NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 10, 2022
The Oilers’ Connor McDavid and the Canucks’ J.T. Miller lead their respective teams to victory in Wednesday’s action, former Sabres captain Jack Eichel prepare for his first game in Buffalo, and more in today’s NHL morning coffee headlines.
NHL.COM: Connor McDavid’s overtime goal lifted the Edmonton Oilers over the Washington Capitals 4-3. McDavid finished with two points to lead the league with 81 points, two up on teammate Leon Draisaitl. Washington center Nicklas Backstrom also had a goal and an assist to become the second player in franchise history to reach 1,000 career points. Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin was held scoreless and remains tied with Jaromir Jagr for third on the all-time goals list with 766.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s the sixth consecutive season McDavid has scored 30 goals and 80 points. The win puts the Oilers (66 points) one behind the Dallas Stars for the final Western Conference wild-card spot. With 72 points, the Capitals hold the final wild-card berth in the Eastern Conference, sitting one back of the Boston Bruins.
Vancouver Canucks center J.T. Miller extended his points streak to 10 games with a goal and three assists in a 5-3 victory over the Montreal Canadiens. Elias Pettersson and Bo Horvat each had a goal and an assist for the Canucks (64 points), who sit two points behind the Oilers. Canadiens forwards Artturi Lehkonen and Rem Pitlick each netted three points.
THE BUFFALO NEWS: Vegas Golden Knights center Jack Eichel claims he feels “no bitterness” against the Buffalo Sabres as he prepares to face his former club in Buffalo for the first time since being traded to Vegas last November. Eichel claimed he had a “phenomenal time” in Buffalo, adding the team and the city treated him and his family well.
It’s a slightly different tone from the one Eichel had in an interview filmed with ESPN a week ago in which he said he felt the Sabres were toying with him when they didn’t trade him last summer and stripped him of the captaincy in a phone call. However, he had already made his trade request and the club was trying to arrange a deal. He also wasn’t healthy enough to attend training camp due to his neck injury.
Pressed on those points, Eichel replied that he may have disagreed with some points over the way the situation was handled. He also said he felt a lot of pride in being the team captain and was unhappy over having the captaincy taken from him.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Eichel and the Golden Knights face off tonight against the Sabres with the latter planning a video tribute to him at some point during the game.
CALGARY HOCKEY NOW: Flames winger Johnny Gaudreau is reportedly ok after being shaken up by a hit from Capitals winger Tom Wilson during Tuesday’s game between the two clubs.
THE ATHLETIC: Los Angeles Kings forwards Viktor Arvidsson and Brendan Lemieux and defenseman Mikey Anderson are all listed as week-to-week. Arvidsson and Lemieux are sidelined by lower-body injuries while Anderson has an upper-body injury.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Losing Arvidsson is a significant blow as he’s second among Kings scorers this season with 18 goals and 38 points in 50 games. His absence could send management into the trade market for help.
STLTODAY.COM: Blues defenseman Scott Perunovich has been sidelined for eight weeks by wrist surgery.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Blues were reportedly in the market for a defenseman before Perunovich went down. This news will only stoke that speculation.
TSN: The Winnipeg Jets placed defenseman Nathan Beaulieu (lower body) on injury reserve and recalled blueliner Ville Heinola.
The Toronto Maple Leafs signed forward Kyle Clifford to a two-year contract extension worth $762,500 per season. They also inked defenseman Carl Dahlstrom to a one-year, two-way deal.
NBC SPORTS CHICAGO: The Blackhawks have brought back Norm Maciver as associate general manager. He’d previously been in the organization in various roles between 2006 and 2021 before departing to become director of player personnel for the Seattle Kraken.
MONTREAL GAZETTE: Hall-of-Famers Guy Lafleur, Lanny McDonald and Kim St-Pierre have been named to the Order of Hockey in Canada.
SPECTOR’S NOTE: Congratulations to Lafleur, McDonald and St-Pierre for this well-deserved honor.