stopped 17 of 18 shots in relief of Magnus Chrona for the 9-24-3 Sharks.


THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Blue Jackets defenseman Zach Werenski is out with an undisclosed leg injury on a week-to-week basis.

SPORTSNET: Toronto Maple Leafs defenseman Mark Giordano returns to action on Friday against the Blue Jackets after missing a month with a broken finger.

CBS SPORTS: Nashville Predators blueliner Tyson Barrie is listed as day-to-day with an upper-body injury.

THE SCORE: The Washington Capitals officially signed Ethan Bear on Thursday to a two-year contract with an average annual value of $2.0625 million. The 26-year-old defenseman is returning to action following offseason shoulder surgery.

TSN: The Buffalo Sabres placed center Tage Thompson on their non-roster list as he is dealing with a personal issue.

NEW JERSEY HOCKEY NOW: The Devils sent goaltender Akira Schmid to their AHL affiliate in Utica after recalling Nico Daws. They’re hoping Schmid can regain his rhythm after struggling this season.

DAILY FACEOFF: Detroit Red Wings goalie Michael Hutchison and Sabres forward Tyson Jost hit the waiver wire on Thursday.

Nikolai Khabibulin is returning to action as the 50-year-old goaltender signed a one-year deal with the KHL’s Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod. His last professional game was on Nov. 16, 2013, with the Chicago Blackhawks.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Former NHL defenseman Cody Franson has been hired as an assistant coach with the AHL’s Iowa Wild.

THE SEATTLE TIMES: A lawsuit alleges the Kraken violated the Seattle Metropolitans trademark with their Winter Classic jerseys.