NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 27, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 27, 2018

Game recaps, players of the week, plus updates on Ilya Kovalchuk, Roberto Luongo, Karl Alzner, and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: Mitch Marner set up three goals, Frederik Andersen made 38 saves, and Patrick Marleau collected an assist in his 1,600th career NHL game as the Toronto Maple Leafs doubled up the Boston Bruins 4-2. David Pastrnak tallied both Bruins goals.

Bruins defenseman Kevan Miller left the game in the first period after taking a puck to the throat while winger Jake DeBrusk might require medical assessment after being struck by a shot in the back of his head. Miller’s x-rays were negative but he remained in the hospital for observation. 

Toronto Maple Leafs winger Patrick Marleau played in his 1,600th career NHL game. (Photo via NHL Images)

The Washington Capitals faced their former coach Barry Trotz for the first time, defeating his New York Islanders 4-1. Tom Wilson scored twice as the Capitals extended their winning streak to six games.

Before the game, the Capitals presented Trotz and his assistants Lane Lambert and Mitch Korn with their Stanley Cup rings. Earlier in the day, the Islanders activated winger Matt Martin off injured reserve.

Artemi Panarin had three points and Pierre-Luc Dubois scored twice as the Columbus Blue Jackets beat the Detroit Red Wings 7-5. Anthony Mantha scored two goals for the Wings. 

The Florida Panthers overcame a 2-0 deficit to defeat the New Jersey Devils 4-3 in overtime. Jonathan Huberdeau (three points) scored the game-tying goal and Mike Hoffman netted the winners.

Earlier in the day, the Panthers revealed goaltender Roberto Luongo is considered day-to-day after re-injuring his right knee. Luongo injured the knee in the Panthers’ season opener and was sidelined for a month. 

Three third-period goals gave the New York Rangers a 5-2 win over the Ottawa Senators. Rangers forward Mika Zibanejad had a goal and an assist. 

Winnipeg Jets winger Patrik Laine, Vegas Golden Knights goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury, and Tampa Bay Lightning right wing Nikita Kucherov are the NHL’s three stars for the week ending Nov. 25, 2018. 

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Kings winger Ilya Kovalchuk’s playing time has declined under new head coach Willie Desjardins. In July, the Kings signed Kovalchuk to a three-year contract with a no-movement clause in its first two seasons. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: No indication the Kings are looking to move Kovalchuk but his reduced ice time has caught the attention of NHL pundits. Could be worth keeping an eye on in the coming weeks, especially if the Kings fail to make any notable improvement. 

TSN: The Montreal Canadiens placed defenseman Karl Alzner on waivers. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Alzner signed a five-year, $23.125-million contract last year with the Canadiens but he’s been a frequent healthy scratch this season as the Habs employ a faster-paced system. He’s not expected to be claimed and could be sent to their AHL affiliate in Laval.

It’s also possible the Canadiens are making this move to determine if there’s any possibility of trading him but his salary, modified no-trade clause, and his lack of speed mean they probably won’t find any takers unless they agree to pick up half of his salary. Even then, it’s doubtful they’ll find a deal. They could consider buying him out next summer, though they’ll face cap hits of $4.194 million in 2020-21 and $2.194 million in 2021-22. 

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning winger Ondrej Palat (lower-body injury) could return to the lineup tonight against the Anaheim Ducks. 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 8, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 8, 2018

Game recaps, Milan Lucic fined, and some injury updates in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: T.J. Oshie’s goal late in the third period lifted the Washington Capitals to a 2-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins, handing the latter their fifth straight loss. Penguins center Evgeni Malkin was ejected early in the third period for an illegal hit to Oshie’s head.

Washington Capitals winger T.J. Oshie tallied the winner in a 2-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Penguins general manager Jim Rutherford isn’t pleased with his club’s performance of late, giving rise to some trade chatter. I’ll have more about this later this morning in the Rumors section.

Colton Sissons hat trick powered the Nashville Predators to a 4-1 win over the Colorado Avalanche, who saw two goals overturned on video review.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: After a hot start to the season the Avalanche have cooled of late, dropping four straight games. 

Ryan Getzlaf’s third-period goal snapped a 2-2 tie as the Anaheim Ducks edged the Calgary Flames 3-2, snapping the Flames’ four-game win streak.

Edmonton Oilers winger Milan Lucic was fined $10,000.00 by the NHL department of player discipline for roughing Tampa Bay Lightning forward Mathieu Joseph during Tuesday’s game. 

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman could be returning to action soon from an upper-body injury. Winger Ondrej Palat (lower-body) is expected to be sidelined for several weeks but no surgery is required.

ARIZONA SPORTS: Coyotes goaltender Antti Raanta (lower body, day-to-day) was placed on injured reserve yesterday. 

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Vegas Golden Knights forward Erik Haula (lower-body, suspected knee injury) is ruled out for the remainder of their road trip. He’ll continue to travel with the team and be re-evaluated upon their return to Las Vegas.  

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 28, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – October 28, 2018

Game recaps, the latest list of injuries and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: The New Jersey Devils took a 3-0 lead and held on for a 3-2 win over the Florida Panthers to snap a three-game winless skid. Keith Kinkaid made 35 saves and Taylor Hall extended his points streak to seven games.

Anders Lee had a four-point performance and Brock Nelson scored twice as the New York Islanders thrashed the Philadelphia Flyers 6-1, extending the latter’s losing streak to three games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Add the Flyers’ John Hakstol to the list of NHL head coaches on the hot seat. 

Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mikko Koskinen picked up his first NHL victory in nearly eight years as his club downed the Nashville Predators 5-3. Leon Draisaitl and Drake Caggiula each scored twice for the Oilers while Predators winger Filip Forsberg tallied a hat trick in a losing cause.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: After a shaky start, the Oilers have climbed into third place in the Pacific Division. 

Shootout goals by Evgeny Kuznetsov and Nicklas Backstrom gave the Washington Capitals a 4-3 win over the Calgary Flames, who dropped their third straight game. Capitals netminder Pheonix Copley made 27 saves for his first NHL victory.

Carey Price moves into second place among the Montreal Canadiens’ all-time goalie wins leaders. (Photo via NHL.com)

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price turned in a 33-save shutout in a 3-0 blanking of the Boston Bruins. Price has passed Patrick Roy for second place in franchise history for wins with 290. The Canadiens were playing without defenseman Noah Juulsen, who was sidelined by a minor upper-body injury

Three unanswered third-period goals by Nazem Kadri, Jakes Gardiner, and Kasperi Kapanen lifted the Toronto Maple Leafs to a 3-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets. It was a costly victory for the Leafs, as Auston Matthews left the game in the second period with an apparent left shoulder injury following a clean hit from Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Leafs coach Mike Babcock said an update on Matthews’ status will be made on Monday. Considering how much pain Matthews appeared to be in he could be sidelined for a while. 

Two goals by Artemi Panarin, including the winner in overtime, enabled the Columbus Blue Jackets to squeak past the Buffalo Sabres 5-4, ending the latter’s three-game win streak. Cam Atkinson also tallied twice for the Jackets.

Alex Pietrangelo and Zach Sanford each had a goal and two assists and Vladimir Tarasenko scored twice in the St. Louis Blues 7-3 thumping of the Chicago Blackhawks. Patrick Kane scored twice and collected an assist for the Blackhawks. Blues goaltender Jake Allen left the game in the second period with an apparent concussion following a crease collision with a teammate.

Mikael Granlund extended his points streak to seven games and his Minnesota Wild won their fifth straight by defeating the Colorado Avalanche 3-2. Granlund and Eric Staal each had a goal and an assist.

Michael Grabner scored two shorthanded goals, Clayton Keller scored his fifth goal in five games and Antti Raanta made 30 saves as the Arizona Coyotes crushed the Tampa Bay Lightning 7-1. The Lightning played without defenseman Victor Hedman (undisclosed injury, out one week) and winger Ondrej Palat (foot injury, day to day).

Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin each scored twice and Casey DeSmith turned aside 29 shots as the Pittsburgh Penguins shut out the Vancouver Canucks 5-0, spoiling the return of Elias Pettersson and Brock Boeser to the Canucks’ lineup. 

LOS ANGELES TIMES: More bad news for the struggling Kings as starting goaltender Jonathan Quick suffered another lower-body injury and is listed as day-to-day. “It is believed to be a different injury than what put Quick on injured reserve earlier this month.”

CAP FRIENDLY: The Anaheim Ducks placed rookie forward Maxime Comtois (lower body) on injured reserve. 

TORONTO STAR: Former Maple Leafs forward Miroslav Frycer recalls his two organ transplants, his defection from Czechoslovakia and his hard-living lifestyle with the Leafs in the 1980s in a recently released biography. 

SPORTSNET: On Monday, the NHL is expected to announce it will be establishing some strategic partnerships with the sports gambling industry. 

 











NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 3, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – May 3, 2018

Sharks square series with Golden Knights, Lightning take series lead over Bruins, Tom Wilson suspended, Stars to announce new head coach. Details and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines

NHL.COM: Martin Jones had a 34-save shutout as the San Jose Sharks blanked the Vegas Golden Knights 4-0, tying their second-round series at two games apiece. Logan Couture and Brenden Dillon each collected two assists for the Sharks, who also successfully killed off all five of Vegas’ power-play opportunities. The series returns to Vegas for Game 5 on Friday.

Martin Jones’ 34-save shutout gave the San Jose Sharks a 4-0 win over the Vegas Golden Knights in Game 4 of their second-round playoff series (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was the Sharks best performance of the series. They did an excellent job neutralizing the Golden Knights’ power play while Jones was stellar between the pipes.

Two goals by Ondrej Palat in the opening 3:19 of the first period powered the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 4-1 victory over the Boston Bruins. The win gives the Lightning a 2-1 lead in their second-round series, which resumes Friday in Boston. Winger Yanni Gourde became the second Lightning player to become a father in the 2018 playoffs (J.T. Miller was the other), returning in time to take part in Game 3.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to Gourde and his wife. For the second straight game, the Lightning managed to contain Boston’s top line of Patrice Bergeron, Brad Marchand and David Pastrnak. If the Bruins’ secondary scorers don’t start cashing in soon this series could be over in five games. 

NBC SPORTS WASHINGTON/PITTSBURGH POST-GAZETTE: Capitals winger Tom Wilson received a three-game suspension for an illegal hit to the head of Pittsburgh Penguins forward Zach Aston-Reese during Game 3 of their second-round series. Meanwhile, the Penguins need more from forwards Phil Kessel and Derick Brassard in this series against the Capitals. 

THE TENNESSEAN/WINNIPEG SUN: The Nashville Predators need to regroup and stick with goaltender Pekka Rinne after blowing a three-goal lead to fall 7-4 to the Winnipeg Jets in Game 3 of their second-round series. Meanwhile, Jets forward Mathieu Perreault was medically cleared to return to action after being sidelined for the past seven games with a suspected shoulder injury.

DALLAS MORNING NEWS: On Friday, the Dallas Stars expected to name Denver University’s Jim Montgomery as their new head coach. He’ll become just the fifth coach in hockey history to jump directly from the NCAA ranks into the NHL. He guided his club to the 2017 NCAA championship.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Having spent parts of six seasons as an NHL player with the St. Louis Blues, Montreal Canadiens, Philadelphia Flyers, San Jose Sharks and the Stars, Montgomery knows what to expect at the big-league level. He also has a reputation for working well with young player. That should should prove invaluable to a roster with six regulars under 25 who skated in 70-plus games this season. 

NHL.COM: Daniel and Henrik Sedin of the Vancouver Canucks, P.K. Subban of the Nashville Predators and Jason Zucker of the Minnesota Wild are this year’s finalists for the King Clancy Trophy. 

The Boston Bruins and Calgary Flames will play a pair of preseason games in China this September. 

 











NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 30, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 30, 2018

Predators, Capitals even their respective series, update on Hurricanes GM search and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Kevin Fiala’s double-overtime goal gave the Nashville Predators a 5-4 victory over the Winnipeg Jets in Game 2 of their opening round series. Ryan Johansen scored twice for the Predators and teammates Filip Forsberg and Viktor Arvidsson each had three-point performances. Mark Scheifele tallied two goals and an assist for the Jets and Dustin Byfuglien had a goal and an assist. The series moves to Winnipeg for Game 3 tied at a game apiece.

Kevin Fiala was the overtime hero for the Nashville Predators in a 5-4 victory in Game 2 of their series against the Winnipeg Jets (Photo via NHL Images)

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was one of the most thrilling games I’ve seen in this year’s playoffs. It was very evenly matched, and while the Jets lost this one they put forth a better effort than in Game 1, which they stole thanks to an outstanding performance by goaltender Connor Hellebuyck. The Predators’ best players, meanwhile, made their presence felt in this one. If this game is any indication, we’re in for a very exciting series between these two talented clubs. 

Braden Holtby turned in a 32-save performance to backstop the Washington Capitals to a 4-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins to tie their second-round series at a game apiece. Alex Ovechkin opened the scoring and teammate Lars Eller collected three assists.

The Penguins thought they had narrowed the score to 3-2 in the third period but there was no conclusive evidence the puck crossed the goal line. They also lost defenseman Brian Dumoulin after he was struck in the head by the shoulder of Capitals winger Tom Wilson. No penalty was called on the play and there’s no indication he’ll face supplemental discipline. The Pens also played without center Evgeni Malkin, who remained sidelined by a lower-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A strong bounce-back effort by the Capitals following a heartbreaking opening-game defeat. The series shifts to Pittsburgh for Games 3 and 4. Don’t be surprised if Malkin returns to the Penguins lineup by then. 

THE MERCURY NEWS: San Jose Sharks’ captain Joe Pavelski has been the club’s heartbeat since taking over from the sidelined Joe Thornton as their first-line center. 

LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL: Golden Knights’ coach Gerard Gallant could keep his lineup changes for Game 2 intact for Game 3 on Monday. He moved “David Perron back with regular linemates Erik Haula and James Neal while dropping Alex Tuch down to play with Cody Eakin and Ryan Carpenter.”

BOSTON HERALD: Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy is showing improvement following a roller-coaster series against Toronto. One reason is his ongoing recovery from an MCL sprain in his left knee. 

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning forwards Brayden Point and Ondrej Palat skipped practice Sunday for “body maintenance.

NBC SPORTS PHILADELPHIA: Flyers goaltender Michal Neuvirth will undergo arthroscopic surgery on both hips. He also said he will be changing trainers for the third straight year. 

SPORTSNET: Carolina Hurricanes interim general manager Don Waddell will remain in the role for the time being. The club couldn’t reach an agreement with Buffalo Sabres assistant GM Steve Greeley and there’s no other prospective hires in the near future. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s believed one reason behind the Hurricanes’ difficulty in attracting quality candidates is new owner Tom Dundon’s salary offer is considered too low. 

 











NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 13, 2018

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 13, 2018

Playoff game recaps, Drew Doughty suspended plus updates on the Senators, Oilers and more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.

NHL.COM: Evander Kane scored two goals in his NHL playoff debut as the San Jose Sharks blanked the Anaheim Ducks 3-0 to take a 1-0 lead in their best-of-seven opening-round series. Joe Pavelski collected two assists and Martin Jones made 25 saves for the shutout. 

Evander Kane scored twice in his NHL playoff debut to lead the San Jose Sharks to a 3-0 win over the Anaheim Ducks in Game 1 of their opening-round series (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kane wasted little time making a positive impression in his first-ever postseason game. Performances like that could ensure the pending unrestricted free agent has a longer tenure in San Jose. 

Two third-period goals by Filip Forsberg lifted the Nashville Predators to a series-opening 5-2 win over the Colorado Avalanche in Game 1 of their first-round playoff series. The Predators had to overcome 1-0 and 2-1 deficits before blowing the game open in the third.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Give the underdog Avs some credit for being more competitive than I think many observers expected them to be in this game. Forsberg, however, made the difference, especially with his through-the-legs highlight-reel goal to make it 4-2. 

Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak scored and set up two others as his club thumped the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-1 in Game 1 of their  opening-round series. Leafs center Nazem Kadri will have a hearing with the NHL department of player discipline today for boarding Bruins forward Tommy Wingels in the third period. Kadri received a major penalty and was ejected.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kadri was responding to Wingels elbowing Leafs forward Mitch Marner, but it’s clear he was frustrated by that point. The Bruins took over control of the game with two goals late in the second period. Except for a few stretches in the first two periods, the Leafs were outplayed in this one.

Seth Jones’ tying goal late in the third period set the stage for Artemi Panarin’s overtime winner as the Columbus Blue Jackets overcame 2-0 and 3-2 deficits to edge the Washington Capitals 4-3, taking a 1-0 lead in their opening-round series. Panarin also added two assists. Evgeny Kuznetsov scored twice for the Capitals.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This game was a rough one. Blue Jackets winger Josh Anderson was ejected for boarding Washington’s Michal Kempny. Meanwhile, Capitals winger Tom Wilson’s hit on Columbus’ Alexander Wennberg is under review by the league. Wennberg left the game and didn’t return. 

Ondrej Palat had a goal and two assists to lead the Tampa Bay Lightning to a 5-2 victory over the New Jersey Devils in Game 1 of their first-round series. Playing in his first NHL playoff game, Devils winger Taylor Hall scored and set up Travis Zajac’s goal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Devils made this one interesting by narrowing the LIghtning lead to 3-2 in the third before Alex Killorn scored to put the game out of reach. 

LOS ANGELES TIMES: Kings defenseman Drew Doughty received a one-game suspension for an illegal hit to the head of Vegas Golden Knights forward William Carrier in Game 1 of their first-round series. Game 2 goes tonight in Las Vegas. 

SPORTSNET: Winnipeg Jets forward Mathieu Perreault is a game-day decision for Game 2 of his club’s series against the Minnesota Wild. Perreault suffered an upper-body injury in Game 1 and didn’t return. 

EDMONTON SUN: Oilers CEO Bob Nicholson yesterday gave a vote of confidence to general manager Peter Chiarelli. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There was some speculation suggesting Chiarelli might lose his job following the Oilers’ disappointing performance this season. He’ll get the opportunity to get the club back on course this summer, but the moves he makes (or doesn’t make) will determine if he has a long-term future in Edmonton. 

TSN: The future of Ottawa Senators head coach Guy Boucher remains uncertain as he and his coaching staff face an internal review by management that could last until the end of May. 

OTTAWA SUN: Speaking of the Senators, they intend to keep their first-round pick in the 2018 NHL Draft. They will instead “relinquish their first-round pick in 2019 as part of the deal that brought centre Matt Duchene to Ottawa in November.”

THE ATHLETIC: The former ownership group of the St. Louis Blues intends to sell their minority interest in the club.