NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 25, 2024

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 25, 2024

The Kings tie their series with the Oilers, the Bruins regain the lead over the Leafs, and the Golden Knights widen their lead over the Stars. Get the details plus the latest news from around the league in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar scored his first playoff overtime goal since 2012 in a 5-4 victory over the Edmonton Oilers, tying their opening-round best-of-seven series at a game apiece. Kopitar also collected two assists and Adrian Kempe tallied twice for the Kings. Oilers forward Dylan Holloway scored his first two NHL playoff goals. The series moves to Los Angeles for the next two games with Game 3 slated for Friday, Apr. 26 at 10:30 pm EDT.

Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Kings recovered well from their 7-4 blowout loss in Game 1, reminding everyone that this series could be another slog like the last two between these clubs. The 36-year-old Kopitar set franchise records with his third playoff overtime goal and was the club’s oldest player to score an overtime postseason goal.

Boston Bruins captain Brad Marchand scored the winning and insurance goals to lead his club over the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2, taking a 2-1 lead in their first-round series. Trent Frederic and Jake DeBrusk also scored and Jeremy Swayman stopped 28 shots for the Bruins. Matthew Knies and Tyler Bertuzzi replied for the Leafs. Game 4 is in Toronto on Saturday, Apr. 27 at 8 pm EDT.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Following the game, Leafs head coach Sheldon Keefe claimed Marchand was getting favorable calls from the referees. This is the same Brad Marchand who is the most suspended player in NHL history, whose reputation rarely sees him get the benefit of the doubt from on-ice officials.

Keefe is justified to be upset over Marchand getting away with a blatant trip on Tyler Bertuzzi leading to Frederic’s game-tying goal. The officiating was lousy in this game. However, the Leafs have themselves to blame for this loss. They failed to score with five power-play opportunities while the Bruins went two for three with the man advantage. Toronto goaltender Ilya Samsonov was shaky in this game after a solid effort in Game 2.

The Vegas Golden Knights expanded their series lead to 2-0 over the Dallas Stars with a 3-1 victory in Game 2 of their first-round series. Jonathan Marchessault, Noah Hanifin and Jack Eichel were the goal scorers and Logan Thompson stopped 20 shots for the Golden Knights. Jason Robertson scored for the Stars. The series moves to Las Vegas for the next two games with Game 3 on Saturday at 10:30 pm EDT.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The good news for the Stars was they scored the opening goal, something that’s been an issue for them throughout this season. The bad news is the Golden Knights rallied back while neutralizing the Stars’ offense.

Stars forwards Mason Marchment and Radek Faksa left the game with injuries in the third period. Golden Knights defenseman Nic Hague missed this game with a lower-body injury and is listed as day-to-day.


THE NEWS & OBSERVER: Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Brett Pesce is expected to miss the remainder of his club’s first-round series with the New York Islanders. He suffered a non-contact lower-body injury in Game 2 on Monday. The Hurricanes hold a 2-0 lead in their best-of-seven first-round series.

NEW YORK POST: Speaking of the Islanders, Ilya Sorokin will replace Semyon Varlamov in goal for Game 3 on Thursday.

FLORIDA HOCKEY NOW: Panthers center Sam Bennett (hand injury) will miss Games 3 and 4 of his club’s series with the Tampa Bay Lightning. He’s expected to be sidelined for a week.


SAN JOSE HOCKEY NOW: The Sharks fired head coach David Quinn on Wednesday. He had a record of 41-98-25 in two seasons with the rebuilding Sharks after 96-87-25 with the New York Rangers from 2018 to 2021.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sharks went 19-54-9 this season but that’s not on Quinn. The roster was gutted during the offseason and further depleted by injuries to core players Logan Couture and Tomas Hertl, with the latter traded to the Golden Knights at the trade deadline.

Curtis Pashelka of The Mercury News included former NHL bench bosses Craig Berube, Dean Evason, Gerard Gallant and Jay Woodcroft among his possible candidates to replace Quinn.

NHL.COM: Anaheim Ducks general manager Pat Verbeek indicated his club could name a new captain for next season. The position has been vacant since Ryan Getzlaf’s retirement in 2022.

THE SALT LAKE CITY TRIBUNE: A capacity crowd at the Delta Center welcomed former Arizona Coyotes players, coaches and management as they were welcomed to Salt Lake City for the first time. The Coyotes are moving to Utah and will play in the Delta Center starting next season.

OTTAWA SUN: The Senators still hope to make a deal with Ottawa’s National Capital Commission to build a new downtown arena at LeBreton Flats. However, hurdles remain for both sides to get a deal done.

Negotiations are ongoing between the two sides. The Senators are concerned about room for public parking on the site. They also hope to have space for an arena district with bars and restaurants.

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Al Shaver, the play-by-play voice of the Minnesota North Stars from the club’s inception in 1967-68 until their relocation to Dallas in 1993, died on Monday at age 96.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: My condolences to Shaver’s family, friends, colleagues, and North Stars fans who enjoyed his coverage of their team.

Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – November 12, 2023

Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup – November 12, 2023

Check out the latest Nikita Zadorov trade rumors plus some recent Oilers speculation in the Sunday NHL Rumor Roundup.


CALGARY SUN: Wes Gilbertson reports Nikita Zadorov addressed the reports that he had requested a trade from the Flames through his agent Dan Milstein. “We have been discussing it,” said the 28-year-old defenseman. “I cannot really say a lot of stuff.”

Zadorov reiterated his love of playing for the Flames and the city of Calgary. “But the business side, sometimes stuff happens, you know? My agent has to protect me at some points, for sure”.

Gilbertson cited Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman expressing his belief that Flames management has made it clear to Zadorov that they would be willing to move him. However, it will be on their timetable.

That means Zadorov could be on their roster for a while, perhaps until the March 8 trade deadline. Gilbertson expects Flames general manager Craig Conroy should receive plenty of calls about the big blueliner, pointing out that he’s already been linked to “Toronto, Vancouver and New Jersey”.

Calgary Flames defenseman Nikita Zadorov (NHL Images).

Zadorov currently skates on the Flames’ third defense pairing. He believes he deserves a bigger role but said the coaches are controlling how much ice time he gets. He also acknowledged that some of his teammates might be miffed by his trade request but he hopes they’ll understand one day.

SPORTSNET: Luke Fox reported the Canucks and Maple Leafs are willing to trade for Zadorov and the rearguard (who lacks a no-trade clause) is open to joining either club. The market for him could be competitive, providing an opportunity for the Flames to land a decent return.

Fox wondered if the Leafs would be willing to part with young forward Nick Robertson or their 2024 first-round pick even though they lack a second-rounder. Perhaps the Flames would take on John Klingberg’s contract with enough of a sweetener.

Meanwhile, the cap-strapped Canucks also hold a first-rounder but lack a second in next year’s draft. Fox wondered if they might be able to offload winger Conor Garland.

THE PROVINCE: Patrick Johnston also cited Friedman noting that the Canucks are among the clubs with an interest in Zadorov. A source told Johnston that they were looking into trading for him this summer before signing free agent Carson Soucy.

Johnston wondered who Zadorov might replace if the Canucks acquired him. He’s not going in for Quinn Hughes, Ian Cole or Soucy on the left side, though Cole and Soucy have skated on the right side.

Mark Friedman has been a quiet surprise for the Canucks since they picked him up from the Pittsburgh Penguins last month. Perhaps he might replace Tyler Myers, who the Canucks have explored trading over the past couple of years.

TORONTO SUN: Lance Hornby noted there remains a cordial relationship between Maple Leafs GM Brad Treliving and his former club in Calgary. However, acquiring Zadorov could prove easier said than done.

The Leafs lack any attractive roster players that they can spare. They might also be hesitant to risk their young prospects plus they’ve already traded away five of their first 12 draft picks over the next three drafts with no second-rounders in any of them. The Leafs also haven’t accrued enough cap space yet to take on Zadorov’s $3.75 million cap hit.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Friedman also noted that Noah Hanifin and Chris Tanev have also drawn attention. Like Zadorov, the Flames defensemen are eligible to become unrestricted free agents in July.

Friedman said Toronto and Vancouver are believed to be among the teams with an interest in Tanev and Zadorov “if not both.” Meanwhile, the Arizona Coyotes “took a long look” at Hanifin this week. He thinks Zadorov’s availability has brought other teams into the mix but there’s nothing imminent.

As always, salary cap space and depth in tradeable assets are the determining factors here. Friedman was asked if the Ottawa Senators would be interested in Zadorov but he noted they lack the cap room to do so.

The Devils could have the advantage in terms of prospects and promising young players to draw on for trade bait if they wish. They still need to accrue some cap space to take on Zadorov but could still be better-positioned than the Canucks and Leafs, especially if the Flames were willing to retain some salary in the deal or take back a contract in return.


SPORTSNET: Elliotte Friedman believes the Edmonton Oilers remain in shock over how quickly things have fallen apart so far. He indicated that it’s not just the goaltending but also their poor defensive play and lack of offense.

They spent much of this week calling around the league trying to see what’s out there in the trade market. They made it very clear that they were not going to make a desperate deal but couldn’t find a reasonable deal as teams were willing to wait them out.

Friedman doesn’t believe the Oilers have given up on this season. However, something will have to change soon because they can’t keep going as they have.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It could end up being a coaching change if no reasonable season-saving trades can be found. Head coach Jay Woodcroft is probably breathing a little easier today following his club’s 4-1 win over the Seattle Kraken on Saturday. However, he could start feeling the heat again if the Oilers don’t soon string some wins together.

**UPDATE** The Oilers fired Woodcroft on Sunday, replacing him with former Hartford Wolfpack bench boss Kris Knoblauch. 

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Caleb Kerney noted there’s been a lot of talk linking the Oilers to Nashville Predators goaltender Juuse Saros. However, he feels they would be better off attempting to acquire Ilya Sorokin from the New York Islanders.

With Sorokin having a down year so far, Kerney believes this would be the best time to propose a trade to Islanders GM Lou Lamoriello.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Predators general manager Barry Trotz said earlier this season that Saros isn’t going anywhere, adding that he’s looking into getting the ball rolling on contract extension talks next summer.

Sorokin may be having a “down year” by his standards through the early weeks of this season but Lamoriello isn’t trading his starting netminder. He signed Sorokin to an eight-year contract extension this summer.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 2, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 2, 2023

Islanders re-sign Ilya Sorokin to a long-term extension, Rangers sign Jonathan Quick, Panthers trade Anthony Duclair to the Sharks, and much more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: You can see my listing of notable NHL signings and trades during the opening hours of free agency on July 1 by following this link. The following is a compilation of those that occurred later in the day or in the evening.

NEW YORK POST: The Islanders signed goaltender Ilya Sorokin to an eight-year contract with an average annual value of $8.25 million.

New York Islanders goaltender Ilya Sorokin (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A smart move by the Isles to get their starting goalie under a long-term extension. In just three NHL seasons, the 27-year-old Sorokin has established himself among the league’s top netminders. It’s also a reasonable AAV that could become a bargain over the long term if he maintains his caliber of play over that period, especially as the salary cap rises in the coming years.

Speaking of goaltenders, the New York Rangers signed Jonathan Quick to a one-year, $825K contract with a maximum of $100K in performance bonuses.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Quick is no longer the elite goalie of a decade ago when he was backstopping the Los Angeles Kings to two Stanley Cups in three years. Nevertheless, the 37-year-old could be a reliable 20-25 game backup for starter Igor Shesterkin, who could also benefit from Quick’s experience.

TSN: The Florida Panthers traded winger Anthony Duclair to the San Jose Sharks in exchange for forward Steven Lorentz and a fifth-round pick in 2025.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This was a salary dump by the Panthers to free up salary cap space. There’s speculation they could be making an addition via the free-agent market. We’ll find out if that’s the case soon enough.

The 27-year-old Duclair has reached or exceeded 20 goals and 40 points three times in his nine NHL seasons but was limited to just nine points in 20 games in 2022-23 by a torn Achilles tendon. He carries an AAV of $3 million for 2023-24 and will be a UFA next summer.

Duclair should provide a boost to the Sharks offense but might not fit into the rebuilding club’s long-term plans. Don’t be surprised if they shop him near the 2024 trade deadline.

The Toronto Maple Leafs signed defenseman John Klingberg to a one-year, $4.15 million deal.

DETROIT HOCKEY NOW: The Red Wings inked defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere to a one-year, $4.125 million contract.

DAILY FACEOFF: The Philadelphia Flyers signed forward Garnet Hathaway to a two-year, $4.75 million contract.

NEW JERSEY HOCKEY NOW: The Devils acquired defenseman Colin Miller from the Dallas Stars in exchange for a 2025 fifth-round pick.

COLORADO HOCKEY NOW: The Avalanche inked defenseman Bo Byram to a two-year contract with an AAV of $3.85 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This is a bridge deal for Byram, who was completing his entry-level contract and lacked arbitration rights. The talented 22-year-old blueliner has been limited by injuries to 72 games over the past two seasons.

TSN: The Arizona Coyotes signed forward Alex Kerfoot to a two-year, $7 million contract.

SPORTSNET: The Detroit Red Wings signed goaltender Alex Lyon to a two-year, $1.8 million deal.

DAILY FACEOFF: Tyler Bertuzzi and  Vladimir Tarasenko are among the notable players still available in this summer’s unrestricted free-agent market.

Others include Max Domi, Patrick Kane, Matt Dumba and Jonathan Toews.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Don’t expect Kane or Toews to be signing new contracts right away. Kane is recovering from hip resurfacing that could sideline him for at least four months while Toews is mulling whether to return to action or retire.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: Adam Fantilli won’t be returning to the University of Michigan, signing a three-year entry-level contract with the Columbus Blue Jackets. The 18-year-old center was chosen third overall by the Blue Jackets in the 2023 NHL Draft.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens general manager Kent Hughes is asking the club’s fans to be patient with David Reinbacher before judging his performance. Some Canadiens fans were upset over the Habs’ selection of the 18-year-old Austrian defenseman with the fifth-overall pick in the 2023 NHL Draft, so much so that several of them sent hateful messages to Reinbacher on social media.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s one thing to disagree with a team’s first-round selection during the draft. It’s another to attack the player on his social media account. People who do this are cowards who get off on saying things to people through social media that they wouldn’t dare say to their faces. You’re not the type of fan your favorite team wants or needs.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 6, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 6, 2022

The Senators buy out Colin White, the Penguins sign Casey DeSmith, the Avalanche retain Andrew Cogliano, concern over former CSKA Moscow being allowed to return to the NHL, and more in today’s morning coffee headlines.

OTTAWA SUN: The Senators are the first team to buy out a player during this NHL offseason’s first buyout period (July 1-12). On Tuesday, they placed forward Colin White on unconditional waivers for the purpose of buying out his contract. He had three years remaining on his deal at an annual average value of $4.75 million.


SPECTOR’S NOTE: A first-round pick (21st overall) of the Senators in 2015, White struggled through injuries and inconsistency following his promising 41-point performance in 2018-19. The 25-year-old center becomes an unrestricted free agent on July 13.

Ottawa Senators to buy out Colin White (NHL Images).

Speculation suggests the Montreal Canadiens could target White for an affordable one-year contract. His former agent is Canadiens general manager Kent Hughes, who reportedly attempted to acquire White before the March trade deadline.

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: The Penguins signed goaltender Casey DeSmith to a two-year contract with an annual salary cap hit of $1.8 million. DeSmith, 30, was slated to become a UFA on July 13.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: So much for speculation of Marc-Andre Fleury returning to Pittsburgh for a last hurrah with the Penguins. The tandem of DeSmith and starter Tristan Jarry will be back next season. At least they’re affordable. The Penguins’ combined cap hit for their 2022-23 goaltending is $5.3 million.

What say you, Penguins fans? Are you like or dislike the DeSmith signing? Please let us know in the comments section below.

THE DENVER POST: Andrew Cogliano is returning to the Colorado Avalanche on a one-year, $1.25 million contract. The 35-year-old was due to become a UFA next week but said returning with the Stanley Cup champions was “a very easy decision on my end.” Next season will be his 16th NHL campaign.

NYI HOCKEY NOW: Stefen Rosner reports there is concern over former CSKA Moscow players being allowed to return to their NHL teams next season after Philadelphia Flyers goaltender Ivan Fedotov was accused of dodging the Russian military draft. He was detained and sent to a naval base near the Arctic Circle. Under Russian law, every male citizen between ages 18 to 27 must serve one year in the military.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Those players include New York Islanders goaltender Ilya Sorokin, who turns 27 in August. Rosner points out Sorokin’s departure from CSKA Moscow was different from Fedotov’s as the latter terminated his KHL contract to sign with the Flyers. Nevertheless, this situation could generate uncertainty over the status of those players throughout this offseason.

THE COLUMBUS DISPATCH: Blue Jackets general manager Jarmo Kekalainen denied a report from Sportsnet’s Nick Kypreos claiming former Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Ryan McDonagh was given the choice of going to the Blue Jackets or Nashville Predators.

Kypreos said McDonagh could either accept a trade to the Predators or be claimed off waivers by the Blue Jackets. Kekalainen said the report was “100 percent inaccurate”. The blueliner was shipped to Nashville on July 3.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s also speculation linking the Blue Jackets to Arizona Coyotes defenseman Jakob Chychrun. I’ll have my take on that in today’s Rumor Mill update.

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs promoted Hayley Wickenheiser to one of three assistant general managers along with Ryan Hardy and Darryl Metcalf. They also hired Curtis Sanford as their new goaltending coach and added Matt Moulson to their pro scouting staff.

TSN: Former Leafs goalie coach Steve Briere wasn’t unemployed for long. He’s now the Seattle Kraken’s new goaltending coach.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The NHL is king when it comes to recycling…coaches, that is.

NEW YORK POST: The Islanders have added Doug Houda and Brian Wiseman as assistant coaches.

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Long-time Penguins equipment manager Dana Heinze is retiring.

THE ATHLETIC: The Coachella Valley Firebirds have hired Jessica Campbell as an assistant coach, making her the first woman to serve as a full-time coach in AHL history. The Firebirds are the minor-league affiliate of the Seattle Kraken.

DAILY FACEOFF: Former NHL executive Chris Gear provides insight into the NHL draft floor experience.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 16, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 16, 2022

Remembering the late Mike Bossy, Carey Price returns to action with the Canadiens, an independent report clears NHLPA of wrongdoing in Kyle Beach investigation, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.


NHL.com: Hall-of-Fame scorer Mike Bossy passed away yesterday at age 65 of lung cancer. He spent his entire 10-season NHL career with the New York Islanders, helping them win four straight Stanley Cups from 1980 to 1983. Bossy also won the Conn Smythe Trophy in 1982 and was a three-time winner of the Lady Byng Memorial Trophy.

New York Islanders hall-of-famer Mike Bossy (NHL.com).

Retiring in 1987, Bossy scored 573 goals and 553 assists for 1,126 points in 752 games, along with 85 goals and 160 points in 129 playoff games. He became the second player in NHL history to score 50 goals in the first 50 games of a season. Bossy is tied with Wayne Gretzky as the only players to score 50 goals nine times but is the only one to do it in nine consecutive seasons.

Gretzky, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman, Islanders general manager Lou Lamoriello, Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin (who has eight 50-goal seasons) and former teammates Denis Potvin, Glenn “Chico” Resch and Bryan Trottier were among those in the NHL community paying tribute to Bossy as a player and a person.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bossy was the purest goal scorer I ever saw. Others may have tallied more career goals but only because a back injury cut short his career. His streak of nine consecutive 50-goal seasons are testament to his greatness.

Along with Potvin, Trottier, Billy Smith, Butch Goring and the late Clark Gillies, Bossy was instrumental in turning the Islanders into the last true Stanley Cup dynasty. My sincere condolences to his family, friends, former teammates, the Islanders organization and his broadcasting colleagues at TVA Sports.


NHL.COM: Carey Price returned to action for the first time since the 2021 Stanley Cup Final but he couldn’t prevent his Montreal Canadiens from being blanked 3-0 by the New York Islanders. Price stopped 17 of 19 shots but Isles goaltender Ilya Sorokin stole the show with a 44-save performance. Zach Parise and Noah Dobson beat Price with Brock Nelson getting an empty-net goal.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before the game, the Canadiens honored Mike Bossy with a video tribute and a moment of silence.

Price didn’t look too bad considering he’d been sidelined for nearly the entire season. He couldn’t be faulted for Parise’s 3-on-0 goal or Dobson’s screened wrister that beat him on the stick side. His teammates dominated much of the play through the first two periods. However, Sorokin was on top of his game in this contest, picking up his seventh shutout to tie a franchise single-season record.

The Florida Panthers picked up their ninth straight win by thumping the Winnipeg Jets 6-1. Jonathan Huberdeau extended his points streak to 13 games with two goals and an assist. Claude Giroux collected three assists and Gustav Forsling scored twice as the Panthers (112 points) moved within two points of the first-overall Colorado Avalanche. Jets captain Blake Wheeler returned to the lineup after missing three games with an upper-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Huberdeau now has 108 points and sits two behind the Edmonton Oilers’ Connor McDavid in this season’s scoring race.

This loss could be the dagger in the heart of the Jets’ playoff hopes. They have 81 points with seven games remaining in their schedule, sitting eight points behind the Dallas Stars for the final Western Conference wild-card berth with the Stars holding a game in hand.


TSN: An independent report into the NHLPA’s handling of the Kyle Beach investigation did not find any “individual wrongdoing or institutional failures of policy or procedure”. The Toronto law firm Cozen O’Connor was hired to investigate PA executive director Donald Fehr’s response to concerns raised by two player agents about former Chicago Blackhawks winger Kyle Beach’s allegations he was sexually assaulted by the club’s former video coach Brad Aldrich.

Fehr denied any recollection he’s received a call from one of those agents. However, he didn’t deny the call may have happened.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman was critical of the report’s findings. He pointed out Dr. Brian Shaw, a program administrator for the NHL/NHLPA Player Assistance Program, found Beach’s account to be a credible report of sexual assault. “After reading this passage, I don’t understand how anyone can claim there wasn’t any ‘systemic failure’ here,” writes Friedman.

THE DENVER POST: The Colorado Avalanche can clinch first place in the Western Conference with a win tonight over the Carolina Hurricanes.

CALGARY SUN: The Flames get another chance to secure a playoff berth when they face the Arizona Coyotes. They sit atop the Pacific Division with 99 points.

THE PROVINCE: Vancouver Canucks captain Bo Horvat has been sidelined for the remainder of the regular season after taking a shot off his left leg on Thursday against the Coyotes. He’ll be re-evaluated in two weeks when the schedule has ended.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Sitting five points out of a wild-card berth, the Canucks already face an uphill climb to reach the playoffs. Losing Horvat makes that pursuit more difficult.

BOSTON HOCKEY NOW: Bruins goaltender Linus Ullmark (upper-body injury) will be sidelined for today’s game against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Brandon Carlo could be in the lineup after the defenseman returned to practice on Friday after missing Thursday’s game.

POST-GAZETTE.COM: Penguins starting goaltender Tristan Jarry is being evaluated for a lower-body injury and didn’t travel with his teammates to Boston.

TORONTO SUN: Maple Leafs defenseman Jake Muzzin will miss this weekend’s games against the Ottawa Senators and New York Islanders due to an undisclosed injury.

CBS SPORTS: Chicago Blackhawks center Kirby Dach suffered a sprained right shoulder on Thursday. There’s no timetable yet for his return.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: The Lightning signed goaltender Brian Elliott to a one-year contract extension worth $900K.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 28, 2022

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 28, 2022

The Penguins score 11 goals to crush the Red Wings, Roman Josi reached a scoring milestone, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines


NHL.COM: Evgeni Malkin returned from illness to tally a hat trick in a four-point performance as the Pittsburgh Penguins crushed the Detroit Red Wings 11-2. Sidney Crosby, Kris Letang, Bryan Rust, Rickard Rakell and Teddy Blueger each had three points in this contest as the Penguins became the first team in the salary-cap era to score 11 goals in a game. Red Wings goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic was pulled during the second period but returned in the third after Calvin Pickard was injured in a collision with Rust. The Penguins sit in second place in the Metropolitan Division with 90 points.

Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This lopsided loss caps a two-month slide for the Wings, undoing what had been promising improvement by the rebuilding club during the first half of the season. It’s generating speculation suggesting head coach Jeff Blashill could be replaced in the offseason.

Nashville Predators captain Roman Josi collected two assists to reach the 80-point plateau for the first time in a 5-4 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. Yakov Trenin scored twice and Tanner Jeannot had a goal and two assists for the Predators, who move into third place in the Central Division with 80 points. James van Riemsdyk had a goal and an assist for the Flyers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Josi has become a solid contender for the Norris Trophy with his play over the second half of this season. He leads all NHL scorers with 81 points and became just the fifth defenseman in NHL history to reach 80 points in fewer than 65 games. The last blueliner to achieve that feat was Al MacInnis in 1990-91.

An overtime goal by Kevin Fiala lifted the Minnesota Wild over the Colorado Avalanche 3-2. Cam Talbot made 40 saves for the win and Mats Zuccarello collected three assists as the Wild have won six straight to sit in second place with 84 points in the Central Division. Nazem Kadri had a goal and an assist for the Avalanche, who remain atop the overall standings with 98 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kirill Kaprizov (81 points) also scored for the Wild to become the second player in franchise history to reach 80 points. He’s just two behind Marian Gaborik’s franchise record of 83.

John Tavares scored twice and Auston Matthews netted his 48th goal of the season as the Toronto Maple Leafs rolled to a 5-2 victory over the Florida Panthers. Mitch Marner and Morgan Rielly each collected three points and Petr Mrazek made 34 saves as the Leafs (87 points) sit one point behind the second-place Tampa Bay Lightning in the Atlantic Division. The Panthers, meanwhile, hold a one-point lead over the Carolina Hurricanes for first overall in the Eastern Conference with 94 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A solid bounce-back win by the Leafs following Saturday’s disappointing 4-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens.

Speaking of the Lightning, they dropped the New York Islanders 4-1. Steven Stamkos picked up an assist to collect his 70th point of the season while Mikhail Sergachev had a goal and an assist. Islanders goalie Ilya Sorokin left the game in the third period with an upper-body injury.

New York Rangers defenseman K’Andre Miller scored in overtime in a 5-4 win over the Buffalo Sabres. Frank Vatrano scored two goals for the Rangers, who remain one point behind the second-place Penguins in the Metropolitan Division. It was a costly win for the Rangers as center Ryan Strome left the game with a lower-body injury in the first period. Sabres defenseman Colin Miller missed the game as he was placed in COVID protocol.

The Winnipeg Jets squeaked past the Arizona Coyotes 2-1 on an overtime goal by Mark Scheifele, who also opened the scoring. With 74 points, the Jets are two points behind the Vegas Golden Knights for the final Western Conference wild-card spot.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Coyotes winger Phil Kessel extended his NHL Ironman streak to 965 games, sitting second to the Flyers’ Keith Yandle and his 988 games.

New Jersey Devils center Jack Hughes scored twice as his club blew a 2-0 lead before downing the Montreal Canadiens on a shootout goal by Yegor Sherangovich. Rem Pitlick scored for the Canadiens with 46 seconds remaining in regulation.