Montreal Canadiens goalie Carey Price punches New Jersey Devils winger Kyle Palmieri.
Game recaps, injury updates, Board of Governors news & more in your NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.com: Torrey Mitchell scored twice as the Montreal Canadiens downed the New Jersey Devils 5-2. Canadiens goaltender Carey Price lost his temper with New Jersey Devils winger Kyle Palmieri for crashing into him, throwing several punches with his blocker at Palmieri.
The Habs also got defenseman Nathan Beaulieu back from injury, but announced blueliner Greg Pateryn will miss eight weeks with a broken ankle. Canadiens captain Max Pacioretty also revealed he played most of November with a broken foot, but it’s fully healed now.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Price was fortunate he wasn’t tossed from the game for his uncharacteristic loss of temper. The Habs injury woes continue, as Pateryn joins Alex Galchenyuk and David Desharnais (knee injuries) on the sidelines. A broken foot explains Pacioretty’s offensive struggles last month.
Claude Giroux scored twice and added an assist while Michael Raffl scored the winner late in the third period to lift the Philadelphia Flyers to a 6-5 victory over the Edmonton Oilers, giving their Flyers their seventh straight win.
Following the game, Oilers captain Connor McDavid claims Flyers defenseman Brandon Manning told him he deliberately tripped him in a game last season that resulted in McDavid being sidelined for nearly half the season with a broken clavicle. Manning denied this, maintaining that it was an accident.
Sidney Crosby scored his league-leading 18th goal and collected an assist to lead the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 5-1 victory over the Florida Panthers.
Jamie Benn scored his 200th career NHL goal and added two assists as the Dallas Stars beat the Nashville Predators 5-2.
Jayson Megna and Jack Skille each scored twice while Ryan Miller made 38 saves to give the Vancouver Canucks a 5-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning.
David Pastrnak’s two goals weren’t enough to prevent the Boston Bruins from falling 4-2 to the Colorado Avalanche. The Avs hoped to have captain Gabriel Landeskog (lower-body injury) back in action but he was sidelined by illness.
Dougie Hamilton’s overtime goal lifted the Calgary Flames to their fifth straight win by edging the Arizona Coyotes 2-1.
Anders Lee scored twice as the New York Islanders nipped the St. Louis Blues 3-2.
Kevin Hayes’ late power-play goal gave the New York Rangers a 2-1 win over the Winnipeg Jets.
Derek Ryan scores twice as the Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Los Angeles Kings 3-1.
OTTAWA SUN: Erik Karlsson set a franchise record for points by a defenseman (411) during the Senators’ 4-2 win on Wednesday over the San Jose Sharks.
CHICAGO TRIBUNE: Blackhawks defenseman Brent Seabrook (head injury) will miss Friday’s game against the New York Rangers.
THE WASHINGTON POST: Capitals defenseman Matt Niskanen (upper-body injury) will miss tonight’s game against the Buffalo Sabres.
THE MERCURY NEWS: San Jose Sharks blueliner David Schlemko remains day-to-day with a lower-body injury.
USA TODAY: NHL commissioner Gary Bettman said there was “strong negative sentiment” among the league board of governors toward participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics. No vote was taken on the matter, but it appears likely the league won’t be sending players to the Pyeongchang Games in South Korea. The International Olympic Committee’s unwillingness to pick up the transportation and insurance costs of the players plus the risk of injuries are among the reasons behind the BoG disenchantment.
YAHOO SPORTS: Bettman also revealed the NHL salary cap for 2017-18 could rise by $2 million over the current cap of $73 million, but was vague in his overall comments on the matter.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: That’s merely a projection by Bettman. As we’ve seen in recent years, those predicted numbers usually don’t match the actual amount. It could go up by $2 million but I wouldn’t be surprised if it only goes up by half that amount.
THE ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: The Anaheim Ducks placed forward Ryan Garbutt on waivers.
DETROIT FREE PRESS: “Jamie Daniels, son of Detroit Red Wings television play-by-play broadcaster Ken Daniels, died in his sleep Wednesday morning, the team announced today. He was 23.”
SPECTOR’S NOTE: My condolences to the Daniels family.