NHL Stanley Cup Qualifier podcast with Matt Harrington: Hockey is back after a 142 day wait; Oilers and Leafs will be like the host teams in tournament; plus more

Victor Hedmon of the Tampa Bay Lightning goes for the goal scoring victory lap in front of the Lightning bench before the NHL suspended all games in March. Hedmon will be in the line up against the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight at Rogers Centre Arena in Edmonton for the Qualifiers (photo from rawcharge.com file photo)

On the NHL Qualifier podcast with Matt:

#1 Matt after 142 days the NHL is back and the qualifiers begin with five games today it will be 52 games in nine days and the teams involved will have their work cut out for them.

#2 Matt talk about the advantage that all teams have not being able to travel and just to return to their hotel room after games.

#3 The Edmonton Oilers will have home ice in the Western Conference will that make a difference for them they won’t have their home crowd behind them so will it make things pretty even?

#4 Talk about the Tampa Bay Lightning’s Victor Hedman who was not in practice since the Lightining have been the bubble. It was reported he was in Tampa Bay working out but is expected to join the team according to Bolts head coach Jon Cooper.

#5 In exhibition play against the Boston Bruins, the Columbus Blue Jackets forward Liam Foudy assisted on a goal passing to teammate Boon Jenner at 4:27, Foudy got two shots on goals and three hits in 12:45 of ice time and will be in the line up against the Toronto Maple Leafs tonight at Scotiabank Arena.

Matt takes a look at the Stanley Cup Playoffs each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com



NHL Stanley Cup Qualifier podcast with Matt Harrington: Taking a look at the NHL Stanley Cup Qualifiers schedule

The Stanley Cup Qualifiers starts Aug 1st with the Eastern Conference in Toronto and the Western Conference Qualifiers in Edmonton on Aug 2 (photo from sports.yahoo.com)

Matt Harrington on NHL podcast:

#1 Matt lets take a look at the first two games of the qualifiers starting on Aug 1st in Scotiabank Arena in Toronto with the Carolina Hurricanes and the New York Rangers and The Chicago Blackhawks and Edmonton Oilers

#2 The next two games Florida Panthers and New York Islanders and Montreal Canadians and Pittsburgh Penguins.

#3 Here’s some excitement that will keep Alberta Cup Crazy the Calgary Flames and the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place in Edmonton host of the Western Conference qualifiers.

#4 August 2nd the Arizona Coyotes and Nashville Predators, in the Round Robins Boston and Philadelphia, and St Louis and Colorado

#5 More qualifiers Rogers Centre in Toronto for Sun Aug 2; John Tortorella and the Columbus Blue Jackets meet the home town favorites the Toronto Maple Leafs then back to Edmonton for Minnesota Wild and the Vancouver Canucks.

Catch Matt each Saturday for complete coverage of the Stanley Cup Playoffs at http://www.sportsradioservice.com



NHL podcast with Matt Harrington: Bruins Pastrnak and Kase were not disciplined for extra practices on social media

The Boston Bruins David Pastrnak show here during the Winter Classic was not disciplined with teammate Ondrej Kase for practicing in a different rink that was videoed and posted on social media both were ruled unfit for practice on Thursday and Friday (pinterest.com file photo)

On Headlines with Matt:

#1 Matt you remember when being called a goat meant you were at the bottom of the food chain on a sports roster but now being a goat is a great thing . The Greatest Of All Time for hockey right now stands with the Great One Wayne Gretzky.

#2 The Boston Bruins David Pastrnak missed his second straight day of practice as the B’s reported Pastrnak was unfit to practice and forward Ondrej Kase who practiced on Wednesday missed practices on Thursday and Friday.

#3 Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy was asked if the missed practices were related to social media photos of Pastrnak and Kase working out at a different rinks. Cassidy said no that is not the case and no one has been disciplined.

#4 Pastrnak was in practice on Wednesday as he was held up due to quarantine issues when he returned from the Czech Republic but was not out due to discipline issues on Thursday and Friday practices.

#5 The Bruins take on the Washington Capitals, Tampa Bay Lightning, and the Philadelphia Flyers for the round robin Stanley Cup qualifiers in Toronto and it all gets started on August 1st.

Join Matt each Saturday for NHL podcasts at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington: Bruins enter post season coming off 100 point season; Rangers Lundqvist glad to be back in NHL camp; plus more

nhl.com file photo: The Boston Bruins had a 100 point lead tops in the NHL before the regular season was suspended due to the pandemic

On Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington:

#1 The Boston Bruins had an 100 point lead and should be have been the number team for the Stanley Cup Playoffs but with the playoff format despite the 100 points it looks more like a level playing surface going into these playoffs.

#2 Talk about David Pastrnak who became the first player since Phil Esposito to lead the NHL tied with the Washington Capitals Alex Ovechkin at 48 goals. Goalie Tuukka Rask had a 2.12 goals against average the Bruins finished ninth in the NHL with a 3.24 goals against average.

#3 How big is it for 38 year old New York Rangers goalie Hendrik Lundqvist to return back to camp after working out in Sweden

#4 The Rangers 37-25-5 during the regular season will be in the qualifiers and are the No.11 seed in the post season they’ll face off against No.6 Carolina Hurricanes 38-25-5 in the best of five series.

#5 The San Jose Sharks have $648,000 in cap space and with a frozen salary cap according to CBA guidelines with contracts expiring for Joe Thornton, Melker Karlsson, and Aaron Dell. Considering a $50,000 bump up it will put the cap at $750,000 for the next four years how difficult will it be to bring them back?

Matt Harrington does Headline podcasts each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com


Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington: Edmonton and Toronto gets the Stanley Cup Playoffs; All Canadian post season a great idea

Scotiabank Arena the home of the Toronto Maple Leafs has been named as one of the two Canadian cities to host the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs (sports.yahoo.com file photo)

On Headline Sports podcast with Matt:

#1 Matt the NHL is considering playing the Stanley Cup Playoffs in Canada away from a spiking US Coronavirus epidemic.

#2 Ten cities in the NHL were vying for a shot at being the hub to host the playoffs but the league after the last two weeks of Covid-19 spiking in the US places like  Chicago, Columbus, Dallas, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Minneapolis/St. Paul and Pittsburgh are losing ground as Canada is looking more viable for hosting post season.

#3 After Vancouver dropped out due to political recommendations to avoid Covid-19 inflating, Edmonton and Toronto are leading favorites to host the games.

#4 With Alberta’s success in maintaining social distancing, face masking, and sheltering  they are excited about being rewarded and prepared to host the Stanley Cup Playoffs as Edmonton has flattened the curve and are anxious for some post season hockey.

#5 How important is it for Toronto and Edmonton to host the Cup and how much of risk is it for these two hubs to host.

Matt does Headlines Sports each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com

Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington: How risky is it that NHL will not quarintine players?; Corona spiking in US as Vancouver drops out to be bubble city; plus more

AP file photo: Fans prepare for the Feb 15, 2020 Los Angeles Kings vs. Colorado Avalanche out door game at Falcon Stadium at Air Force Academy in Colorado

Matt Harrington podcast with Matt Harrington:

#1 Matt Carolinas Medical Center medical director of infection prevention Katie Passaretti said that NHL players who travel together and have been exposed to a number of people to individuals who were asymptotic as the NHL is not planning to quarantine players.

#2 Vancouver is out of the bubble running of the three Canadian cities vying for a shot to host the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Reports say that politicians in Vancouver are listening to local medical professionals who have leaned on the side of caution and said it would be best not to have people from all over who have been exposed especially after learning 11 players in the NHL have come up positive.

#3 That leaves Edmonton and Toronto left to be one of the hub cities but with the recent spike in the states could they back out too?

#4 The NHL Seattle francise team president Tom Leiweke announced that Key Arena that has been newly refurbished will now be called Climate Pledge Arena and will be the first carbon neutral arena in the NHL that will be powered by renewable energy instead of using natural gas.

#5 Matt how safe is it now that the NHL has got report of several players coming up positive for Corona but they will loosen up the rules allowing 12 players to workout up from six players?

Join Matt for Headline Sports each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com


Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington: Covid-19 cases spiking; NHL playoffs in doubt; Lighting have three players who tested positive

globalnews.com file photo: Rogers Arena in Edmonton which sits empty at the moment is vying for a chance to be one out of three Canadian cities to host the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

Matt on Headline Sports podcast:

#1 There are a number of NHL players hesitating regarding returning back especially with the huge spike in Covid-19 cases in Florida 3,000 a day and how returning will be handled.

#2 Previously Canadian players can’t leave the U.S. because if they go home there is a 14 day quarantine involved. Also Nashville Predators general manager David Poile said there a number of players who have showed up for practice but the NHL is not mandating players to show up as practice is voluntary.

#3 Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he would welcome the Stanley Cup Playoffs in the following Canadian hubs Edomonton, Vancouver and Toronto. Trudeau is set to waive the 14 quarantine and bubble the players in those venues for the players.

#4 Kaapo Kakko right winger of the New York Rangers had tested negative for Covid-19 and according to New York’s president John Davidson he’s been approved to play. Kakko has diabeties Davidson said he’s been tested and is ready to get in the line up.

#5 The Pittsburgh Penguins are 40-23-6 and are in the qualifiers with the Montreal Canadiens for the first round of the playoffs. They are said they most likely will start Matt Murray in goal. Murray is 20-11-5 with 2.87 goals against and an .899 save percentage.

Matt Harrington does Headlines podcasts each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com


Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington : CBJ’s coach Tortorella changes stance on taking a knee; Could Vancouver be a playoff hub?; plus more

Columbus Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella says he has a different view of players taking a knee previously he had a rule that any player sitting during the anthem will sit for the entire game (NESN file photo)

Headlines Sports podcast with Matt Harrington:

#1 Columbus Blue Jackets head coach John Tortorella has had a change of heart towards players taking a knee during the national anthem originally taking a knee would be out of the question and he would bench any player who sat during the national anthem after the murder of George Floyd and the protests Tortorella said he’s had a change of heart.

#2 The NHL Hockey Diversity Alliance headed up by the San Jose Sharks Evander Kane and Former Calgary Flame Akim Aliu took to social media and announced the Alliance wants diversity and an end to discrimination in hockey. Aliu had stated that he suffered many years of racial discrimination in the game of hockey. NHL vice president Kim Davis said that the NHL wants to work with the Alliance and wants action right away.

#3 Matt one of our favorite NHL cities Vancouver would like to be the hub city for the Stanley Cup Playoffs. British Columbia officials are trying to get the quarantine laws loosened so that Vancouver could serve as a representative city for post season.

#4 EA Sports has come out about having more diversity and getting on board with the Hockey Diversity Alliance but some players in the EA Sports Hockey League mode where players created dark skinned avatars that they gave the players derogatory racial names and insulting racial slogans.

#5 The Boston Bruins reported on Friday that they did have a player who tested false positive for Covid 19 but later took two tests and was asymptomatic and negative. All Bruins players who have returned in phase two have tested negative for the virus. Training camp opens July 10th.

Matt does Headline Sports each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com


Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington: NHL is set to drop the puck at training camp Monday; Preparing for NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs

photo from nhl.com: St Louis Blues head coach Chris Berube holds up the Stanley Cup after last season’s Stanley Cup Final. Berube says he and the team are anxious to get the post season going and hope to win their second consecutive championship

On Headline Sports podcast with Matt:

#1 The NHL says they’ve taken all the steps for phase two, all safety measures for enforcing mask wearing the all the practice and game rinks, social distancing, washing hands. The players and NHL seem to be in agreement on how safety measures will work.

#2 Teams reportedly will work out Monday and their will be only six players on the ice at anyone time. No coaches, trainers, officals will be permitted on the ice during practice sessions.

#3 The playoff format will be a best of seven series and as the Pittsburgh Penguins Kris Letang said everybody is used to the best of seven series format.

#4 The format will start with 16 teams an eight series qualifying round best of five, also there will a be a seeding round robin with four teams from each Western and Eastern conference.

#5 The St Louis Blues head coach Craig Berube said the Blues can’t wait to get into the playoffs. Berube says the team is hungry and they want to win a second consecutive Stanley Cup.

Matt does Headline Sports each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com


Headline Sports podcast with Matt Harrington: Bettman says NHL coming back for fans benefit; Draisaitl wins Art Ross Award; plus more

Edmonton Oilers center Leon Draisaitl (29),center, battles for the puck against San Jose Sharks right wing Joonas Donskoi in a 2018 playoff game. Draisaitl won the Art Ross Trophy as NHL points leader in the shortened season. (AP Photo/Tony Avelar)

On Headline Sports podcast with Matt:

#1 When NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman says money is not what’s driving the return to hockey is that something that’s believable?

#2 Bettman said that monetization is not driving the return but the league has heard from fans who would like to see a conclusion to the 2019-20 season.

#3 A Buffalo Sabers fan actually posted a Craigslist ad putting the Sabers up for sale after the team failed to make the NHL Stanley Cup expanded playoffs.  The fan who goes by the name of Dahlin Forever also made complaints about owners Terry and Kim Pegula and their brining back general manager Jason Boterill .

#4 The Edmonton Oilers Leon Draisaitl won the Art Ross Award and Alex Ovechkin 35, became the third player in NHL history to lead the league in goals at age 34 or older in goals.

#5 Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said she’s excited about the possibility of hosting the NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs saying,”I’m really enthusiastic about the possibility of getting hockey playoffs here in Chicago.” If that happens that will bring in badly needed income into Chicago after the Coronvirus shutdown that impacted the city’s economy.

Matt does Headline Sports each Saturday at http://www.sportsradioservice.com