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PHT Morning Skate: Reaction to Canucks’ changes; Giroux on Flyers’ slump

The struggling Canucks are cleaning house, firing GM Jim Benning, head coach Travis Green, an assistant GM and an assistant coach. Will bringing in Bruce Boudreau be enough for the struggling team?

Welcome to the PHT Morning Skate, a collection of links from the NHL and around the hockey world. Have a link you want to submit? Email us at phtblog@nbcsports.

• If you missed it, the Canucks canned both GM Jim Benning and head coach Travis Green late Sunday night. Bruce Boudreau will take over and Stan Smyl is now interim GM.

• "[W]hile Sunday’s changes reflect the end of a contentious era under Benning, they won’t immediately address the problem of the underachievement this season of Canuck players and, especially, the scoring crisis among struggling top forwards Elias Pettersson, Brock Boeser, Bo Horvat and, lately, J.T. Miller.” [Sportsnet]

• “Boudreau is known for being a more offensive-minded, with a willingness to unleash talented forwards to be creative, sometimes at the expense of the team’s defensive structure. Ovechkin thrived under Boudreau en route to a Presidents’ Trophy, although they had minimal playoff success together. With two of the Canucks young stars, Elias Pettersson and Brock Boeser, struggling to score, perhaps the thought is that Boudreau might be able to get more out of them than Green.” [Pass it to Bulis]

• Derek King and the play of Marc-Andre Fleury has helped spark a Blackhawks turnaround. [NBC Sports Chicago]

• Claude Giroux on the Flyers’ current extended losing streak: “Personally, I’ve been on a team here, we lost 10 in a row and made the playoffs. So I know it’s maybe weird to say, but we do have confidence in each other. We know we can be a dangerous team. We know we can win some hockey games. It’s just right now, we need to find our swagger.” [Inquirer]

• Sonny Milano, Mats Zuccarello, and Rickard Rakell are a couple of pickups who could help your fantasy hockey team this week. [NBC Sports Edge]

• Weeks after undergoing neck surgery Jack Eichel is skating and could join the Golden Knights by the end of the month. [Daily Faceoff]

• Craig Anderson’s injury status has changed to “month-to-month” as he deals with an upper-body ailment. [Buffalo Hockey Beat]

• Roope Hintz continues to deliver for the Stars. [D Magazine]

• While he’s still a ways away from returning, Nikita Kucherov hit the ice with his teammates on Saturday. []


Sean Leahy is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at or follow him on Twitter @Sean_Leahy.