NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 2, 2011.

In this morning’s collection of notable NHL headlines: Rangers coach calls out Sharks’ Joe Thornton for disparaging remarks…Capitals coach benches Alexander Ovechkin…Ducks ageless winger Teemu Selanne continues his high-scoring ways…Andy Sutton suspended for five games…Devils struggling to score…Ville Leino has slow start with Sabres…Sean Avery cleared re-entry waivers.


Thornton's comment infuriates Rangers coach.

NEW YORK POST: Rangers outspoken head coach John Tortorella wasn’t pleased with San Jose Sharks forward Joe Thornton calling the Blueshirts “soft” following his club’s loss to the Rangers earlier this week.

“It caught me off guard when Stan [Fischler] brought it up after the game,’’ Tortorella said. “It surprised me. I never heard a player say that. Joe’s a heckuva player. But here’s a player popping off about our team.

“Joe hasn’t won a damned thing in this league. He could go down as one of the better players in our league never to win anything. So what he should do is just shut up. It was uncalled for. It was classless. I’ve never had it happen like that before.’’

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s a shame these teams aren’t in the same conference, or division, because this could’ve turned into one of the biggest rivalries of the season! Whether you love or hate Tortorella, you’ve gotta admit, his outspokenness can be entertaining. As much as I hate to say it, Tortorella’s got a point regarding Thornton.

WASHINGTON POST: Capitals head coach Bruce Boudreau raised eyebrows when he benched captain Alexander Ovechkin in the final minute of their game against the Anaheim Ducks to force overtime, which the Capitals subsequently did en route to a 5-4 overtime victory.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This will get played up by the press, but Boudreau isn’t afraid to let his players know who’s boss, and to let them know when he doesn’t think one of them is playing well, even the franchise player. I know, some folks will say, “don’t show up your franchise guy”, but Boudreau’s there to coach, to have the best players on the ice in key situations, and in his opinion, Ovechkin wasn’t among his best in that particular game. The fact the Capitals rallied to tie, force overtime and win only justified his judgement in this case.

ORANGE COUNTY REGISTER: Teemu Selanne currently leads the Anaheim Ducks in scoring, with 14 points in twelve games.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Why is this notable? Because he’s 41 friggin’ years old, that’s why! He’s outscoring teammates who are in their twenties. He’s also currently among the top ten scorers in the league. Yes, yes, I know, only early in the season, he probably won’t maintain that pace…but I wouldn’t bet against “The Finnish Flash”.

KUKLA’S KORNER: The NHL has suspended Edmonton Oilers defenseman for five games for an illegal hit to the head of Colorado Avalanche forward Gabriel Landeskog.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Good call by the league, as Sutton had plenty of time to avoid contact with Landeskog’s head.

NEW YORK POST: The New Jersey Devils are struggling to score this season, giving rise to concerns the same problems which bedeviled them last season are happening again.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It’s a problem which could force GM Lou Lamoriello into the trade market. They can’t blame this on the coach, as the loss of Travis Zajac hurts their first line production.

CSNPHILLY.COM: Former Flyers forward Ville Leino is struggling with his new team, the Buffalo Sabres.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sabres definitely haven’t got their money’s worth from Leino, whom they signed for big bucks as a UFA this summer

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS: Rangers forward Sean Avery passed unclaimed through re-entry waivers yesterday and will rejoin their lineup.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Is anyone honestly surprised by this? Anyone? Bueller? Bueller?


  1. Screw Thornton. And tell him to give Jagr his Hart trophy back. Douche.

  2. Joe Thorton is just an overgrown cheap shot that will never win a dam thing. If Rangers were so “soft” then why didn’t you beat them? Maybe becasue your team is even softer?

  3. Thornton maybe felt some sour grapes there. Pretty unacceptable at that level. Good on Tortorella for calling him out.

    Im not surprised Averys back … just disapointed.

  4. Thorton is the man. Torts should stop running his mouth most, classless coach in the league. plus thorton has won more gold then most of the rangers combined. his coment just got blown out of proportion. plus they have avery on there team, shouldNT they just keep there mouth shut. i WANT A REMATCH MAYBE STANLEY CUP FINAL….

  5. Teemu is a legend and I love to see him have sucess. An overall great guy who plays the game with passion and integrity. He will hit 80 pts again this season, regardless of age. A lock for the HOF.

    I agree with Torts completely. Thornton calling someone soft is throwing stones from a glass house.

  6. Joe’s got a Hart and Art Ross in the league, plus a gold medal outside. More than 95% of players. Torts did a mircle and won a cup somehow with Richards, Vinny, St. Louis and Khabby all in their prime. I don’t want to call him a miricle worker, cuz I think even Joe “blow” Thorton could have coached that team to the cup. and joe would have done it without Cslgary actually winning the cup but losing it on a missed goal call.

  7. Who goes first ovi or Bruce? It’s been pretty clear the last few seasons Bruce isn’t the biggest fan of #8’s game.

  8. Ovi has become too predictable in the NHL and Bruce is just a slob.

  9. Torts could of been meaner, as he could of said that Boston traded Thornton in order to give themselves a better chance at winning the cup.Or, I have my cup ring, where is yours ?

  10. Problem with Leino is that he has played out of position – agreed to play Center when in fact he has been playing LW for years. Also he has been rotating lines – Lindy is known for not having a lot of patience and as such he will tinker with his lines. I believe that Leino really hasn’t had the opportunity to form chemistry with the lines he has been on and he has also tried to do too much. Tonight he will center Vanek and Pomminville – if he can’t find chemistry with them, then I would say he is a bust. The season is young and Leino just needs to regain his confidence and find his game. Other players have gone through it – I don’t think Brad has found his game yet – there are flashes, but not consistency. Joining a new club and adjusting to new teammates can take a little time. I think sometimes players that sign big contracts try to do too much to justify their contract and then it effects their play. Anyway, I don’t think its time to judge the signing – just let him play and work it out.

  11. Bruce put out the 3rd line for the final shift, plus Backstrom, because they had something like a combined 7 points that game. They were rewarded for playing well, Ovie wasn’t benched. He was still out there in OT, and assisted on the winning goal. This whole thing is being blown way out of proportion.

  12. Is anybody actually surprised that Leino is proving to be a bust in Buffalo? Maybe this will teach the Sabres dumb new owner (who everybody said would be the savior of Buffalo) that you can’t buy a stanley cup.