NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 2, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 2, 2019

The Islanders collect their eighth straight win, John Carlson leads the stars of the month, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

GAME RECAPS

NHL.COM: The New York Islanders collected their eighth straight win by downing the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-2. Isles captain Anders Lee scored a goal and added two assists while goaltender Thomas Greiss made 33 saves. The Lightning is 1-2-1 in their last four games.

Winnipeg Jets goaltender Connor Hellebuyck made 51 saves in a 3-2 win over the San Jose Sharks (Photo via NHL Images).

Connor Hellebuyck made 51 saves and Nikolaj Ehlers scored the winning goal late in the third period as the Winnipeg Jets edged the San Jose Sharks 3-2. The Sharks have dropped four consecutive games.

A four-goal first period powered the Washington Capitals to a 6-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres. Jakub Vrana scored twice while Michal Kempny and Tom Wilson each had three points.

Sebastian Aho, Dougie Hamilton, and Jaccob Slavin had three points each to lead the Carolina Hurricanes over the Detroit Red Wings 7-3. Hurricanes’ goaltender Petr Mrazek picked up his 15th consecutive home victory. Anthony Mantha scored two goals for the Red Wings.

The St. Louis Blues overcame a 3-1 deficit to nip the Columbus Blue Jackets 4-3 in overtime. David Perron tallied the winner and also collected an assist. Pierre-Luc Dubois and Oliver Bjorkstrand each tallied a goal and an assist.

Ryan Getzlaf’s overtime goal lifted the Anaheim Ducks over the Vancouver Canucks by a score of 2-1. Canucks defenseman Quinn Hughes left the game in the first period with an ankle injury. Earlier in the day, the Canucks recalled Sven Baertschi while Micheal Ferland (concussion) was placed on injured reserve.

Roope Hintz scored two goals and Anton Khudobin kicked out 38 shots as the Dallas Stars defeated the Colorado Avalanche 2-1. Avalanche center Nathan MacKinnon scored to extend his points streak to 13 games.

Sean Couturier tallied a goal and an assist and scored the winner in a shootout as the Philadelphia Flyers edged the New Jersey Devils 4-3. Taylor Hall also had a goal and an assist for the Devils. Earlier in the day, the Devils acquired goaltender Louis Domingue from the Lightning in exchange for a conditional seventh-round pick in 2021.

HEADLINES

Washington Capitals defenseman John Carlson, Boston Bruins winger David Pastrnak, and Edmonton Oilers winger Leon Draisaitl are the NHL’s three stars for October 2019.

THE SCORE: Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin was activated off injured reserve. He’s expected to be in the lineup for today’s game against the Edmonton Oilers.

SPORTSNET: Hall-of-Famer Doug Gilmour is rejoining the Toronto Maple Leafs as a community representative.

TSN: Speaking of the Leafs, they’ve loaned forward Nic Petan to the AHL’s Toronto Marlies.

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 22, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 22, 2019

The Jets suspend Dustin Byfuglien, Martin St. Louis leaves the Blue Jackets, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

TSN: The Winnipeg Jets suspended defenseman Dustin Byfuglien for failing to report to training camp. The move was made to protect their roster and provide salary-cap flexibility. If Byfuglien doesn’t report by the opening day of the regular season next month, his salary-cap hit won’t count against their payroll for as long as he’s not on the roster.

The Winnipeg Jets suspend defenseman Dustin Byfuglien for failing to report to training camp (Photo via NHL Images).

Byfuglien is on a leave of absence and is believed to be mulling his future. Bob McKenzie reports this isn’t as ominous as it sounds as the Jets still want the blueliner back back. He said the decision can be reversed at any time and doubts this comes as a surprise to Byfuglien.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I daresay Jets general manager Kevin Cheveldayoff informed Byfuglien of this decision and the reasons behind it before it was officially announced. It’s a business decision and not intended to punish him.

THE ATHLETIC: Martin St. Louis won’t be returning to the Columbus Blue Jackets this season. The Hall-of-Famer spent half of last season with the club in an advisory role. He cited family reasons behind the decision.

STARTRIBUNE.COM: Winger Kevin Fiala finally joined the Minnesota Wild after missing the first nine days of training camp while waiting for a work visa.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: The Lightning demoted goaltenders Louis Domingue and Mike Condon to their AHL affiliate in Syracuse.

SPORTSNET: The Vegas Golden Knights placed goaltenders Garret Sparks and Oscar Dansk on waivers.

 

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 24, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – July 24, 2019

The Leafs reacquire David Clarkson’s contract, the Predators re-sign Colton Sissons to a seven-year deal, and an arbiter awards Jets forward Andrew Copp a two-year contract. Details and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs reacquired the contract of David Clarkson from the Vegas Golden Knights last night in exchange for goaltender Garret Sparks. The Leafs also received a fourth-round pick in the 2020 NHL Draft.

The Toronto Maple Leafs reacquired the contract of permanently sidelined winger David Clarkson (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Leafs general manager Kyle Dubas continues to juggle his limited salary cap space. By taking back Clarkson’s dormant contract, Dubas can allocate his $5.25-million cap hit, and that of permanently sidelined Nathan Horton ($5.3 million), toward re-signing restricted free agent Mitch Marner by placing both on long-term injury reserve.

Some suggest the cap-strapped Leafs could start the season without Marner, place Clarkson and Horton on LTIR on the opening day of the regular season, and then re-sign the winger. It’ll be interesting to see how Dubas plays this. 

As for Sparks, he’ll likely start this season with the Golden Knights’ farm club. Having lost the confidence of the Leafs coaching staff, this move gives the goaltender a chance to get his career back on track with Vegas.

LAS VEGAS SUN: Soon after trading Clarkson’s contract to Toronto, the Golden Knights signed defenseman Deryk Engelland to a one-year, bonus-laden contract. He’ll earn a base salary of $700K with performance bonuses that could take him up to $1.5 million. The move gives the Golden Knights a projected $1.025-million in cap space.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Golden Knights still have restricted free agent Nikita Gusev to re-sign, but it sounds like they’ll instead try to trade his rights. Shedding Clarkson’s cap hit makes it easier for them to make other minor salary moves if necessary without the LTIR hassle.

THE TENNESSEAN: The Nashville Predators yesterday avoided salary arbitration with Colton Sissons, re-signing the winger to a seven-year, $20-million contract. The annual average value is $2.857 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Predators GM David Poile praised Sissons work ethic, versatility, and leadership when announcing this deal. While the cap hit is reasonable, it’s an unusually long term for a role player. Some observers wonder why Sissons would agree to such a lengthy deal with that low cap hit. Perhaps it’s because he’s playing in a city where there’s no state tax. It could just be because he loves living and playing in Nashville.

TSN: An arbiter awarded Winnipeg Jets forward Andrew Copp a two-year, $4.56-million contract. The annual average value is $2.28 million.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Copp sought a one-year, $2.9-million contract while the Jets pitches a two-year deal worth $1.5 million annually. The arbiter split the difference. This will affect the Jets’ efforts to re-sign Patrik Laine and Kyle Connor. I’ll have more later today in the Rumors section.

THE DENVER POST: The Colorado Avalanche signed defenseman Anton Lindholm to a two-year, two-way contract.

TWINCITIES.COM: Former NHL forward Alex Tanguay is joining the Iowa Wild as an assistant coach.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: The Oilers added Brian Wiseman to their coaching staff. Wiseman spent several seasons as an assistant coach with the University of Michigan.










NHL Rumor Mill – June 15, 2019

NHL Rumor Mill – June 15, 2019

The latest on Jacob Trouba, Jared Spurgeon, James Reimer, and Garret Sparks plus an update on the Canucks in today’s NHL rumor mill. 

TROUBA DECISION COMING SOON?

WINNIPEG SUN: Ken Wiebe expects the status of Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba to be sorted out by next weekend’s NHL Draft in Vancouver. If Trouba’s traded, a potential return for the Jets will be affected by whether he’s open to signing a contract extension with the club that acquires him. Left winger Nikolaj Ehlers has come up in trade rumors but Wiebe believes it’ll take a significant offer to pry him away from the Jets. Depending on Trouba’s status, center Mathieu Perreault could become a cost-cutting trade candidate. 

THE ATHLETIC: Craig Custance pointed out rumors have linked Trouba, a Detroit-area native, to the Red Wings. They have plenty of salary-cap flexibility but general manager Steve Yzerman could be reluctant to part with assets for a player a year away from UFA status.

Decision day fast approaching for Winnipeg Jets defenseman Jacob Trouba (Photo via NHL Images).

Custance suggested the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers as possibilities because Trouba’s fiancee is attending medical school in Florida. He also considered the Philadelphia Flyers as a potential destination. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There’s growing speculation Trouba will be traded before the end of next weekend’s draft. I also wouldn’t rule out the Buffalo Sabres, New York Islanders, and New York Rangers as possible landing spots. I agree that where he could end up depends on whether he’ll sign a contract extension.

I have my doubts the Jets will part with Ehlers, though they might go for it if someone offered up a suitable replacement for Trouba. 

CANUCKS COULD PURSUE GARDINER OR MYERS

SPORTSNET: Mike Johnston cites player agent J.P. Barry saying he expects to speak with the Vancouver Canucks regarding clients Jake Gardiner and Tyler Myers when free agency opens on July 1. Canucks GM Jim Benning’s made no secret he’s in the market for a top-four defenseman. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It wouldn’t be at all surprising if Benning pursues Gardiner and Myers. The UFA interview period begins the day following the draft (June 23). The Canucks GM will likely be keen to speak with those two. 

WILD GM HOPES TO RE-SIGN SPURGEON

TWINCITIES.COM: Dane Mizutani reports Minnesota Wild GM Paul Fenton said he has every intention of re-signing Jared Spurgeon. The 29-year-old defenseman is a year away from becoming an unrestricted free agent.

Fenton dismissed recent speculation suggesting Spurgeon could be traded this summer. “There’s not a plan to trade Jared Spurgeon, as has been kind of rumored. This guy is a great piece, a great leader, a great person, a great family guy. We want to have him back, and we’re going to work on doing that.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Mizutani indicates this doesn’t mean a contract extension is imminent. Nevertheless, there appears a mutual willingness to work out a new deal. Spurgeon’s on a four-year, $20.75-million contract and will seek a significant raise. 

 

 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 6, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – April 6, 2019

Game recaps, Blue Jackets clinch final Eastern playoff spot, Leafs goaltending controversy, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COM: The Columbus Blue Jackets clinched the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot by edging the New York Rangers 3-2. Artemi Panarin scored the only goal in the shootout. The Jackets’ victory also officially eliminated the Montreal Canadiens from the playoff race. 

Columbus Blue Jackets winger Artemi Panarin’s shootout goal clinched a playoff spot for his club in a 3-2 win over the New York Rangers (Photo via NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: I’ll have more on what the offseason might hold for the Canadiens later today in the Rumors section. 

Speaking of the Rangers, the New York Post’s Larry Brooks reports former Tampa Bay Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman is amenable to the possibility of becoming the next president of the New York Rangers. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Nothing’s set in stone here as the Rangers could consider other candidates, such as Columbus president John Davidson. Still, this report pokes a hole in the assumption that Yzerman is only interested in rejoining the Detroit Red Wings. 

Patrick Kane scored two goals as the Chicago Blackhawks rolled to a 6-1 win over the Dallas Stars. While the Stars are heading to the postseason, the loss prevents them from clinching the first wild-card spot in the Western Conference. 

Anaheim Ducks goaltender John Gibson kicked out 44 shots to backstop his club to a 5-2 victory over the Los Angeles Kings. 

TSN: Toronto Maple Leafs starting goalie Frederik Andersen avoided an injury scare during practice yesterday when he was struck in the left arm by a shot that left him in some pain. After treatment, he returned and finished the practice without any lingering issues. 

Meanwhile, the Leafs recalled Michael Hutchinson from their AHL affiliate. Backup Garret Sparks was placed on hiatus to work with the goalie coaches to address his recent struggles between the pipes. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: With concerns over Andersen’s heavy workload potentially affecting his performance as the playoffs approach, the Leafs are in a difficult situation with their backup goaltending. If Andersen’s struggles continue and neither Hutchinson or Sparks can effectively spell him off, they’ll face another early postseason exit. 

SPORTSNET: Former Arizona Coyotes players Craig Cunningham is skating again thanks to a new prosthetic skating leg. Cunningham had part of his left leg amputated due to complications following cardiac surgery in 2016. He’s now employed as a scout by the Coyotes. 










NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 6, 2019

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 6, 2019

It was a night of NHL milestones for several players and one coach. Check out the details in today’s morning coffee headlines. 

NHL.COMMontreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price tied Jacques Plante for most wins by a Habs goalie (314) with a 28-save effort in a 3-1 victory over the Los Angeles Kings. Teammate Brendan Gallagher scored his 30th of the season. Canadiens rookie Jesperi Kotkaniemi was a healthy scratch for the first time this season as coach Claude Julien felt the 18-year-old could use a bit of rest. With the win, the Canadiens (79 points) hold the second wild-card berth in the East. 

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price tied Jacques Plante for most wins by a Habs goalie. (Photo via NHL Images)

Sidney Crosby scored his 30th goal of the season and added two assists to reach 1,200 career points to lead the Pittsburgh Penguins over the Florida Panthers 3-2. Jake Guentzel scored twice, including the winner in overtime. The Penguins also honored center Matt Cullen for playing in his 1,500th career NHL game. With 79 points, the Penguins hold the first wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. 

Tampa Bay Lightning right winger Nikita Kucherov collected two assists to tie a franchise record of 108 points in a 5-2 victory over the Winnipeg Jets. Winnipeg goaltender Connor Hellebuyck was shaken up after taking a Kucherov shot off his mask in the second period but returned to finish the game. 

New York Islanders head coach Barry Trotz picked up his 800th career victory as his club edged the Ottawa Senators 5-4. It was a costly win for the Isles as starting goaltender Robin Lehner left the game late in the third period following a collision with Senators winger Brady Tkachuk. Earlier in the day, the Islanders recalled forwards Joshua Ho-Sang and Michael Dal Colle on an emergency basis. The Isles (89 points) move into a tie for first place in the Metropolitan Division with the Washington Capitals, 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: An update on Lehner’s status will likely be revealed today. It’s assumed he left the game for concussion protocol. 

The Boston Bruins extended their points streak to 17 games with a 4-3 overtime victory over the Carolina Hurricanes, who were playing in Hartford Whalers jerseys. David Krejci scored the winning goal. Sebastian Aho tallied twice for the Hurricanes. Bruins winger Marcus Johansson left the game in the second period following a hard shoulder-to-shoulder hit by Hurricanes left winger Micheal Ferland. Johansson was taken to hospital but coach Bruce Cassidy said the news of his condition could be “encouraging“. The Bruins (89 points) opened a three-point lead over the Toronto Maple Leafs for second place in the Atlantic Division. 

Ryan Johansen scored the only goal in a shootout as the Nashville Predators nipped the Minnesota Wild 5-4. Wild winger Kevin Fiala scored twice against his former team. With the win, the Predators (83 points) move one point ahead of the Jets for the top spot in the Central Division. The Wild (72 points) hold a two-point lead over the Colorado Avalanche for the final Western Conference wild-card spot. 

Dallas Stars goalie Ben Bishop turned in a 28-save shutout performance and John Klingberg scored the only goal in a 1-0 victory over the New York Rangers. Dallas forward Alexander Radulov was a healthy scratch as punishment for being late for a morning team meeting. The Stars (73 points) hold a one-point lead over the Wild. 

Nathan MacKinnon’s overtime goal gave the Colorado Avalanche a 4-3 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. MacKinnon had two points while linemate Mikko Rantanen had a three-point game. Red Wings defenseman Mike Green will be sidelined seven-to-ten days due to the recurrence of a liver virus. 

Shootout goals by Cam Atkinson and Artemi Panarin gave the Columbus Blue Jackets a 2-1 win over the New Jersey Devils, snapping a three-game losing skid. Devils forward Jesper Bratt left the game in the second period with an undisclosed injury. The Jackets (77 points) remain two points out of a wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference. 

The Anaheim Ducks defeated the Arizona Coyotes 3-1 to snap the latter’s six-game winning streak. The Coyotes (69 points) sit three points behind the Wild. Defenseman Jason Demers returned to the Coyotes lineup after being sidelined for four months. 

VANCOUVER SUN: Canucks center Brandon Sutter will undergo season-ending sports-hernia surgery. 

CHICAGO SUN-TIMES: The Blackhawks recalled goaltender Collin Delia as veteran Cam Ward is out seven-to-ten days with a knee injury. 

CALGARY SUN: Flames defenseman Michael Stone has been assigned to the club’s AHL affiliate in Stockton on a conditioning stint. Stone’s been sidelined since November 22 by a blood clot in his arm. 

STLTODAY: Blues center Brayden Schenn will rejoin the lineup after being sidelined since Feb. 19 with an upper-body injury. 

TORONTO SUN: The Maple Leafs re-signed backup goalie Garret Sparks to a one-year, $750K contract extension. 

TSN: NHL general managers could recommend a rule change forcing players to skate directly to the bench if they lose their helmet during gameplay. The players could also be forced to wear their helmets during pre-game warmups. Those recommendations will require the endorsement of the NHL Players Association. Another proposed change could give a team with a power play the choice of which side of the offensive zone they’ll take the faceoff.