NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 14, 2022
The Sabres down Leafs at Heritage Classic, a big night for Blue Jackets rookie Cole Sillinger, the Avs regain first place in the overall standings, the Wild honored former captain Mikko Koivu, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: The Buffalo Sabres upset the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-2 at the 2022 Tim Hortons NHL Heritage Classic before over 26,000 fans at Tim Hortons Field in Hamilton. Peyton Krebs and Vinnie Hinostroza each scored twice and Craig Anderson made 29 saves for the win. Auston Matthews scored his league-leading 45th goal of the season for the Leafs (79 points), who sit three points behind the second-place Tampa Bay Lightning in the Atlantic Division.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Matthews will face a hearing for cross-checking Sabres defenseman Rasmus Dahlin during the final five minutes of the third period.
Speaking of the Lightning, they snapped a three-game losing skid by holding off the Vancouver Canucks 2-1. Andrei Vasilevskiy made 35 saves while Victor Hedman and Ross Colton scored for the Lightning. J.T. Miller replied for Vancouver (65 points), who remain three points behind the Vegas Golden Knights for the final wild-card berth in the Western Conference. Canucks center Elias Pettersson missed the game as he’s day-to-day with an upper-body injury.
Roman Josi scored twice and added two assists to lead the Nashville Predators over the Minnesota Wild 6-2. Filip Forsberg scored two goals and chipped in an assist while David Rittich got the win with a 26-save performance. With the win, the Predators (72 points) opened a three-point lead over the Golden Knights for the first Western Conference wild-card spot. The Wild (72 points) sit four points back of the St. Louis Blues in third place in the Central Division.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before the game, the Wild honored former captain Mikko Koivu by making him the first player in franchise history to have his number retired. He’s their all-time leader in games played (1,028), assists (504) and points (709).
An overtime goal by Pierre-Luc Dubois lifted the Winnipeg Jets to a 4-3 win over the St. Louis Blues. Kyle Connor had a goal and two assists for the Jets as they sit four points behind the Golden Knights. Jets forward Andrew Copp left the game after taking a hard open-ice hit by Blues forward Oskar Sundqvist.
Columbus Blue Jackets rookie Cole Sillinger tallied his first NHL hat trick in a 6-4 victory over the Golden Knights. Oliver Bjorkstrand had a goal and three assists while Max Domi had a goal and an assist for the Jackets. The Golden Knights have dropped four straight games.
Shootout goals by Adrian Kempe and Trevor Moore gave the Los Angeles Kings a 3-2 win over the Florida Panthers. Kings goaltender Jonathan Quick stopped 30 shots in regulation and overtime in his 700th career NHL game. With 74 points, the Kings hold a six-point lead over the Edmonton Oilers for second place in the Pacific Division. The Panthers (86 points) are one back of the Eastern Conference-leading Carolina Hurricanes.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Kings played without Drew Doughty and Dustin Brown as both were placed on injured reserve yesterday.
The Colorado Avalanche (89 points) regained first place in the overall standings by blanking the Calgary Flames 3-0. Darcy Kuemper made 46 saves for the shutout while Nathan MacKinnon scored twice for the Avs. The Flames remain atop the Pacific Division with 79 points.
Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby extended his points streak to nine games to lead his club over the Carolina Hurricanes 4-2. Tristan Jarry kicked out 41 shots for the win while Brian Boyle had a goal and an assist for the Penguins, who opened a two-point lead over the New York Rangers for second place in the Metropolitan Division with 81 points. With 87 points, the Hurricanes sit two back of the Avalanche in the overall standings.
The New York Islanders got their third win in a row by holding off the Anaheim Ducks 4-3. Kyle Palmieri scored twice and Ilya Sorokin stopped 39 shots for the win. Anaheim remains four points back of the Golden Knights. Ducks winger Rickard Rakell missed the game with an upper-body injury.
Montreal Canadiens rookie Cole Caufield’s overtime goal lifted his club to a 4-3 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. Rem Pitlick scored with 43 seconds left in regulation to set the stage for Caufield’s winner. Nick Suzuki scored twice for Montreal, who played without Artturi Lehkonen (upper body) and lost center Ryan Poehling with an upper-body injury. Flyers captain Claude Giroux scored his 900th career point in his 999th career NHL game.