NHL Offseason Lookahead: Calgary Flames
Avalanche lose Mikko Rantanen to injury, Canadiens’ Shea Weber close to returning to action, the three stars of the week, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: The Tampa Bay Lightning won a franchise-record 11th straight game with a 4-3 victory over the Colorado Avalanche. Nikita Kucherov tallied the winner in overtime as the Bolts (85 points) sit one back of the Boston Bruins for first overall in the league standings. It was a costly defeat for the Avs, as winger Mikko Rantanen suffered an upper-body injury (shoulder) that could sideline him for weeks. Earlier in the day, the Avs revealed goaltender Philipp Grubauer remains sidelined indefinitely with a lower-body injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s growing sparking speculation over what moves the Avs will make to bolster their injury-depleted roster. I’ll have more details this morning in the Rumors section.
Calgary Flames winger Andrew Mangiapane tallied his first career NHL hat trick to down the Anaheim Ducks 6-4. With the win, the Flames (68 points) hold the first wild-card berth in the Pacific Division. Jakob Silfverberg had a goal and an assist for the Ducks.
The Arizona Coyotes (68 points) hold the second Western Conference wild-card spot after edging the New York Islanders 2-1. Conor Garland tallied his 20th goal of the season for the Coyotes. Andy Greene collected an assist in his first game with the Isles since being acquired from the New Jersey Devils on Sunday. The Islanders have dropped three straight games.
Vegas Golden Knights goalie Marc-Andre Fleury kicked out 25 shots in a 3-2 win over the Washington Capitals. The Golden Knights (70 points) move into a tie with the Edmonton Oilers for first place in the Pacific Division, but the Oilers hold two games in hand. The Capitals (79 points) cling to a one-point lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins for the top spot in the Metropolitan Division. Washington captain Alex Ovechkin was held scoreless for the fifth straight game and remains stuck at 698 career goals.
Sergei Bobrovsky made 29 saves and Aaron Ekblad collected two assists to give the Florida Panthers a 5-3 victory over the San Jose Sharks. The Panthers (68 points) move within two points of the Toronto Maple Leafs for third place in the Atlantic Division. Following the game, Sharks defenseman Brenden Dillon got emotional when asked if he thought that was his last home game with the Sharks. Dillon is a free agent this summer and considered a trade candidate.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Fans and pundits love to bandy about the names of possible trade candidates. We shouldn’t forget that these are human beings. While the players acknowledge getting traded is part of the business of hockey, it can still be difficult facing the prospect of leaving a team.
Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl, Tampa Bay Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, and former LA Kings winger Tyler Toffoli (now with the Vancouver Canucks) are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Feb. 16.
THE SCORE: Canucks winger Brock Boeser will be sidelined three weeks with a rib injury, while winger Micheal Ferland (concussion) is done for the season.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: This news explains why the Canucks acquired Toffoli from the Kings last night.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens captain Shea Weber has returned to practice with his teammates and could play tonight against the Detroit Red Wings. Weber had suffered an ankle injury that supposedly had him sidelined for six weeks amid speculation it was career-threatening.
THE BUFFALO NEWS: The Sabres have suspended defenseman Zach Bogosian for failing to report to their AHL affiliate after he recently cleared waivers. The suspension removes Bogosian’s $5.14 million salary-cap hit from the Sabres’ books, providing them flexibility as the Feb. 24 trade deadline approaches. The club could negotiate a mutual contract termination with Bogosian.
Mise à jour alignement : Les #Sens ont réclamé au ballotage l’attaquant Jayce Hawryluk des Panthers de la Floride.
— Sens Communications (@Media_Sens) February 17, 2020
Brothers Jack and Quinn Hughes face off for the first time, Tyson Jost tallies his first career hat trick, Jason Zucker apologizes to Bruce Boudreau, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: Jack Hughes emerged the victor in the first meeting against his brother Quinn, scoring the only goal as his New Jersey Devils blanked the Vancouver Canucks 1-0. Devils goaltender MacKenzie Blackwood made 25 saves for the shutout.
Three unanswered second-period goals carried the Montreal Canadiens to a 5-2 win over the St. Louis Blues, handing the latter their fourth straight loss. Carey Price made 32 saves while Canadiens captain Shea Weber had a goal and an assist. Habs defenseman Cale Fleury missed the game with an undisclosed injury.
The Arizona Coyotes extended their points streak to five games by defeating the Ottawa Senators 5-2. Conor Garland and Alex Goligoski had two points each for the Coyotes. In a pre-game ceremony, the Coyotes honored winger Phil Kessel recently playing in his 1,000th career NHL game with a silver stick.
Morgan Rielly scored twice, including the winner in overtime, as the Toronto Maple Leafs edged the Boston Bruins 4-3. The Leafs 2-0 and 3-2 leads before Rielly’s OT heroics. David Pastrnak netted a goal and an assist for the Bruins.
Tyson Jost tallied his first NHL hat trick while Pavel Francouz kicked out 44 shots as the Colorado Avalanche downed the Tampa Bay Lightning 6-2. Colin Wilson collected three assists for the Avs, extending their points streak to eight games.
The Dallas Stars snapped a five-game losing skid by beating the Philadelphia Flyers 4-1. Corey Perry had a goal and two assists while Ben Bishop made 38 stops.
Marc-Andre Fleury made 29 saves as the Vegas Golden Knights blanked the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-0, snapping the latter’s five-game win streak. Paul Stastny, William Karlsson, and Mark Stone were the goal scorers. The Penguins skated without defenseman Brian Dumoulin and center Jared McCann.
The New York Islanders picked up their fourth straight win as they nipped the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-2 on an overtime goal by Brock Nelson. Teammate Anthony Beauvillier collected two assists. Earlier in the day, the Isles placed winger Jordan Eberle (lower body) on injured reserve.
After blowing a 2-0 lead, the Florida Panthers downed the Nashville Predators 3-2 on a shootout goal by Vincent Trocheck. It was a costly win for the Panthers as center Aleksander Barkov left the game in the first period with an undisclosed injury. Predators defenseman Ryan Ellis collected two assists.
Jonathan Quick made 23 saves and Jeff Carter had a goal and an assist to lead the Los Angeles Kings to a 4-1 victory over the Calgary Flames. It was Quick’s first win of the season and snapped the Kings’ three-game losing streak. Flames winger Andrew Mangiapane missed the game and is listed as day-to-day with an undisclosed injury.
Zemgus Girgensons’ third-period goal lifted the Buffalo Sabres to a 4-3 victory over the San Jose Sharks to end the latter’s three-game win streak. Sabres center Marcus Johansson had a goal and an assist while Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson had two assists.
THE SCORE: Minnesota Wild winger Jason Zucker apologized for publicly calling out head coach Bruce Boudreau earlier in the week. “There was no reason for me to use his name in that quote in any way,” Zucker said. He explained that the players were mostly responsible for the club’s poor start to the season.
CBS SPORTS: Speaking of the Wild, Joel Eriksson Ek will be sidelined one-two weeks with a lower-body injury.
Winnipeg Jets forward Mark Letestu (undisclosed) will be sidelined for the remainder of the month.
Golden Knights defeat the Coyotes in preseason play, the Bruins re-sign Charlie McAvoy, the Flames re-up Andrew Mangiapane, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: Max Pacioretty tallied a hat trick as the Vegas Golden Knights downed the Arizona Coyotes 6-2 in the first game of the 2019 NHL preseason.
NBC SPORTS BOSTON: The Bruins yesterday re-signed defenseman Charlie McAvoy to a three-year contract with an annual average value of $4.9 million.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s a reasonable bridge deal for both sides. McAvoy blossomed into a top-pairing blueliner and will be in line for a significant raise at the end of this new contract. Indeed, he’s already guaranteed a qualifying offer of $7.3 million. Cap Friendly indicates that’s how much he’ll earn in actual salary in the final year of this deal.
Speaking of the Bruins, defenseman Kevan Miller (fractured kneecap) isn’t expected to be ready for the start of their season on Oct. 3.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: If the cost of re-signing Carlo pushes the Bruins over the $81.5-million cap, they can put Miller on long-term injury reserve to get some short-term cap relief.
CALGARY SUN: The Flames re-signed winger Andrew Mangiapane to a one-year, two-way contract worth $715K.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Flames have over $6.3 million in salary-cap space with Matthew Tkachuk to re-sign. It’ll likely cost much more than that to get Tkachuk under contract, meaning a cost-cutting trade could be in the offing.
NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON: Capitals defenseman Michal Kempny seems unlikely to particpate in preseason play. He’s still recovering from surgery in April to repair a torn hamstring.
Former Av Curtis Leschyshyn has been hired by the #Avs as a pro scout
— Adrian Dater (@adater) September 15, 2019