NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 12, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 12, 2019

Sportsnet parts ways with Don Cherry, Jesse Puljujarvi to remain in Finland this season, the Coyotes extend GM John Chayka’s contract, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: The Arizona Coyotes blew a three-goal lead but went on to edge the Washington Capitals 4-3 on shootout goals by Nick Schmaltz and Conor Garland. Evgeny Kuznetsov scored twice for the Capitals. Earlier in the day, the Coyotes announced general manager John Chayka signed a contract extension.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Only 26 when hired as GM in 2016, Chayka’s made significant changes to the Coyotes roster. He re-signed Oliver Ekman-Larsson to an eight-year extension, acquired Schmaltz, Phil Kessel, Darcy Kuemper, Derek Stepan, Antti Raanta, Jason Demers, and Niklas Hjalmarsson, and drafted Clayton Keller and Jakob Chychrun. His moves appear to be paying off. The Coyotes look like a playoff contender this season.

Sebastian Aho scored twice and Joel Edmundson enjoyed a three-point performance as the Carolina Hurricanes thumped the Ottawa Senators 8-2. Andrei Svechnikov, Brett Pesce, Ryan Dzingel, Warren Foegele, and Martin Necas each collected two points.

HEADLINES

SPORTSNET: announced yesterday Don Cherry was immediately stepping down from his role on Hockey Night in Canada. The move came after Cherry singled out new Canadian immigrants during Saturday’s Coach’s Corner segment for not wearing poppies to honor the country’s veterans and troops leading up to Remembrance Day. Cherry’s comments sparked considerable outrage in the press and social media, sparking apologies by Cherry’s co-host Ron MacLean, the network, and the NHL.

After 38 years, Don Cherry is no longer on Hockey Night in Canada (Photo via NHL.com).

In an interview with the Toronto Sun, Cherry refused to walk back his comments, insisting his remarks weren’t racial or bigoted but made out of respect for Canada’s troops. He also said he felt betrayed over the firing, adding he wasn’t going to be turned into a “tamed robot” to keep his job.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Regardless of what you think of Cherry, his departure from Hockey Night in Canada creates a void it could struggle to replace. He’d been on the show since 1981 and had his Coach’s Corner segment for over 35 years. Former NHL executive Brian Burke is rumored as a potential substitute.

Cherry’s dismissal drew considerable reaction among hockey fans and pundits. Some supported him while others are glad to see him go. He’s had a long history of making controversial statements on topics that had little or nothing to do with hockey. The latest proved to be a bridge too far, sparking an intense backlash the network and the league couldn’t ignore or gloss over with apologies.

TSN: Jesse Puljujarvi intends to spend the rest of this season playing in Finland. The 21-year-old restricted free agent opted to return to his home country to await a trade by the Oilers. The club still retains his NHL rights.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ll have more on Puljujarvi in the Rumors section.

Ottawa Senators goaltender Anders Nilsson, Toronto Maple Leafs center Auston Matthews, and Colorado Avalanche defenseman Cale Makar are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Nov.10, 2019.

SPORTSNET: Columbus Blue Jackets captain Nick Foligno received a three-game suspension by the league’s department of player safety for elbowing Colorado Avalanche forward Pierre-Edouard Bellemare on Saturday.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby will miss at least one game with an undisclosed ailment. He didn’t join the team on its five-day trip to the New York area.

NBC SPORTS BOSTON: Bruins defenseman Torey Krug is sidelined with an upper-body injury. The club called up Uhro Vaakanainen on Monday.

WASHINGTON POST: Winger Richard Panik has returned to the Capitals after missing 10 games on long-term injury reserve.

THE DETROIT NEWS: Red Wings winger Justin Abdelkader is sidelined for three weeks with a mid-body injury.

LOS ANGELES TIMES: The Kings placed Trevor Lewis on injured reserve.

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs placed goaltender Michael Hutchinson on waivers and called up netminder Kasimir Kaskisuo.

STLTODAY.COM: The St. Louis Blues signed free agent forwards Troy Brouwer and Jamie McGinn to professional tryout offers.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 1, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 1, 2019

The Canadiens and Flames rally for overtime victories plus the latest on Dustin Byfuglien, injury updates and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAMES RECAPS

NHL.COM: Max Domi’s overtime goal gave the Montreal Canadiens a 5-4 victory over the Vegas Golden Knights. The Habs overcame a 4-2 deficit on goals by Tomas Tatar and Brendan Gallagher to force the extra frame. Domi and Tatar each had a goal and an assist. Golden Knights winger Max Pacioretty collected an assist against his former club for his 500th career NHL point. Canadiens center Jesperi Kotkaniemi missed the game as he’s listed as day-to-day with a groin injury.

The Calgary Flames overcame 2-0, 4-1, and 5-4 deficits to burn the Nashville Predators 6-5 on a between-the-legs overtime goal by Matthew Tkachuk, who also tallied the game-tying goal. Tkachuk and Sean Monahan finished with three points apiece. Predators winger Auston Watson celebrated his new three-year, $4.5-million contract extension with a four-point performance. Teammate Calle Jarnkrok also tallied twice.

HEADLINES

TSN: Winnipeg Jets defenseman Dustin Byfuglien could require up to four months to recover from recent ankle surgery. His agent is in discussions with the NHL Players Association as they review his case. it could have financial complications if it’s determined he injured his ankle playing hockey.

Dustin Byfuglien’s ankle surgery raises more questions over his future with the Winnipeg Jets (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Byfuglien is on a leave of absence mulling his future and was suspended without pay for salary-cap purposes. He underwent this surgery in his home state of Minnesota without informing the team.

General manager Kevin Cheveldayoff shed little light on the situation, raising speculation of a difference of opinion between the player and the organization over the status of his injured ankle. The silence from both sides only generates more questions over the future of Byfuglien’s playing career. For the time being, it seems increasingly likely he won’t be back with the Jets this season.

WINNIPEG SUN: The Jets got more bad news as center Mark Letestu has been sidelined by a heart virus (myocarditis) for six months. Winger Patrik Laine remains sidelined with a minor lower-body injury. Center Bryan Little left practice yesterday with an undisclosed injury and could miss tonight’s game against the San Jose Sharks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Letestu is expected to make a full recovery but he’ll miss the remainder of the regular season.

THE SCORE: Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin has hired a lawyer to investigate how his name became associated with a Russian virtual reality start-up that reportedly lost millions of dollars. The report claimed Malkin invested $4 million into the company, which used his name to attract other investors. He denied investing in the company.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Speaking of the Penguins, they’ve assigned Sam Lafferty to their AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

CBS SPORTS: Washington Capitals center Evgeny Kuznetsov is listed as day-to-day with an undisclosed injury. Buffalo Sabres winger Jimmy Vesey (lower body) has been upgraded from week-to-week to day-to-day. San Jose Sharks center Dylan Gambrell is day-to-day with an upper-body injury.

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Kings forward Tyler Toffoli was a healthy scratch during Wednesday’s 5-3 loss to the Vancouver Canucks.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Toffoli is an unrestricted free agent in July. It’ll be interesting to see how he responds to this move.

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Blackhawks have recalled defenseman Adam Boqvist.

The Charlotte Checkers have released Jamie McGinn from his professional tryout offer.

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 23, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 23, 2019

Capitals defenseman John Carlson reaches 20 points, Sabres captain Jack Eichel has a four-point performance against the Sharks, the Canucks’ Bo Horvat tallied a hat trick against the Red Wings, and more in the NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: John Carlson became the fourth defenseman in NHL history to record 20 points in October as his Washington Capitals beat the Calgary Flames 5-3. He’s also the league points leader. Carlson scored twice while teammate Alex Ovechkin tallied a goal and an assist. 

Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson is the fourth blueliner in league history to score 20 points in the month of October (Photo via NHL Images).

The Buffalo Sabres (8-1-1) moved into first place in the league’s overall standings by edging the San Jose Sharks 4-3 in overtime. Sabres captain Jack Eichel scored twice (including the game-winner) and assisted on two others.

Vancouver Canucks captain Bo Horvat tallied his first career NHL hat trick leading his club to a 5-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. It was the Wings’ fifth straight loss. Earlier in the day, the Wings placed defenseman Jonathan Ericsson on waivers.

Boston Bruins forwards David Pastrnak and Brad Marchand each had a goal and an assist as their club doubled up the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2. Pastrnak holds the NHL goal-scoring lead with 10 goals. Earlier in the day, the Bruins placed center David Krejci (upper body) on injured reserve and revealed winger Kurtis Kuhlman will be sidelined four weeks with a hairline fracture in his right tibia. 

Vegas Golden Knight goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury picked up his 446th career victory in a 2-1 shootout win over the Chicago Blackhawks. Fleury moves into seventh place on the all-time wins list. The Blackhawks also made a minor-league trade, shipping forward Aleksi Saarela to the Florida Panthers for defenseman Ian McCoshen.

Goaltenders Devan Dubnyk and Alex Stalock combined for 25 saves as the Minnesota Wild blanked the Edmonton Oilers 3-0. Dubnyk left the game following a second-period collision with teammate Ryan Donato and Oilers defenseman Brandon Manning. An update is expected later today. Earlier in the day, the Wild activated winger Mats Zuccarello off injured reserve.

Jonathan Huberdeau and Denis Malgin each had a goal and an assist in the Florida Panthers’ 4-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins. Aleksander Barkov collected two assists for the Panthers as they extended their points streak to six games. Penguins winger Jake Guentzel collected two helpers.

Viktor Arvidsson scored twice and added an assist to lead the Nashville Predators to a 6-1 drubbing of the Anaheim Ducks. Earlier in the day, the Ducks signed defenseman Luca Sbisa to a one-year, one-way contract and placed him on waivers to send him to their AHL affiliate in San Diego.

Christian Dvorak scored in overtime as the Arizona Coyotes nipped the New York Rangers 3-2. It was the Coyotes’ fourth straight victory and the Rangers’ fifth straight defeat. Blueshirts defenseman Tony DeAngelo scored twice in a losing cause.

Anze Kopitar’s third-period goal lifted the Los Angeles Kings to a 3-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets, who’ve lost four of their last five games. Nikolaj Ehlers scored and set up another for the Jets.

IN OTHER NEWS…

THE DENVER POST: An update is expected today on the status of Mikko Rantanen. The Colorado Avalanche winger suffered a leg injury during Monday’s game against the St. Louis Blues.

The Charlotte Checkers signed forward Jamie McGinn to a professional tryout.

CBS SPORTS: Former NHL winger Magnus Paajarvi signed a two-year contract with KHL club Lokomotiv Yaroslavl.

NBC SPORTS: Seattle’s NHL expansion franchise has narrowed down proposed team names to five. They are expected to officially reveal its name in 2020.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 21, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 21, 2019

More fallout from the Milan Lucic-for-James Neal trade plus the latest contract signings in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

THE SCORE: James Neal is ready for a fresh start with the Edmonton Oilers following last season’s career-worst performance with the Calgary Flames. On Friday, the Flames traded the 31-year-old right-winger to the Oilers for left winger Milan Lucic.

Winger James Neal is looking forward to joining the Edmonton Oilers (Photo via NHL Images).

Neal acknowledged he had a “tough go” in 2018-19. He feels he plays his best hockey when he’s around other players who can move the puck. “For me, I’m a shooter and I do my best hockey when I’m getting open and finding fresh ice.”

Speaking of Lucic, he said former Flames captain Jarome Iginla helped convince him to waive his no-movement clause to accept the trade to Calgary. They’re also former teammates, having played together with the Boston Bruins in 2013-14.

Lucic said he and Iginla had a good talk before he accepted the trade. “He told me what a great hockey town Calgary is, how much the people are behind the Flames. It’s a fan base that loves seeing effort. They obviously want to win, but regardless, they love the heart-and-soul guys, the guys who give their all, who don’t compromise, which I like to think speaks to the way I play.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As I noted in the aftermath of the trade, it’ll be interesting to see which player benefits most from this change of scenery. At least this deal provided a bit of excitement as we enter the dog days of the NHL offseason.

THE NEWS & OBSERVER: The Carolina Hurricanes avoided salary arbitration with forward Brock McGinn, re-signing him to a two-year, $4.2-million contract. “McGinn, 25, will be paid $1.9 million in 2019-20 and $2.3 million in 2020-21.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The annual average value is $2.1 million. That’s around the going rate for a fourth-line NHL forward these days. Cap Friendly indicates the Hurricanes have over $2.4 million in salary-cap space.

DKPITTSBURGHSPORTS.COM: A source claims the Toronto Maple Leafs signed UFA forward Garrett Wilson. He played 50 games with the Penguins last season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Terms of this deal have yet to be disclosed. Given the Leafs’ cap crunch, it’s likely a two-way contract or a league minimum one-way deal that can be easily buried in the minors.

YARDBARKER: Former Minnesota Wild center Eric Fehr signed with Switzerland’s Geneve-Servette HC.

SPORTSNET: The St. Louis Blues re-signed goaltender Ville Husso to a one-year, two-way deal.










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 19, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 19, 2019

The latest on Artemi Panarin, Alex Ovechkin, Joe Pavelski, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

NEW YORK POST: Rangers winger Artemi Panarin expressed criticism of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The 27-year-old Russian forward voiced his distaste for the lawlessness in his country, accusing Putin of not knowing right from wrong.

“I speak sincerely and with good intentions,” Panarin said. “Our mistake is that we treat him like a superman. But he is the same as we, and in theory, serves us. I have no relation to him that he is a superman.”

New York Rangers winger Artemi Panarin voiced his criticism of Russian President Vladimir Putin (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s rare for a Russian athlete to be publicly critical of Putin. It’ll be interesting to see if any others follow Panarin’s lead. 

Speaking of the Rangers, they signed unrestricted free agent forward Phillip Di Giuseppe yesterday. Cap Friendly indicates it’s one-year, two-way contract.

NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON: Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin is headed to China next month as an NHL ambassador. The league is trying to grow its presence in that country. “Ovechkin’s trip to Beijing will include youth hockey clinics, a media tour, and business development meetings.”

THE MERCURY NEWS: Former Sharks captain Joe Pavelski has put his San Jose mansion up for sale. The asking price is over $3.5 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Dang! Just slightly out of my price range…;)

SEATTLE TIMES: Ron Francis was officially introduced yesterday as the general manager of Seattle’s NHL expansion franchise.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This is a little anticlimactic as the news of Francis’ hiring was leaked to the media the day before. See my reaction to Francis’ hiring in Wednesday’s morning coffee headlines.

BOSTON HERALD: Former Bruins forward Chris Kelly is returning to the club as player development coordinator.

NHL.COM: The Winnipeg Jets renewed their affiliation agreement with the ECHL’s Jacksonville Icemen.

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 1, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – February 1, 2019

Game recaps, injury updates, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: The Philadelphia Flyers extended their winning streak to six games with a 3-2 overtime victory over the Boston Bruins. Travis Sanheim tallied the winner and also picked up an assist. David Pastrnak scored both Bruins goals. 

Mika Zibanejad’s hat trick carried the New York Rangers to a 4-3 win over the New Jersey Devils (Photo via NHL Images).

Mike Zibanejad’s hat trick carried the New York Rangers to a 4-3 win over the New Jersey Devils. Mats Zuccarello collected three assists for the Rangers, who’ve won five of their last seven contests. Earlier in the day, the Rangers revealed center Brett Howden will be sidelined three-to-four weeks with a sprained MCL. 

Third-period goals by Jack Roslovic and Kyle Connor lifted the Winnipeg Jets to a 4-3 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets. The Jackets were playing without Cam Atkinson, who was a late scratch after being struck in the face by a puck during warmups. Earlier in the day, the Jackets revealed center Boone Jenner will miss one-to-three weeks with an infected laceration on his ankle.  Meanwhile, Jets defenseman Dustin Byfuglien (lower-body injury) is now listed as day-to-day. He’s been sidelined since Dec. 29. 

ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Anaheim Ducks winger Corey Perry could make his season debut on Saturday against the Winnipeg Jets. He’s been sidelined for four months recovering from surgery on his right knee. 

SPORTSNET: Edmonton Oilers defenseman Oscar Klefbom suffered an apparent setback in his recovery from a broken left finger after being struck on the injured hand during practice. 

STLTODAY.COM: Blues winger David Perron (upper-body injury) was placed on injured reserve. 

DALLAS MORNING NEWS: Stars forward Tyler Pitlick (upper-body injury) will be sidelined for two more weeks.

SPORTSNET: The Montreal Canadiens will neither confirm or deny a report claiming defenseman Noah Juulsen may have suffered a career-threatening eye injury. He was struck in the face by a puck during a Nov. 19 game against Washington and his last game was with their AHL farm team on Dec. 27. The club will only confirm he has an upper-body injury that requires rest and is not a concussion.  

TSN: The Florida Panthers placed forward Jamie McGinn on waivers. 

CBC.CA: Olympic gold medalist Kendall Coyne Schofield defended NBC Sports analyst Pierre McGuire from social media backlash for “mansplaining” hockey to Coyne Schofield. The incident occurred during her appearance with McGuire as a guest analyst in Wednesday’s contest between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Tampa Bay Lightning. 

“I know he respects me as a hockey player, a woman, and a friend and that’s why I didn’t think twice about our on-air exchange when it happened,” said Coyne Schofield. Nevertheless, she added, “If I were watching it at home and saw a man say this to a woman athlete, I would have been offended.”

McGuire also issued a statement apologizing for his remarks. “At times my excitement got the better of me and I should have chosen my words better.”

THE SCORE: Antoine Vermette yesterday announced his retirement after 14 NHL seasons. In 1,046 games with the Ottawa Senators, Columbus Blue Jackets, Phoenix/Arizona Coyotes, Chicago Blackhawks, and Anaheim Ducks, Vermette scored 228 goals and 287 assists for 515 points, along with 14 goals and 28 points in 97 playoff games. He won a Stanley Cup with the Blackhawks in 2015. 

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