NHL Morning Coffee Headlines – November 27, 2011.

Capitals slide continues…Stars lose Kari Lehtonen…Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews improves all-round performance…Ilya Bryzgalov’s uneven start with Flyers…Red Wings lose Patrick Eaves to broken jaw…Chris Kelly starring for Bruins…Brett Hull could join group interested in purchasing Blues…The sad sack Islanders…Is NHL snubbing Western Conference teams with its TV coverage?

WASHINGTON POST: The Capitals unraveled again, this time falling 5-1 to the injury-decimated Buffalo Sabres.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: The Sabres were ripe for the picking by the Capitals, but once again they failed to take advantage of the situation. This loss will only keep the speculation over the job security of head coach Bruce Boudreau, and the decline of captain Alexander Ovechkin, in the headlines.

Lehtonen sidelined by groin injury.

DALLASNEWS.COM: Star goaltender Kari Lehtonen suffered a groin injury against the Phoenix Coyotes last night.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: This could be a serious blow if Lehtonen is sidelined for any significant period of time. He’s been their best player and one of the reasons they’re off to a good start this season. It could push management into the trade market for help if his backups are unable to adequately replace him.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE: The evolution of Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews as one of the league’s top two-way forwards.

PHILLY.COM: Ilya Bryzgalov’s off to a shaky start in his first season with the Flyers.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: As expected, Bryzgalov is needing a period of adjustment to his new team and city,  among the most demanding markets in the NHL. He has the talent, however, to overcome his inconsistency and should improve as the season progresses and he grow more comfortable with the Flyers.

DETROIT FREE PRESS: The Red Wings lost forward Patrick Eaves to a broken jaw after his was struck in the head by the puck attempting to block a shot during the Wings 4-1 win over the Nashville Predators.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: It was a scary moment, and hopefully he won’t be sidelined for long.

BOSTON GLOBE: Chris Kelly has been doing a first rate job on the Bruins third line.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Kelly was one of the best acquisitions made by the Bruins last season, and continues to pay dividends for them.

STLTODAY.COM: Hall of Famer Brett Hull is reportedly interested in joining a group making a bid to purchase the St. Louis Blues.

NEW YORK POST: Larry Brooks tears into the New York Islanders, saying they “finally have crossed the line that separates objects of pity from objects of scorn, once again the worst team in the NHL and this time without any excuse other than the franchise’s ineptitude that runs from the top down.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Can’t say I disagree with this assessment.

DENVER POST: Adrian Dater accuses the NHL of snubbing the Western Conference with its television coverage.


  1. Having grown up during the Islanders dynasty it is pretty sad to see what a joke the franchise has become. They have been re-building with high draft picks for ages yet are somehow still no further ahead of where they were at the start of the rebuild. It also makes me sad as a Ryan Strome fan to know that he is going to an organization with a long history of drafting busts and ruining talented prospects. Top 10 picks like Okposo, Bailey, Niederreiter and even Tavares have been relatively disappointing so far in their careers. Tavares is obviously a very good player but he still hasn’t become the superstar people expected him to be.

    The Islanders finally looked like they were starting to build an identity last season when they had the toughest team in the league with Gillies, Konopka, Martin and Haley but then they go and put Gillies on waivers and don’t re-sign Konopka and all of a sudden they are one of the softest, most pathetic bunch of floaters in the NHL.

    It’s long past time to fire Snow and bring in somebody who actually knows how to build a team instead of just bringing in a bunch of random players and expecting them to be able to mesh as a cohesive unit.

  2. Islanders need an overhaul and it isn’t on the ice. GM and Coach need to go. The fact they just ruined and waived a 20+ goal scorer, Nino is riding the box, the team is just handling things very poorly and they need to be better. This is sad there is so much talent on the Isles and its not being developed right and the proper signings just aren’t being made.

  3. Islanders need to shut down shop, disband, and start all over again somewhere else. There seems to be no other way for this franchise to ever turn the corner.

    Ovi will bounce back once Washington finds a coach that will use him properly.

  4. The Islanders problem is the owner, who is a serious micromanager. He wants to run everyone and only hire yes-men. Snow has proven to be a very adept yes-man.

    What person in their right mind would pass up Luke Schenn and draft Josh Bailey?!!! The guy is now centering their fourth line and can’t even beat out Mary Reasoner for cripes sake. (No, that’s not a typo).

    Brooks is correct; that organization is incompetent.

  5. A day late and a dollar short, Brooks. This would have been breaking news two years ago. But my distaste for Larry Brooks knows no end… Maybe Garth Snow is just doing this because he’s part of a covert infiltrator from the Flyers organization. Now wouldn’t that be a … (wait for it) fly (there it is) conspiracy . I’m waiting for the day Pronger can’t hang in the NHL anymore so the Islanders can ship most of their talented players to Philly for Pronger, a bag of canes, and a “gently used” tee shirt cannon from the Philadelphia Phantoms intermission crew. And then my conspiracy theory won’t just be theory anymore.