NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 18, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 18, 2023

William Nylander continues his points streak as the Leafs rally to beat the Red Wings in Sweden while Aaron Ekblad and Brandon Montour return to the Panthers lineup. Details on these and other stories in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: Toronto Maple Leafs winger William Nylander extended his season-opening points streak to 16 games in a 3-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings at the NHL Global Series in Sweden. The Leafs were down 2-0 but Nylander rallied his teammates in the third period with a goal and two assists and was named the game’s first star. John Tavares also had a goal and two assists as the Leafs improved to 9-5-2. Daniel Sprong and Lucas Raymond scored for the 8-6-3 Red Wings.

Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Nylander has been the Leafs’ best player thus far this season. He’s their leading scorer with 25 points and sits second in goals with 11. He’s also among the league leaders in both categories. At this pace, he’ll become a serious candidate for the Hart Memorial Trophy as his team’s MVP.

Nylander’s strong performance in his contract year will also make the cost of re-signing him even more expensive for the Leafs. Reports out of Toronto since July claimed his camp was seeking an annual average value of $10 million. That figure could be between $11 million and $12 million now.

Red Wings defenseman Jake Walman left this game in the second period with an apparent upper-body injury. There was no postgame update on his condition.

Florida Panthers defensemen Aaron Ekblad and Brandon Montour made their season debuts as their club nipped the Anaheim Ducks 2-1. Eetu Luostarinen and Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored for the Panthers (11-5-1) as Anthony Stolarz made 34 saves for the win. Frank Vatrano replied for the Ducks (9-8-0) as John Gibson stopped 33 shots.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Ekblad and Montour had been sidelined by offseason shoulder surgeries. They were held scoreless but their return to the blueline was a welcome sight for the Panthers.

It was a costly win for the Panthers as team captain Aleksander Barkov left the game with an injured left knee in the third period after Ducks defenseman Jackson Lacombe stuck out his leg and struck Barkov. Lacome was initially assessed a five-minute major but it was reduced on review to two minutes. There was no postgame update on Barkov’s condition.

The Winnipeg Jets held off the Buffalo Sabres by a score of 3-2. Connor Hellebuyck turned aside 26 shots, Cole Perfetti extended his goal streak to five games while Nino Niederreiter and Vladislav Namestnikov each collected two assists for the 9-5-2 Jets. Alex Tuch and JJ Peterka replied for the Sabres as they slipped to 7-9-1.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sabres activated goaltender Eric Comrie and winger Zach Benson off injured reserve for this game while placing center Tage Thompson (left-hand injury) on IR.


THE HOCKEY NEWS: Arizona Coyotes center Barrett Hayton will be sidelined for four to six weeks as he undergoes surgery for an upper-body injury suffered against the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday.

Hayton’s teammate Matias Maccelli also left that game after being struck in the face by a puck. While he required “major dental surgery” he’s expected to be okay though it’s uncertain as to when he’ll return to the lineup.

MONTREAL GAZETTE: Canadiens defenseman Arber Xhekaj is listed as day-to-day after leaving Thursday’s game against the Vegas Golden Knights with an apparent injury to his left shoulder.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: There was concern that Xhekaj could miss considerable time if the injury was serious. That’s understandable considering he underwent season-ending surgery to his right shoulder in February. This news suggests that he might not be laid up for too long.

SAN JOSE HOCKEY NOW: Sharks center Nico Sturm will miss the next two games as he takes a leave of absence to attend to a personal matter.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: Capitals defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk (lower-body injury) and winger Anthony Mantha (ruptured eardrum) will return to the lineup for today’s game against the Columbus Blue Jackets.

PITTSBURGH HOCKEY NOW: Penguins backup goaltender Alex Nedeljkovic scored a goal for the club’s AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton on Friday against the Providence Bruins. It’s the second time he’s scored in AHL action during his career. He’s on loan to the Penguins’ farm team on a conditioning stint.

THE HOCKEY NEWS: The government of Quebec is facing criticism for paying upwards of $7 million to the Los Angeles Kings to play two preseason games next season in Quebec City against the Boston Bruins and Florida Panthers.

Critics believe that money could’ve been better spent on more pressing issues, especially when it was revealed that the Montreal Canadiens were willing to play some preseason games in Quebec City for free.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Someone on social media joked that Quebec City wanted to see real NHL teams rather than the Canadiens. It’s part of the province’s efforts to bring a team back to Quebec City. However, it’s unlikely to succeed given the more lucrative markets in Houston, Atlanta and Salt Lake City that are expected to be the next destinations for NHL expansion franchises. 

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 10, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 10, 2023

The Sharks upset the Oilers, Connor Bedard sets a Blackhawks record while the Jets’ Kyle Connor and the Bruins’ Charlie Coyle enjoy hat-trick performances. Details on these stories and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.


NHL.COM: The San Jose Sharks got a 39-save performance from Mackenzie Blackwood to hold off the Edmonton Oilers 3-2. Tomas Hertl and Fabian Zetterlund each had a goal and an assist for the 2-10-1 Sharks. Darnell Nurse and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins replied for 2-9-1 Oilers, who are tied with the Sharks with a league-worst five points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The arse has gone out of it for the free-falling Oilers. This could be Jay Woodcroft’s final game as their head coach. Whether a new bench boss can save their season remains to be seen given their porous goaltending, sloppy defensive play and lack of production but they have to do something.

Chicago Blackhawks center Connor Bedard (NHL Images).

Chicago Blackhawks rookie Connor Bedard became the youngest player in franchise history to have a multipoint game in a 5-3 upset of the Tampa Bay Lightning. Bedard scored twice and set up two others while Nick Foligno collected three assists for the Blackhawks (5-7-0). Anthony Cirelli, Nikita Kucherov and Steven Stamkos replied for the Lightning as they slipped to 6-4-4.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Bedard is also the youngest player since 1944 with a four-point game. He now leads all rookies this season with seven goals and 11 points. Meanwhile, Blackhawks winger Andreas Athanasiou left the game in the second period with an undisclosed injury.

The Boston Bruins downed the New York Islanders 5-2 thanks to Charlie Coyle potting his first career NHL hat trick. Coyle finished with four points while David Pastrnak had a goal and two assists as the Bruins (23 points) took over first place in the overall standings with a record of 11-1-1. Ilya Sorokin made 30 saves for the Islanders as they dropped to 5-4-3.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Bruins activated forward Jakub Lauko off injured reserve but he didn’t skate in this game. They also placed forward Morgan Geekie (upper body) on injured reserve. Meanwhile, Islanders defenseman Adam Pelech missed this contest with a lower-body injury.

Winnipeg Jets winger Kyle Connor tallied a hat trick to lead his club over the Nashville Predators by a score of 6-3. Connor finished the night with four points while Mark Scheifele had four assists as the Jets rose to 7-4-2. Filip Forsberg scored twice for the 5-8-0 Predators.

An overtime goal by Cole Caufield lifted the Montreal Canadiens over the Detroit Red Wings 3-2, snapping their four-game losing skid. Cayden Primeau made 27 saves for the win in his first game since Oct. 24 while Mike Matheson had a goal and two assists as the Canadiens improved to 6-5-2. Christian Fischer and JT Compher replied for the 7-5-2 Red Wings as they’re winless in their last four (0-3-1).

New York Rangers winger Artemi Panarin collected a goal and an assist to extend his season-opening points streak to 13 games in a 4-1 victory over the Minnesota Wild. Alexis Lafreniere and Vincent Trocheck each had a goal and two assists while Louis Domingue stopped 25 shots in his first NHL game since 2021-22 as the Rangers improved to 10-2-1. Brandon Duhaime replied for the Wild as they fell to 5-6-2.

The Vancouver Canucks (10-2-1) extended their win streak to five games and pushed their points streak to nine games as they beat the Ottawa Senators 5-2. Elias Pettersson took over the lead in the NHL scoring race (24 points) with a goal and two assists while Ilya Mikheyev tallied twice. Drake Batherson and Artem Zub replied for the 5-7-0 Senators as they’re at the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings with 10 points.

Dallas Stars forward Matt Duchene had a goal and two assists as his club overcame a 2-0 deficit with a 5-2 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets. Jake Oettinger stopped 27 shots as the Stars improved to 8-3-1 on the season. Boone Jenner and Kirill Marchenko replied for the Blue Jackets as they dropped to 4-6-3.

St. Louis Blues center Robert Thomas scored the game-winner as his club nipped the Arizona Coyotes 2-1. It was Thomas’ fifth straight goal as his club improved to 6-5-1. Lawson Crouse replied for the 6-6-1 Coyotes.

The Seattle Kraken (5-6-3) blew a 3-1 lead but still defeated the Colorado Avalanche 4-3 as Oliver Bjorkstand scored his second goal of the game with 32 seconds remaining in the third period. Nathan MacKinnon had a goal and two assists for the 8-4-0 Avalanche as they dropped their first home game of the season.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Avalanche also lost forward Artturi Lehkonen in the second period after falling face-first into the boards. He was taken to a local hospital as a precaution and is reportedly alert, responsive and has full movement of his limbs. An update on his condition could be released on Friday.

An overtime goal by Bryan Rust gave the Pittsburgh Penguins a 4-3 win over the Los Angeles Kings (8-2-3). Penguins captain Sidney Crosby had his 450th career multipoint game with a goal and an assist while Erik Karlsson collected two assists as the Penguins improved to 6-6-0 with their third straight victory. Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar collected an assist to move into second place on the franchise’s all-time points list with 1,155.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kopitar has a ways to go to catch franchise leader Marcel Dionne’s 1,307 points.


THE PROVINCE: Former Vancouver Canucks great Trevor Linden slammed the club’s former general manager Jim Benning. Linden, who as team president hired Benning in 2014, claimed the former GM probably wouldn’t have chosen Elias Pettersson in the 2017 NHL Draft if he’d had the choice.

Benning refuted Linden’s story, claiming the decision to select Pettersson was a group one. “We were always going to draft Pettersson. The whole group like Petey,” he said.

Benning added that he felt the scouting group hadn’t watched other players enough and wanted them to conduct their due diligence. He called rumors that he liked another player over Pettersson “simply not true,” adding that he told team owner Francesco Aquilini he was drafting the young center the night before the draft.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This sad little attempt at a pissing contest serves no purpose and changes nothing regardless of whose side of the story you believe. The Canucks chose Pettersson, who is currently the NHL’s leading scorer and a big reason why the club is off to its best start in years.

THE ATHLETIC: Peter Baugh reports Kraken winger Jordan Eberle is doing well after suffering a deep cut to his leg from a skate blade during practice on Wednesday. He’s listed as day-to-day.

CBS SPORTS/DAILY FACEOFF: The Washington Capitals placed defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk (lower body) on injured reserve and announced winger Anthony Mantha is day-to-day after taking a puck to the ear during Wednesday’s game against the Florida Panthers.

CALGARY SUN: The Flames have recalled goaltender Dustin Wolf amid speculation that starting goalie Jacob Markstrom could be nursing an injury.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 27, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 27, 2023

Recaps of Tuesday’s preseason action plus the latest on Rangers winger Artemi Panarin, Sharks captain Logan Couture, and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NHL.COM: Blake Wheeler scored in his debut with the New York Rangers as they doubled up the New York Islanders 4-2.

New York Rangers winger Artemi Panarin (NHL Images).

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Rangers forwards Artemi Panarin (lower-body injury)and Filip Chytil (upper body) missed this game and are listed as day-to-day.

The Anaheim Ducks dropped the San Jose Sharks 4-2 with Sam Carrick getting a goal and two assists.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Speaking of the Sharks, team captain Logan Couture (lower-body, week-to-week) is skating again. However, they’re being cautious with his return date even if it means missing their season opener against the Vegas Golden Knights on Oct. 12.

Alex DeBrincat picked up two assists in his debut with the Detroit Red Wings in a 4-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Speaking of the Penguins, defenseman Mark Pysyk will be sidelined “longer-term” with an undisclosed injury. He’s in training camp on a professional tryout offer (PTO).

Buffalo Sabres goaltender Devon Levi stopped all 19 shots he faced over two periods in a 4-1 victory over the Boston Bruins. Devin Cooley made 18 saves in the third period for the Sabres.

Tony DeAngelo had a goal and an assist in his first game back with the Carolina Hurricanes to defeat the Tampa Bay Lightning 5-2.

The St. Louis Blues scored three first-period goals over the Columbus Blue Jackets and held on for a 3-2 win.

Dallas Stars forwards Jason Robertson, Mason Marchment and Tyler Seguin each had a goal and an assist to thump the Minnesota Wild 6-1.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: Capitals defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk resumed skating yesterday after leaving Sunday’s preseason game after being struck by a shot on the right arm. Meanwhile, blueliner Joel Edmundson missed practice after suffering an upper-body injury during a scrimmage on Sunday.

THE PROVINCE: Canucks forward Ilya Mikheyev joined his teammates yesterday in his first practice since suffering a knee injury in January. He hasn’t yet gained clearance for full participation but this is considered a promising sign.

TSN: The NHL and Adidas revealed the uniforms the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers will wear for the 2023 Heritage Classic at Commonwealth Stadium in Edmonton on Oct. 29.

NHL.COM: Goaltender Cory Schneider announced his retirement on Tuesday. In 410 NHL games (389 starts) with the Vancouver Canucks, New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders, Schneider had a record of 171 wins, 159 losses and 58 overtime losses with a 2.43 goals-against average, a .918 save percentage and 26 shutouts. He and Roberto Luongo won the Jennings Trophy for the league’s lowest combined goals-against in 2010-11.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before injuries derailed his career, Schneider was among the league’s top goaltenders. As per NHL.com’s Tom Gulitti, from 2010-11 through 2015-16, Schneider’s 2.13 GAA and .926 SP ranked first among all goalies with at least 100 games played during that stretch.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 25, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 25, 2023

Attainable milestones for the upcoming season plus the latest on Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, Rangers center Mika Zibanejad and more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NHL.COM: has a complete roundup of Sunday’s preseason action.

THE SCORE: Several NHL players are in line to reach league milestones this season.

Washington Capitals captain Alex Ovechkin is within one goal of becoming the first player in league history to tally 300 career power-play goals. He’s also just 15 points away from reaching 1,500 career points.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby (NHL Images).

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby needs 88 points to tie Phil Esposito for 10th on the all-time points list. Esposito has 1,590 points.

Phil Kessel, the league’s reigning Ironman record holder, is just eight points away from reaching 1,000 career points. That’s assuming the 35-year-old unrestricted free agent finds a new contract with an NHL club. Toronto Maple Leafs captain John Tavares is 25 points away from 1,000.

Twenty players, including Nashville’s Ryan O’Reilly, Minnesota’s Marc-Andre Fleury, Tampa Bay’s Victor Hedman, Vegas’ Alex Pietrangelo, Boston’s Brad Marchand and Pittsburgh’s Erik Karlsson, could reach 1,000 career games.

TAMPA BAY TIMES: Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy has yet to suit up for training camp as he deals with an undisclosed injury. Tampa Bay coach Jon Cooper said Vasilevskiy is “wrestling with some things right now physically” and is considered day-to-day.

NEW YORK POST: Rangers center Mika Zibanejad is listed as day-to-day after leaving scrimmage on Sunday with an upper-body injury.

CAP FRIENDLY: The Seattle Kraken have officially removed winger Andre Burakovsky off injured reserved. He’d been on IR since Feb. 9.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Kraken managed to adjust to Burakovsky’s absence as they reached the playoffs for the first time in franchise history. Nevertheless, he helped set the stage for that success with 39 points in 49 games before suffering a torn groin.

WASHINGTON HOCKEY NOW: Capitals defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk will be evaluated today after leaving Sunday’s preseason game against the Buffalo Sabres. He was struck in the right arm by a shot in the third period, left the game and didn’t return.

TRIBLIVE.COM: Alex Nedeljkovic is hoping a fresh start with the Pittsburgh Penguins will help reset his career after two unsatisfying seasons with the Detroit Red Wings. He was a finalist for the Calder Memorial Trophy in 2020-21 with the Carolina Hurricanes but struggled to replicate that success after getting traded to the Red Wings.

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 12, 2023

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – March 12, 2023

The Bruins become the fastest team in history to reach 50 wins, Leafs winger Mitch Marner collects four points to beat the Oilers and Lightning captain Steven Stamkos sidelined by an injured leg. Details and much more in today’s NHL Morning Coffee Headlines.

NHL.COM: The Boston Bruins defeated the Detroit Red Wings 3-2 to become the fastest team in league history to reach 50 wins in a season by doing so in their 64th game. They overcame a 2-0 deficit on goals by Hampus Lindholm, Patrice Bergeron and Garnet Hathaway. With a record of 50-9-5, the Bruins lead the league with 105 points and became the first team this season to clinch a playoff berth. The Red Wings fell to 29-27-9 on the season.

Toronto Maple Leafs winger Mitch Marner (NHL Images).

Toronto Maple Leafs winger Mitch Marner had a goal and three assists as his club overcame a 3-1 deficit to beat the Edmonton Oilers 7-4. John Tavares and Noel Acciari each scored two goals while Auston Matthews tallied his 30th of the season for the 40-17-8 Maple Leafs, who sit in second place in the Atlantic Division with 88 points. Connor McDavid had a goal and two assists for the Oilers (36-23-8) as they hold the first Western Conference wild-card berth with 80 points.

The Tampa Bay Lightning’s 3-1 win over the Chicago Blackhawks was overshadowed by a leg injury suffered by captain Steven Stamkos during the first period. Brayden Point scored twice for the 39-21-6 Lightning (84 points) as they remain four points back of the Leafs in third place in the Atlantic Division. The Blackhawks dropped to 22-38-6.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Early indications are the injury may not be as serious as originally feared. He was seen in the dressing room following the game walking normally without a limp.

A 33-save performance from Jonathan Quick carried the Vegas Golden Knights to a 4-0 shutout of the Carolina Hurricanes. Jonathan Marchessault, Reilly Smith, Paul Cotter and Brett Howden scored for the Golden Knights (40-20-6), who sit atop the Western Conference with 86 points. The Hurricanes (43-13-8) sit second in the overall standings with 94 points.

New Jersey Devils forward Dawson Mercer collected an assist to extend his points streak to 12 games in a 3-1 win over the Montreal Canadiens. Nico Hischier had a goal and an assist for the 43-16-6 Devils as they moved to within two points of the Hurricanes in third overall. The Canadiens (26-34-6) have dropped six straight games.

The Winnipeg Jets defeated the Florida Panthers 5-4 on two goals by Mark Scheifele, including the winner in overtime. Kyle Connor, Nikolaj Ehlers and Vladislav Namestnikov each had three points as the Jets improved to 37-26-3, sitting in the final Western Conference wild-card berth with 77 points. Matthew Tkachuk scored twice and collected an assist as the Panthers (33-27-7) sit three points out of the final Eastern Conference wild-card spot with 73 points.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a costly win for the Jets as Josh Morrissey and Adam Lowry left this game with lower-body injuries. They’re doubtful for today’s game against the Lightning.

An overtime goal by Cale Makar gave the Colorado Avalanche a 3-2 win over the Arizona Coyotes. Nathan MacKinnon and Mikko Rantanen each collected two points for the 36-22-6 Avalanche, who sit third in the Central Division with 78 points. Connor Ingram made 41 saves for the Coyotes as they slipped to 23-32-11.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Makar set a franchise record for Avalanche defensemen with five overtime goals.

Minnesota Wild goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 35 shots to down the San Jose Sharks 5-2. Mats Zuccarello, Jared Spurgeon, Matt Boldy and Marcus Johansson each had a goal and an assist for the Wild (38-21-7), who sit second in the Central Division with 83 points. Erik Karlsson collected an assist to set a single-season points record for Sharks defensemen with 84 points. The Sharks dropped to 19-36-12.

Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan picked up his 400th career NHL win in a 5-1 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. Jake Guentzel and Mikael Granlund each had a goal and an assist for the 33-22-10 Penguins as they hold the first Eastern wild-card berth with 76 points. The Flyers fell to 24-31-11.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Penguins center Nick Bonino underwent a surgical procedure to repair a lacerated kidney suffered during Thursday’s loss to the New York Islanders. He’s listed as week-to-week.

The New York Rangers got an overtime goal from Artemi Panarin to nip the Buffalo Sabres 2-1. Patrick Kane also scored for the Rangers (37-19-9) as they sit third in the Metropolitan Division with 83 points. Jeff Skinner replied for the 32-28-5 Sabres, who sit seven points behind the New York Islanders for the final Eastern wild-card spot.

Speaking of the Islanders, they dropped a 5-1 decision to the Washington Capitals. Rasmus Sandin collected three assists for the Capitals (32-28-7), who sit five points back of the Islanders with 71 points. Pierre Engvall scored for the 34-26-8 Islanders, who welcomed back Cal Clutterbuck into the lineup after he missed 20 games with a lower-body injury.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Before this game, the Capitals announced the signing of Trevor van Riemsdyk to a three-year, $9 million contract extension. The average annual value is $3 million.

A shootout goal by Matt Duchene lifted the Nashville Predators over the Los Angeles Kings 2-1. Tommy Novak also scored and Kevin Lankinen made 26 saves for the 32-24-7 Predators, who sit six points behind the Jets for the final Western wild-card berth. The Kings (38-20-9) played without Kevin Fiala, who is day-to-day with a lower-body injury. They sit second in the Pacific Division with 85 points.

The Dallas Stars got an overtime goal from Miro Heiskanen in a 4-3 win over the Seattle Kraken. Heiskanen and Roope Hintz each finished with two points while Joe Pavelski tallied the tying goal for the 36-17-13 Stars, who hold first place in the Central Division with 85 points. Vince Dunn had two assists for the 37-22-7 Kraken as they sit third in the Pacific Division with 81 points.

St. Louis Blues forward Jordan Kyrou tallied a hat trick to beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 5-2. Sammy Blais had a goal and two assists for the 29-31-5 Blues while Patrik Laine and Boone Jenner replied for the 20-38-7 Blue Jackets.

The Vancouver Canucks got two goals from Andrei Kuzmenko in a 5-2 win over the Ottawa Senators. The Canucks improved to 28-32-5 and have gone 7-2-1 in their last 10 games. Tim Stutzle collected two assists for the 33-28-4 Senators as they sit six points out of the final Eastern wild-card berth.