NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 25, 2017

NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – September 25, 2017

The Pittsburgh Penguins visited the White House in 2016.

Penguins accept White House invitation plus updates on Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Robby Fabbri & more in your NHL morning coffee headlines. 

TRIBLIVE.COM: The Pittsburgh Penguins yesterday issued a statement announcing their intention to accept an invitation to the White House to commemorate their 2017 Stanley Cup championship.

This comes a day after President Donald Trump rescinded an invitation to the NBA’s Golden State Warrior after star Steph Curry said he and his teammates didn’t want to go. It was also in the midst of NFL protests Sunday over Trump’s derisive comments against players who take a knee during the national anthem in protest over police brutality against the African-American community. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: What was once merely a formality has become a heated subject. From what I saw yesterday on social media, the Penguins’ announcement was largely condemned by pundits and bloggers but received a mixed reaction among NHL fans. The Penguins organization are taking pains to stress they’re accepting the invitation out of tradition and is not in any way supportive of President Trump’s views, but that hasn’t appeased critics of their decision. 

ARIZONA SPORTS: Coyotes captain Oliver Ekman-Larsson suffered no structural damage to his left knee and is listed as day-to-day. He suffered the injury during a preseason game on Saturday against the San Jose Sharks. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Coyotes are understandably relieved that Ekman-Larsson won’t be sidelined for a lengthy period. They’re already missing Jakub Chychrun (knee injury) from their blueline. Losing their best rearguard would’ve been a serious blow. 

STLTODAY.COM: Blues forward Robby Fabbri re-injured his surgically repaired left knee and is sidelined for the remainder of the preseason. He will be reevaluated in 10 days. 

SPECTOR’S NOTE: A disappointing setback for Fabbri, who was hoping for a bounce-back performance this season. 

OTTAWA SUN: Senators defenseman Dion Phaneuf is looking forward to playing a preseason game in Summerside, Prince Edward Island tonight. The Sens face off in a preseason match against the New Jersey Devils in the Kraft Hockeyville Game. Phaneuf’s parents are originally from Summerside and he spends the offseason living near Cavendish, PEI. The town of O’Leary, PEI won the Hockeyville competition but the game is being played in Summerside’s Credit Union Place. 

MONTREAL GAZETTE:  A league review of NHL score sheets from 1917 to 1987 resulted in Canadiens legend Maurice (Rocket) Richard being credited with an additional assist, raising his career points total to 966. 

THE ATHLETIC: Montreal Canadiens assistant GM Rick Dudley, Columbus Blue Jackets assistant coach Brad Shaw, former NHL coach Steve Ludzik and former Buffalo Sabre Peter Ciavaglia were among several notables who took part in Craig Custance’s fascinating oral history of the now-defunct IHL’s Detroit Vipers.