Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Timonen Injured, Flyers Respond By Signing Del Zotto

Sad news was given today by the Philadelphia Flyers organization regarding Kimmo Timonen:
Flyers defenseman Kimmo Timonen has been diagnosed with blood clots in his lower right leg and in both lungs. Kimmo is currently being treated for this disorder back in his home country of Finland. His return to play is yet to be determined.
Timonen, who has been in Finland since June, was feeling pain in his right leg for about three days blamed it on a pulled muscle. A friend of Timonen, who happens to be a doctor, noticed that it was not a muscle problem and recommended that Kimmo immediately go to the hospital. Once there, his doctors found multiple blood clots, in his lungs and leg. The doctors, who are in contact with the Flyers medical team said that Timonen, who was admitted yesterday, is in stable condition and should be released tomorrow on Wednesday the 6th. Following his release, Kimmo will be immobilized and not allowed to travel for about 3 weeks. After that, he will return to his home in Haddonfield, NJ where the Flyers doctors will evaluate him.

This is not the first time Timonen has suffered from a blood clot. Back in 2008, right before the playoffs, Timonen was diagnosed with a blood clot in his lower right left (near his ankle). Timonen missed some time, but returned later in the playoffs. According to WebMD, once you've had a blood clot, you are more susceptible to another one. So Timonen's future is now in question. But that's the last of the concerns right now.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Kimmo Timonen and his family right now. 

In the meantime, new GM Ron Hextall is trying to figure out how to fill this massive hole left as Timonen was arguably the Flyers best defenseman. And Hextall responded immediately.

The Philadelphia Flyers have announced that they are signed defenseman Michael Del Zotto to a 1 year deal worth $1.3 million.

Del Zotto, 6'0" 193lbs, spent last year split between the New York Rangers and the Nashville Predators. In 5 seasons in the NHL, Del Zotto has played 327 games picking up 27 goals and 126 points.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Flyers Stay Quiet on Free Agency Day, Resign Emery

Free Agency officially began today at noon and the Philadelphia Flyers were noticeably quiet today. The reason for that is the salary cap, which was raised to $69 million for next season. However, the Flyers already have $70+ million committed to 20 players, meaning they are $1.2 million over the cap already and 4 spots still to be filled (as Chris Pronger will be put on the Long Term Injured Reserve when the season begins).

Flyers resign Ray Emery
But the Flyers did get themselves a backup goalie. Philadelphia officially resigned G Ray Emery to a 1 year deal worth $1 million. Emery played 28 games with the Flyers last season accumulating a .903 save percentage and allowed 2.96 GAA.

Philadelphia also signed G Rob Zepp, who played for the Berlin Eisbaren over the last 7 seasons. Last year Zepp picked up 5 shutouts with a 2.74 GAA and .921 save percentage. Zepp along with Flyers prospect G Anthony Stolarz will be in net for the Lehigh Phantoms next season.

The Flyers just signed forward Blair Jones to a two-way contract. Jones, 27, has played 128 games in the NHL with the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Calgary Flames scoring 7 goals and 17 points.


Saturday, June 28, 2014

Flyers Select Travis Sanheim with the 17th Overall

The Philadelphia Flyers, who hosted this year's draft for the first time in their history, selected WHL defenseman, Travis Sanheim with their 17th overall pick in the 1st round tonight.

Flyer select Travis Sanheim

The Flyers went off the board a little with this pick as Sanheim was ranked 24th by TSN scouting and 53rd by the NHL Central Scouting (CS). Sanheim has been a very quick riser though. His midseason ranking by NHL CS was 167th; however, by the end of the season, draft expert and former GM Craig Button ranked Sanheim 8th in his list.

Travis Sanheim
According to TSN scouting report:
Progress has been exceptional. Nothing he can't do in the game. Skates, thinks incredibly well, has poise, makes plays offensively and defensively and is a player who recognizes opportunity in the game and takes advantage.
And according to Flyers analyst Bill Meltzer, Sanheim has the all important four S's (size, speed, skill and hockey sense):
The speed is already there. The size should be as he fills out his still lanky 6-foot-3 frame. The hockey sense appears to be above-average. The skill level is the area that opened eyes in the second half of this past season as he gained confidence, but he has the tools to be a two-way defenseman.
Draft Day 2:
Round 2, Pick 48: Nicolas Aube-Kubel (Defenseman; WHL)
Round 3, Pick 86: Mark Friedman (Center; QMJHL)
Round 5, Pick 148: Oskar Lindblom (Defenseman; USHL)
Round 6, Pick 168: Radel Fazleev (Forward; WHL)
Round 7, Pick 198:  Jesper Pettersson (Defenseman; Swedish Hockey League)

Monday, June 23, 2014

Flyers Extend Schenn

Brayden Schenn signs extension
The Philadelphia Flyers signed Brayden Schenn to a 2 year contract extension today worth $5 million.

Schenn will make $2.25 in his first year and $2.75 in his second. Therefore, Schenn's new cap hit will be $2.5 million.

Schenn had played 3 seasons with the Flyers registering 40 goals and 85 points in 183 games. 

Flyers Trade Hartnell for Umberger

The Philadelphia Flyers announced today that they have traded forward Scott Hartnell to the Columbus Blue Jackets for RJ Umberger and a 4th round pick in the 2015 NHL draft.

This becomes new GM Ron Hextall's first trade. The trade, however, does not make any sense.

Maybe they traded Hartnell, 32, for a younger player? Umberger is 32.

Maybe they traded him to get more production? Over the last 3 seasons, Hartnell has scored 65 goals and 131 points, while Umberger has 46 goals and 92 points. Plus Umberger was a healthy scratch for a couple of Columbus' playoff games, when they needed him the most.

Maybe they traded him to shed Hartnell's large salary ($4.75 million) off the cap? Umberger's cap hit is $4.6 million. Also the Blue Jackets had internal talks about possibly buying out Umberger's large contract.

Maybe he fit better positionally? Umberger is a natural center. The Flyers already have way too many centers (Giroux, Lecavalier, Couturier, Schenn).

Maybe they packaged him for more? The only other part of this trade was a 4th round pick, which is hardly worth the difference.

So what else is left?
Scott Hartnell had a full 'No Movement Clause' in his contract. This means he cannot be traded without his consent and to a team of his choice. So did Hartnell want out of Philadelphia? And if so, why; and why Columbus? If this is the case, then a lot of pressure would have been put on Hextall. At this point only Hartnell and Hextall know these answers. Hopefully soon, we will too, because this trade is atrocious.

Scott Hartnell spoke to the media moments ago and stated that he did not ask to be traded. He was approached by me GM Ron Hextall about 5 days ago and told a trade was in development, because 'his time was up in Philadelphia.' So an upset Hartnell agreed to waive him 'No Movement Clause' because he no longer wanted to be on a team that did not want him. 

Friday, June 13, 2014

Flyers Extend Timonen

The Philadelphia Flyers retained Kimmo Timonen's services for the 2014-2015 season. Timonen decided he wanted to play for at least one more year before retiring.

After the 2014 season came to a close, Timonen took some time to consider whether or not he wanted to retire or play another season with Philadelphia. After 44 days, Timonen finally made the decision to play another season.

Newly appointed GM Ron Hextall sat down with Timonen and came up with a very cap friendly deal. Philadelphia officially signed Kimmo Timonen to a 1 year deal worth $2 million in base salary, plus an additional $2 million in performance bonuses. Therefore, Timonen's cap hit for the upcoming season will be just $2 million, down from his $6 million last season. And if he obtains his bonuses, then they will be added on to next season's cap.

This will be Timonen's 8th season with the Flyers and 16th in the NHL. In those 8 season with Philadelphia, Timonen has played 596 games recording 38 goals and 305 points.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Flyers Promote Hextall to GM

Today the Philadelphia Flyers announced that they have promoted both Paul Holmgren and Ron Hextall. Paul Holmgren, who spent the last 8 years as the Flyers General Manager, will now be the President of Hockey operations. Ron Hextall, the Flyers Assistant GM last season, has now been promoted to the position of General Manager.

Holmgren, according to the Flyers website, will oversee both the business and hockey operations of the Flyers and will report directly to Flyers Chairman Ed Snider.

Hextall will become responsible for the day-to-day management of the Flyers’ hockey operations and will report to Holmgren.

Hextall spent the 2013-14 season as the Flyers Assistant GM, and the previous 7 with the LA Kings Vice President and Assistant General Manager, where he won the Stanley Cup with them in 2012.

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Rangers Win Game 7 End Flyers Season

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the New York Rangers 2-1 in Game 7 tonight officially ending their season.

The Rangers dominated the 2nd period tonight out shooting the Flyers 18-5 while out scoring them 2-0. And that became the difference in the game, and ultimately, the series. 

After an evenly played and scoreless 1st period, the Rangers got the all important first goal of the game, early in the 2nd.

Mats Zuccarello found Daniel Carcillo in front for his second of the series against his former team. 

Benoit Pouliot increased New York's lead to 2, when he buried the puck after receiving a nice east to west pass from Derick Brassard. 

Philadelphia finally turned their game around in the 3rd period giving it everything they had to save their season. Jason Akeson finally got the Flyers on the board cutting the Rangers lead to 1. 

The Flyers out shot the Rangers 11-5 in the final period, but they could not find the equalizer. 

Steve Mason, who played a terrific season earning himself a new contract, was exceptional tonight. Mason made 31 saves on 33 attempts keeping his team alive, while giving them a valid chance to comeback. 

But it was not to be. The Rangers victory in Game 7 gives them a 4-3 series win. New York moves on to face the Pittsburgh Penguins in the second round of the NHL playoffs, while the Flyers are eliminated.

Game Notes:
  • Claude Giroux finished the playoffs leading the Flyers with 6 points in 7 games. 
  • It was finally revealed that Steve Mason did not start the series due to a concussion. 
  • The Flyers went 0 for 2 on their PowerPlay and 1 for 1 on the penalty kill. 
  • Braydon Coburn and Matt Read got the assists on Akeson's lone Flyers goal. 
  • Giroux led all Flyers in ice time with 23:16 minutes. 
  • Scott Hartnell led all players with 6 shots. 
Drop The Puck:
See you in October! 

Simmonds Nets Hat Trick as Flyers Force Game 7

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the New York Rangers 5-2 tonight.

The Flyers victory in Game 6 tonight ties the series at 3 games apiece forcing this one to go all the way to 7 games. 

Philadelphia was led by the terrific effort of both Steve Mason and Wayne Simmonds. Simmonds had the best game of any player this series, notching a hat trick for the Orange and Black, while Mason stood on his head making 34 saves on 36 shots. 

Something was noticeably missing when the Flyers played Game 5 on Sunday: passion. Philadelphia wasn't finishing their checks, they weren't executing, and they just simply lacked emotion. That would have to change if they wanted to live to fight another day. So the Flyers came out fighting for their lives tonight and ultimately played their best game of the series.

Wayne Simmonds got the Flyers rolling with his first goal of the game 7:08 into the period while on the PowerPlay. Simmonds found Scott Hartnell's rebound and and wouldn't let up until the puck was in the back of the net. 

Special teams proved to be a huge part of tonight's hockey game. The Flyers went 2 for 3 while killing a perfect 5 for 5. 

Steve Mason kept the Flyers alive in the opening period stopping all 13 shots, keeping the Flyers 1 goal lead intact. 

The 2nd period started and it was Simmonds again. The Wayne-Train struck again just 1:32 into the period giving the Flyers their first multigoal lead since Game 2.

One of the few changes to the Flyers lineup tonight was the addition of defenseman Erik Gustafsson. Nicklas Grossmann, who had surgery to repair a damaged tendon in his ankle today, is now out for 8-10 weeks. Grossmann was replaced by Hal Gill in Game 5, yet was a minus 2. Therefore coach Craig Berube decided to sit Gill and start Gustafsson. 

And that decision payed off in the 2nd period. Immediately after his high sticking penalty, Gustafsson exited the box and found himself with the puck on a breakaway. Gustafsson made no mistake and beat Henrik Lundqvist through the 5-hole, putting the Flyers up 3-0. 

Just 62 seconds later, Wayne Simmonds completed his hat trick adding a second PowerPlay goal for the Flyers. Jake Voracek fed Simmonds in front who redirected it into the cage for his first career NHL playoff hat trick. And the Flyers led 4-0 after 2 periods holding the largest lead of this series. 

After surrendering 4 goals in 23 shots, Lundqvist's night was over. He was pulled for the first time this series as Cam Talbot replaced him. 

Carl Hagelin finally broke Mason's shutout bid with just 6:34 remaining. But it was the captain who put the final stamp on. Claude Giroux put the puck into the back of the empty net sealing the win for the Flyers. 

Mats Zuccarello, however, scored a meaningless goal for the Rangers in the final minute, finalizing the score at 5-2. 

The Flyers home victory forces a Game 7 which will be played tomorrow (Wednesday) night. The winner of the game and series will move on to face the Pittsburgh Penguins. 

Game Notes:
  • The 5 goals scored by the Flyers was the most by either team in this series. 
  • The last playoff hat trick allowed by the Rangers was in 2006. 
  • Claude Giroux scored a goal picked up 2 assists took 3 shots and 3 hits in 16:19 minutes. 
  • Erik Gustafsson scored a goal, took 3 shots and was plus 1 in 18:19 minutes in his first playoff game this season. 
  • Simmonds scored 3 goals, took a team high 6 shots, 12 penalty minutes, and 3 hits in 12:50 minutes tonight. 
  • After Wayne Simmonds' hat trick, the Flyers faithful threw a whopping 640 hats onto the ice (stat courtesy of CSNPhilly). 
  • All but 3 Flyers picked up at least 1 hit tonight. 
  • Luke Schenn led the way with 5 hits. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will look to carry their momentum into the do-or-die Game 7 Wednesday night.

*I would like to give a whole hearted thank you to everyone who helped get me to this game tonight! (You know who you are!) For some more shots of tonight's game: CLICK HERE

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Rangers Take Game 5 at Home

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the New York Rangers 4-2 today.

The Rangers victory gives them a 3-2 series lead with the chance to wrap things up in Game 6 on Tuesday night. 

Philadelphia struggled through most of the game today, especially on the PowerPlay. The Flyers were awarded with 5 PowerPlays in the first 2 periods. The first 4 saw very little time in the offensive zone and with every bad PowerPlay, momentum was shifted back in the Rangers favor. The Flyers did finally score on their fifth and final PowerPlay; however, at this point in the game it was already a 3-0 game. 

The Flyers also noticeably lack passion. They didn't come out of the gates with intensity, didn't hit as hard, battles in the corners were constantly won by the Rangers and emotions were low as their were barely any scrums at all. 

This all led to sloppy plays and turnovers, which New York took advantage of. Marc Staal opened the scoring for the Rangers, who have scored the first goal in all but one game in the series. Staal joined the rush catching the Flyers flatfooted and beat Steve Mason, giving the Rangers a 1-0 lead after the 1st period came to an end. 

The 2nd period was more of the same. New York was on another odd man rush, one of many today, they ultimately missed the net with the shot attempt; however, the Rangers never gave up on the play. They retrieved the puck, threw it on goal, got the rebound and then scored the goal, courtesy of Brad Richards. In this one play: the Flyers were caught up ice leading to an odd man rush, failed to retrieve the puck behind the net, lost a battle in front, failed to clear the rebound and the Ranger players in front of Mason. The play was a microcosm of how the whole game was played.

With under 4 minutes to play in the middle stanza, another sloppy play led to a 3 goal lead. Braydon Coburn carelessly played the puck into Hal Gill's feet causing a turnover to Dominic Moore as he went in alone on Mason. Moore's second goal of the series all but wrapped things up. 

Philadelphia finally broke through on a late PowerPlay in the 2nd when Vinny Lecavalier's shot hit something in front beating Henrik Lundqvist. 

New York played a very solid 3rd period, shutting down the Flyers throughout most of it. The Rangers kept the Flyers to just 7 shots prior to them pulling their goalie in the end. 

After Mason was pulled, the Flyers cut the lead to 1 with 1:29 remaining. Claude Giroux finally notched his first goal of the season, giving the Flyers, who were on cardiac arrest, a heartbeat. 

That, however, would be as close as they would get. Brian Boyle completed the victory with his empty net goal, giving the Rangers a 4-2 win and a chance to close out the series in Philadelphia. 

Game Notes:
  • Nicklas Grossmann, who left Game 4 with a lower body injury, did not suit up today. 
  • Hal Gill replaced Grossmann. Gill was a -2, with 1 shot in 12:02 minutes. 
  • Lecavalier's PowerPlay goal was his first of the series. Jake Voracek is still the only Flyer with more than one goal. He has 2. 
  • Steve Mason made 18 saves on 21 attempts. 
  • Claude Giroux finally scored his first goal of the series today. He also took a game high 6 shots, although he was -1. 
  • The Flyers went 1 for 5 on the PowerPlay and 3 for 3 on the penalty kill. 
  • For the 3rd time this series, Ryan McDonagh logged over 27 minutes of ice time (27:52 today). Andy MacDonald led the Flyers in that category with 24:23 minutes. 
Drop the Puck:
The Flyers will look to force a Game 7, when they host the Rangers for Game 6 on Tuesday night. 

Friday, April 25, 2014

Mason Helps Flyers Even Series

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the New York Rangers 2-1 in Game 4 of the first round of the NHL playoffs tonight. 

Philadelphia's victory evens the series at 2 games apiece as they shift back to New York for Game 5. 

Steve Mason was the story of tonight's game stopping 37 shots on 38 attempts. Mason, who missed 3 games due to an upper body injury, got his first start of the 2014 playoffs. And Mason didn't miss a beat. 5 years ago, the last time Mason made the playoffs, his Blue Jackets were swept; tonight, however, would be a different story for the netminder. Mason made one big save after another including all 10 of 10 shots faced in the 3rd period earning his first ever playoff win. 

New York got off to a great start tonight picking up the game's first goal just 4:38 minutes in. Dominic Moore popped right out of the penalty box found the puck and raced down the ice. Moore's initial shot hit Mason in the mask then landed right back on Moore's stick, who wrapped the puck around the net beating Mason, giving the Rangers a 1-0 lead. 

Just over 4 minutes later, Matt Read lit the lamp for the first time in the series. Jason Akeson's shot deflected off the boards behind the net then back out right onto Read's stick, who made no mistake and beat Henrik Lundqvist knotting the game at 1.  

The Rangers outshot the Flyers 16-6 in the opening period, but Philadelphia still managed to to keep it tied, thanks to the efforts of Mason. 

Jake Voracek, arguably the Flyers best player in this series, put them in the driver's seat while on the PowerPlay. Brayden Schenn made a nice feed to Voracek in front, who redirected it past Lundqvist giving the Flyers their first lead of the game. 

Voracek's goal ultimately turned into the game winner as Steve Mason and the Flyers defense shut down the Rangers earning them their second win of the series. 

The Flyers did so with just 5 defenseman. Nicklas Grossmann was tripped awkwardly into the boards and was forced to leave the game in the 2nd period with what is being called a lower body injury. 

The Flyers and Rangers will continue their battle on Sunday for Game 5. 

Game Notes:
  • The win is the Flyers first home victory of the 2014 playoffs. 
  • Philadelphia went a perfect 4 for 4 on the penalty kill and 1 for 2 on the PowerPlay. 
  • Voracek's goal was his second of the playoffs; he is currently the only Flyer to register more than 1 goal in the series. 
  • Voracek also leads the Flyers with 3 points in 4 games. 
  • Not one Flyer took more than 3 shots tonight; 3 Rangers registered 5 shots or more. 
  • Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh led all players with an incredible 28:02 minutes. Braydon Coburn led all Flyers with 25:27. 
Drop The Puck:
Game 5 of the series is scheduled to be played in New York at noon on Sunday. 

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Rangers Regain Series Lead

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the New York Rangers 4-1 in Game 3 of the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs tonight. 

The New York Rangers were the more opportunistic team tonight scoring 4 goals on 23 shots. While on the other side of the ice they blocked shot after shot. Philadelphia played a pretty solid game this evening, despite the final score. The Flyers attempted 78 shots tonight; however, only 32 made it to Henrik Lundqvist as the Rangers blocked an incredible 28 shots. 

Ray Emery started once again, but Steve Mason was on the bench today, serving as a backup after missing 3 games with an upper body injury. Emery got off to a rough start fumbling his 2nd shot faced, which resulted in Derek Stepan scoring on the Rangers 3rd shot on goal just 3:54 minutes to start the game. 

For the seconds consecutive game, the Rangers then took a 2-0 lead around the midway point of the period. Marty St. Louis deflected Dan Girardi's shot giving the Rangers 2 goals on 6 shots. 

The Flyers finally found life late in the 1st period, similarly to Game 2. Jake Voracek found Mark Streit on the rush and the Flyers were within 1. 

Philadelphia carried their strong play into the 2nd period outshooting New York 5-1 in the first 5 minutes; however, the Rangers quickly thwarted their momentum when Girardi's blast from the point found its way to the back of the net restoring the 2 goal lead. 

After the goal, it was the shot blocking and goaltending show that took place for the Rangers. New York blocked more shots in both the 2nd and 3rd periods then they allowed shots on goal; the Flyers took 13 shots in the 2nd and had 14 blocked, then took 7 shots in the 3rd while having 8 shots blocked.

Dan Carcillo added the Rangers 4th goal crushing all hope for the Flyers essentially ending this game, with 9:07 remaining.

Lundqvist was solid as well stopping all 20 shots faced in the final 2 periods and 31 saves on 32 total attempts, helping secure the 2-1 series lead for his New York Rangers.

Game Notes:
  • Claude Giroux, on his 81st shift of the series, finally registered his first shot of the series. He ended up with 2 on the game. 
  • Luke Schenn led all Flyers in shots with 5. 
  • Rangers defensemen Dan Girardi and Kevin Klein combined for 9 blocked shots. 
  • Both the Flyers and Rangers went scoreless on their PowerPlays going 0-5 and 0-4, respectively. 
  • 15 of the 18 Rangers skaters blocked at least 1 shot tonight. 
  • Steve Mason saw his first playoff action of the series when Ray Emery was pulled after the 4th goal. Mason made 3 saves on 3 shots. He will start Game 4 on Friday. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will try to even the series at 2 in Philadelphia when Game 4 is played Friday night. 

Monday, April 21, 2014

Flyers Comeback to Even Series

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the New York Rangers 4-2 in Game 2 of the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs today. 

The Flyers finally won in New York after 9 straight defeats, and it couldn't have come at a better time. The Flyers win ties the series up at 1 game apiece as they shift to Philadelphia for the next 2 contests. 

The win was a very familiar one for the Orange and Black as they were forced to come from behind once again. New York picked up right were they left off in Game 1 scoring 2 quick goals to start the game. The Rangers tallied 2 goals separated by just 4:14 minutes in the first 8:22 of play. 

Marty St. Louis scored on a nice east to west play, and then Benoit Pouliot struck on the PowerPlay giving the Rangers a 2-0 lead. 

Instead of panicking and falling into the Rangers system, the Flyers stayed calm and stayed true to their game plan. Jake Voracek had a lot to do with that. Voracek noticeably was settling down his teammates on the bench helping them stay focused. And like a true leader, he not only talked the talk but he walked the walk. Voracek cut the Rangers lead in half on a terrific individual effort that saw him skate around the defenseman and then beat Henrik Lundqvist one on one. 

Not only did Voracek's goal cut the lead in half, but it sparked the Flyers and set the tone for the next period. And in the 2nd period, Philadelphia picked up the tying and then go ahead goal. 

Jason Akeson, the goat from Game 1 due to his double minor which resulted with 2 goals being scored by the Rangers, made up for that in the very next game. Akeson, who was only playing in his fourth NHL game and second playoff game, scored the tying goal  for the Flyers when he found Vinny Lecavalier's rebound while on the PowerPlay. 

Later in the period, while on a delayed penalty, the Flyers skated into the zone. Luke Schenn, who's known for his defensive play intelligently joined the rush as their was no downside since it was a delayed penalty. Adam Hall put the puck on goal and Schenn found the rebound while crashing the net and buried it for his first ever playoff tally giving the Flyers their first lead of the game. 

Philadelphia hung onto that lead into the 3rd period where it became the Ray Emery show. Emery played a terrific game stopping 31 shots on 33 attempts including all 7 in the 3rd period. 

Wayne Simmonds scored an empty net goal capping off Philadelphia's first win in New York since February of 2011; yet more importantly, their first win of the series. 

Game Notes:
  • The flyers finished the game 2 for 3 on the PowerPlay and 5 for 6 on the penalty kill. 
  • Claude Giroux, who is still looking for his first shot of the series, registered his first point with an assist on Voracek's goal. 
  • Ray Emery got his second consecutive start for the first time all season. 
  • Braydon Coburn led the Flyers in shots (5), blocked shots (4), and ice time 21:58 minutes. 
  • The Rangers outshot the Flyers 33-25. 
Drop The Puck:
The divisional series shifts to Philadelphia for Game 3 on Tuesday night.  

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Game 1 Goes to the Rangers

The Philadelphia Flyers lost Game 1 of the first round of the playoffs to the New York Rangers 4-1 tonight. 

The Rangers were the better team all night as they had their way with the Flyers throughout most of this hockey game. The Rangers heavily outshot the Flyers 36-15 tonight. New York played their tight defensive styled game and Philadelphia couldn't find any space neither in the neutral nor the offensive zone. 

Philadelphia could only muster 14 shots in the first 2 periods to the Rangers 23.  Despite this, they were still able to start the final period knotted at 1, on 1st period goals from Andrew MacDonald for the Flyers and Mats Zuccarello for the Rangers. 

However, the Flyers completely unravelled in the 3rd period. And it all started with one bad penalty which ultimately cost them the game. Jason Akeson, who was only playing in his third NHL game and first ever playoff game, took a 4 minute high sticking penalty. The Rangers scored twice on the ensuing PowerPlays on goals from Brad Richards and Derek Stepan giving the Rangers a commanding 3-1 lead halfway through the period. 

After the 2 goals, which were separated by just 47 seconds, the Flyers were dead in the water. The Rangers outshot them 10-0 following the goals and 13-1 for the entire period. 

Carl Hagelin added one more goal for the Rangers clinching Game 1 for New York. 

Philadelphia's struggles in New York continue. They now fall to 0-9 in games played in New York since 2011. In fact the struggles aren't just in New York though. The Flyers are just 4-14 in the 18 games versus the Rangers. If the Flyers can't make adjustments and figure out how to successfully navigate the neutral zone against this stingy Rangers team, it will be very short series. 

But the Flyers have been adjusting and overcoming the odds all season, so they are just going to have to do it again. 

Game Notes:
  • Scott Hartnell made a fantastic play in the first period as he sent Ryan McDonagh into the boards and stole the puck. He then made a great pass to Andy MacDonald who blasted a shot past Henrik Lundqvist. This is how the Flyers need to play to beat the Rangers; however, they failed to keep up this style of play and therefore succumb to New York again. 
  • The Claude Giroux, Jake Voracek and Scott Hartnell line combined for 2 shots, both coming from Hartnell. 
  • Ray Emery started in goal for the Flyers for the injured Steve Mason. 
  • Emery made 32 saves on 36 shots. 
  • The Flyers only got 1 PowerPlay all game and failed to score on it. 
  • The Rangers went 2 for 6 on their man advantages. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers and Rangers will play Game 2 in New York on Easter Sunday at noon. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Flyers Loss Final Regular Season To Hurricanes in Shootout

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the Carolina Hurricanes 6-5 this afternoon.

After yesterday's win against the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Flyers clinched 3rd place in the Metro division; therefore, this game was essentially meaningless.  

So Philadelphia called up rookie goalie Cal Heeter and forward Jason Akeson and did not dress Steve Mason, Michael Raffl, Nicklas Grossmann and Andy MacDonald. 

Heeter struggled early as he allowed 4 goals on his first 14 shots. Jeff Skinner, Eric Staal, who scored twice, and Manny Malholtra all took advantage of this fact giving the Hurricanes a 4-1 lead early in the 2nd. Matt Read scored the lone goal for the Flyers during that span. 

Just when it appeared that the Flyers had given up, they struck. Not once, not twice but thrice. Kimmo Timonen, Wayne Simmonds and Sean Couturier scored goals separated by just 3:32 minutes tying this game at 4. 

In the 3rd period, Scott Hartnell received a 5 minute major for spearing and was ejected from the game. Carolina regained the lead on the ensuing PowerPlay on Skinner's second of the game. 

All season long the Flyers have been making miraculous comebacks, so why not one last time. With 9.5 seconds remaining and the goalie pulled Wayne Simmonds did just that. Simmonds' career high 29th goal sent this game into overtime. 

After the 5 minute overtime session the skills competition was needed. Eric Staal and Jeff Skinner both scored while Jason Akeson, Claude Giroux, and Sean Couturier all failed to. 

The Flyers close out the season with a 42-30-10 record for 93 points. 

Game Notes:

Season Career Highs: 
  • Jake Voracek: 23 goals, 39 assists and 62 points. 
  • Wayne Simmonds: 29 goals, 31 assists and 60 points.
  • Brayden Schenn: 20 goals, 21 assists and 41 points. 
  • Scott Hartnell: 32 assists
  • Claude Giroux: 7 game winning goals 
  • Matt Read: 4 shorthanded goals
  • Sean Couturier: 26 assists and 39 points. 
  • Steve Mason: .917 save percentage
Team Awards: 
  • Barry Ashbee Trophy for Top Defenseman: Kimmo Timonen
  • Yanick Dupre Trophy for Class Act: Jake Voracek
  • Pelle Lindbergh Award for Most Improved: Michael Raffl
  • Gene Hart Memorial Award for Player with Most Heart: Steve Mason
  • Bobby Clarke Trophy for Team MVP: Claude Giroux
  • The Flyers set their franchise record for most players who played in all 82 games this season with 7: Claude Giroux, Jake Voracek, Mark Streit, Wayne Simmonds, Sean Couturier, Brayden Schenn and Braydon Coburn. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will start the playoffs in New York on Thursday against the Rangers. 

Union Strikes In Philadelphia

The Union Dutchmen have defeated the Minnesota Golden Gophers 7-4 for the NCAA Frozen Four National Championship. 

Union, a school of only 2200 students, did what they have never done in school history by capturing the NCAA title tonight. It was the Dutchmen's first ever trip to the championship game as well. 

Philadelphia Flyers 2012 3rd round draft pick, Shayne Gostisbehere, Union's only NHL drafted player, had his way against the Gophers, who have 14 drafted players. Gostisbehere, who was named MVP of the game, did it all on both sides of the ice; he scored a goal, had 2 assists, took 5 shots and was an incredible +7 tonight. 

The Dutchmen got off to a slow start and fell down by 1 less than 4 minutes in on a goal from Minnesota's Justin Kloos. 

Gostisbehere then started heating up. The Ghost tied the game up for Union carrying the puck through 4 Gophers and beat Adam Wilcox with a beautiful wrist shot. 

Just 37 seconds later, Minnesota regained the lead on a tough angle shot from Sam Warning. But the rest of the period would belong to Union. The Dutchmen went on to score 3 goals in 1:54 minutes on tallies from Mike Vecchione, Eli Lichtenwald, and Daniel Ciampini to take a 4-2 into the 2nd. 

After a 6 goal 1st period, the 2nd was a little more tamed. Taylor Cammarata got one back for Minnesota in the 2nd, but Union would still hang on to their lead by the period's end. 

Minnesota came into tonight's game having given up the second fewest goals per game in the NCAA with just 1.95. The 7 goals against today was the most Minnesota has allowed all season. This was nothing new for Union, they scored the second most goals per game in NCAA with 3.7, including 5 or more goals in 5 of their last 6 games. 

And they just kept scoring. Union picked up 3 more goals in the 3rd period. Max Novak got an early goal giving the Dutchmen not only their 2 goal lead back but their confidence as well. At one point, Union was out shooting the Gophers 11-3 in the period. 

Hudson Fasching, Buffalo Sabres prospect, gave Minnesota life again late in the 3rd with his goal, yet it was Union who responded again. The anchors of this team, Mat Bodie and Shayne Gostisbehere, fittingly both assisted Kevin Sullivan's insurance goal with just 1:22 minutes left on the clock, which all but sealed the victory. 

Finally, senior and captain Mat Bodie, who was playing in his last collegiate hockey game, buried the empty netter clinching Union's first ever National Champioship. 

Union head coach Rick Bennett, who deservedly was named coach of the year, saw his team go a league best 32-6-4 this season including a perfect 8-0 in the playoffs. Bennett's playoff record is now a very impressive 19-2 with a Union team who had never made the NCAA tournament before his tenure. Now they have won the ECAC championship 3 years in a row, have qualified for the NCAA tournament 3 consecutive years, have 2 Frozen Four appearances, and now a National Championship Title. 

Congratulations Union Dutchmen for a terrific season and a wonderful win tonight. You are the Champions!

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Flyers Beat Penguins in OT, Clinch 3rd Place

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3 in overtime today.

Mark Streit was the hero for the Flyers this afternoon as his shot snuck through the legs of Penguins goalie Marc Andre Fleury in the extra session. Streit's goal helps the Flyers clinch the number 3 seed in the division; therefore, they will face the New York Rangers in the first round of the playoffs. 

As expected both the Flyers and the Penguins put on a show which included a lot if grit, toughness, hits and goals. 

Jussi Jokinen got the Penguins on the board early in the 1st, but Jake Voracek responded for the Flyers. Voracek scored on the PowerPlay at the end of the period, then again in the 2nd to give the Flyers a 2-1 lead, which they carried into the final period. 

After 15 minutes of scoreless 3rd period hockey, the goals started pouring in. James Neal tied the game at 2 with under 5 to play. Then Claude Giroux broke the tie with just 75 seconds later with his 28th goal of the season. 

With the net empty, the Penguins found the equalizer once again. Kris Letang, who missed several games due to a stroke he had earlier in the season, buried a loose puck in front sending the game to overtime. 

And in that overtime, it was Mark Streit, who scored his 10th goal of the season while on a 2 on 2 rush with Brayden Schenn. 

The victory came with a huge cost. Steve Mason, who started and played excellent making 21 saves on 22 shots left the game in between the 2nd and 3rd period. Late in the 2nd period, Flyers defenseman Andrew MacDonald was pushed into Mason which resulted in a violent collision. Mason was shaken up but finished the period. Ray Emery replaced him to start the 3rd. The Flyers organization is only saying he is out with an upper body injury. 

Game Notes:
  • Both Kimmo Timonen and Nicklas Grossmann sat out today. 
  • They were replaced by Erik Gustafsson and Hal Gill. 
  • Gill played in his first game since December 21st. 
  • The Flyers went 1 for 2 on their PowerPlay and 4 for 4 on the penalty kill.  
  • Jake Voracek registered 2 goals, an assist and took 7 shots on goal. 
  • Giroux's 28th goal of the season matches his career high. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers play their final game of the regular season against the Carolina Hurricanes tomorrow afternoon. 

Friday, April 11, 2014

The Frozen Four Takes Center Stage In Philadelphia

Frozen Four in Philadelphia for the 1st time
The 2014 Frozen Four is finally here! And this year Philadelphia is the host city of the storied college hockey tournament, which got underway this afternoon. 

The NCAA College hockey tournament has taken place every year since 1948 and in 1999, the term Frozen Four was officially used for the name of the tournament's final four. 

After the first 2 rounds were completed last week, 16 teams were narrowed down to 4.  Minnesota, North Dakota, Union and Boston College all advanced to the Frozen Four. 

In the first game, both number 1 seeds in there respective region, Boston College and Union, faced off against each other. 

Union faces off against BC
Coming into the game, Boston was the highest scoring team in the nation averaging 4.06 goals per game; however, Union was second averaging 3.67. So a high scoring game was expected, and they did not disappoint. 

Both teams came into tonight's game having Philadelphia connections. Boston College star Johnny Gaudreau, who is the favorite to win the Hobey Baker Award (which goes to the best college hockey player), is from the greater Philadelphia area. Gaudreau, who was drafted by the Calgary Flames, was born and raised in Carney's Point, New Jersey. 

On the other side, Union is led by budding star defenseman Shayne Gostisbehere. Gostisbehere, who was also nominated for the Hobey Baker, was drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers in the 3rd round of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Both made their presence known on the biggest stage today.   

Gaudreau was the first to strike as he put BC up 1-0 early in the 1st period. 

Union wins 5-4, shakes hands with BC
After Union captain Mat Bodie tied the game in the 2nd, it was Gostisbehere's turn. The man they call The Ghost, took a shot from the point which led to a huge rebound and Daniel Ciampini scored his first of the game giving Union their first lead, 2-1. Ciampini had a career day today as he registered his first career hat trick.

Steve Santini knotted this game up again  for BC as the teams went to the second intermission. 

Union was given a PowerPlay early in the 3rd and Shayne Gostisbehere did it again. Gostisbehere blasted his patented shot from the point and Ciampini deflected it in. 

The turning point in the game happened just seconds after Ciampini's second tally. Union's Matt Hatch was given a 5 minute match penalty and a game misconduct for a hit from behind, giving BC a long PowerPlay and a prime opportunity to tie and possibly regain the lead. 

Gostisbehere shakes hands with Gaudreau
Instead, Union shined and excelled on the penalty kill skating away unscathed. And just seconds after killing all 5 minutes, Union cashed in when Mike Vecchione scored as a result of a Kevin Sullivan breakaway. 

BC did not go down quietly though. The Eagles cut the lead to 1 courtesy of Ryan Fitzgerald; however, the Dutchmen buried the empty net goal as Ciampini completed his hat trick. 

BC added another goal with 3.9 seconds remaining from captain Patrick Brown, yet it would not be enough as Union won 5-4. 

Union advances to their first Frozen Four Championship ever. 

Union salutes to the fans after the game
"It's a great feeling but the jobs not done," Gostisbehere told ESPN after the game. "We went down one goal in the first period, but again it just shows the character of our team and the determination we have to win a national title." 

In an interview after the game, Gaudreau was asked whether or not he will go pro in which he responded, "I have to figure it out here, the next day, or tonight. Thankfully I'm here with my family and I'll be able to talk to all my family members and see what's best for me and my career. So we'll probably figure that out pretty soon."

Union sat back and watched to see who they would be playing as Minnesota and North Dakota kicked off their game an hour later. 

Minnesota celebrates after their goal w/ .6 seconds left
Both the Gophers and the Sioux played very tight and even hockey as they remained scoreless after 2 periods. Finally it was Golden Gopher, Sam Warning who broke opened the scoring putting Minnesota up 1-0. 

That lead, however, was extremely short lived as, Connor Gaarder tied the game for the underdogs. North Dakota came into the tournament as a 4th seed in their region yet were 13th in the National Polls, while Minnesota was number 1. The Sioux were not to be taken lightly though. Historically they have the most titles of any of the teams remaining (7), also they have more players drafted by the NHL (15) than any other squad. However Minnesota has 5 titles and 14 drafted players. 

Minnesota defeats UND 2-1
Still tied at 1 with just over 90 seconds remaining, Minnesota put themselves in a very dangerous position as they were called for a penalty. North Dakota struggled to get anything on net during the PowerPlay but had an offensive zone draw with 9 seconds left in regulation. If they were to go to overtime, the Sioux would have carry over PowerPlay time. It seemed as if they took solice in this and took their foot off the gas for the final draw. 

Minnesota rushed down the ice short handed as the clock was winding down. Kyle Rau, the captain and Florida Panthers 2011 3rd round draft pick, took a shot that was blocked and Justin Holl, Chicago's 2012 2nd rounder, found it and put it in the back of the net as the clock expired. 

After further review the goal crossed the line with just .6 seconds left, sending the Minnesota Golden Gophers to the NCAA Frozen Four Championship with the 2-1 win. 

Drop The Puck:
The Union College Dutchmen will face off against the Minnesota Golden Gophers for the NCAA Frozen Four National Title on Saturday night at 7:30 in Philadelphia. 

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Flyers Fall To Lightning Again

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-2 tonight. 

Heading into the final period, both teams were knotted at 1 a piece, but it was Tampa Bay who took over, scoring 3 times clinching the victory. 

With the loss, the Flyers cannot finish the season any higher than the 3rd seed in the division, meaning that they will start the playoffs on the road. Philadelphia is currently tied with both Columbus and Detroit with 91 points, yet currently own the tiebreaker against both. 

Tyler Johnson scored just 2 minutes into the game for Tampa, who held that lead until late in the 2nd. While on the PowerPlay, Wayne Simmonds tied the game at 1 with his 27th of the season. 

The Lightning then scored back to back goals separated by just over 5 minutes on tallies from Richard Panik and Eric Brewer. 

Sean Couturier responded cutting the lead to 1, but then the Flyers shot themselves in the foot as Scott Hartnell took a foolish penalty. 

On the ensuing PowerPlay, Steven Stamkos put this game away scoring his 25th of the year putting the Lightning back up for 2; this time for good. 

Game Notes:
  • The Lightning swept the season series with the Flyers for the first time since 2005-06 season. 
  • Both teams went 1 for 3 on their respective PowerPlays. 
  • Claude Giroux, who got an assist on Simmonds goal, took a game high 7 shots. 
  • Mark Streit registered an assist on Couturier's goal, becoming the 6th Flyer to pick up 40 points this season. 
  • It is the 5th season (of 8) that Streit has scored 40+ points in his career. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will face the Pittsburgh Penguins on Saturday. 

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Flyers Are Playoff Bound

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Florida Panthers 5-2 tonight.

The victory over the Panthers makes it official: the Flyers are going to the playoffs. 

Starting the season 1-7, many thought this day might not come, but since then Philadelphia learned their new system with their new head coach Craig Berube and started playing like a team and winning hockey games. 

Captain Claude Giroux stressed on numerous occasions early in the season that this team will make the playoffs, despite their early struggles. "We're going to go game by game, and we will make the playoffs," Giroux said in an interview after the team lost their franchise worst 6th out of 7 games to start the season. Giroux put the Flyers on his back and carried them into success. And tonight wasn't any different. Giroux scored 2 goals including the game winner and was awarded the number one star of the game. 

But it wasn't all Giroux. The Flyers continue to prove that they are truly a diverse team. Vincent Lecavalier scored his 20th goal of the season tonight giving the Flyers their 7th 20-goal scorer this season (Claude Giroux: 27, Wayne Simmonds: 26, Jake Voracek: 21, Matt Read: 21, Scott Hartnell: 20, Vincent Lecavalier: 20, Brayden Schenn: 20). Philadelphia became the first team to accomplish this. In fact no other team has 6 20-goal scorers. 

All that said, arguably the Flyers most valuable player isn't even on that list. Steve Mason has been terrific all season which included the beginning when this team went the first 15 game averaging just 1.4 goals per game. Mason kept the Flyers in games, giving them chances to steal contests they had no business being in. Mason gave Philadelphia stability and the confidence to kick start their season. 

After the 1-7 start, the next 33 days Philadelphia went 9-3-2 finally reaching the .500 mark in their schedule. But it wasn't until December 23rd that the Flyers passed that mark and never looked back going 24-13-5 since. 

With tonight's 4 goal effort in the 2nd period, on tallies from Lecavalier, 2 from Giroux and another from Sean Couturier, the Flyers clinch a berth in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs. It is the 17th time in their last 19 season that Philadelphia has made the playoffs and their 37th time overall. 

The Flyers are currently in 3rd place with 91 points, 2 behind the NY Rangers and 2 ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets. 

Game Notes:
  • Starting the 3rd period up 4-0, Philadelphia fell asleep. The Panthers outshot the Flyers 16-3, while scoring 2 goals, putting all the pressure back on Philadelphia. 
  • The Flyers though again proved resilient and as they added another goal, this time from Tye McGinn, thwarting any chance for a Panthers comeback. 
  • Steve Mason was a one man show in the 3rd period. Mason stopped 38 shots on 40 attempts tonight. 
  • Yesterday it was announced that Zac Rinaldo will be suspended 4 games for his illegal check to the head. Today he served his first game. 
  • Steve Downie returned to action tonight after missing time with an upper body injury. 
  • The Flyers went 0 for 3 on their PowerPlay and 1 for 1 on the penalty kill. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will look to extend their winning streak when they go to Tampa Bay to face the Lightning. 

Rinaldo Suspended

The NHL announced today that Philadelphia Flyers forward Zac Rinaldo will be suspended 4 games for an 'illegal check to the head' on Buffalo Sabres defenseman Chad Ruhwedel during Sunday's game. 

Rinaldo launched into Ruhwedel making his head the principle point of contact. This is a hit the league has been trying to remove for the past few years. 

Also taken into account was that Rinaldo is a repeat offender (suspended once and fined twice) and that Ruhwedel suffered an injury (concussion) as a result of the play. 

The Flyers, who are 1 win away from clinching the playoffs, only have 4 games remaining in the regular season. 

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Flyers End 4 Game Skid, Defeat Sabres

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Buffalo Sabres 5-2 tonight.

Philadelphia played a great game from start to finish when they needed it the most. The Flyers had lost their previous 4 games and desperately needed points in the standings. 

Schenn scores 19th and 20th goals
They got contributions from all over as Brayden Schenn scored twice for the 2nd line, Zac Rinaldo lit the lamp for the 3rd line and Vinny Lecavalier for the 4th. 

The Flyers as a team also outshot the Sabres 36-19. Also their special teams stepped up when it mattered the most. Philadelphia killed off 4 PowerPlays in the 1st and 2nd period, while adding a PowerPlay goal of their own on Brayden Schenn's first tally. 

The bad news for the Flyers is that they may not have Rinaldo for the next few games. Rinaldo targeted the head of Sabres defenseman Chad Ruhwedel in a check in the 3rd period. Rinaldo was given a match penalty (which is automatically put up for review for suspension) and a game misconduct. 

The Flyers already had a 4-0 lead prior to the penalty on goals from Matt Read, Rinaldo, Schenn, and Lecavalier, but now had to kill a 5 minute major. 

The Sabres were finally able to score when Cody Hodgson deflected a shot from the point breaking Steve Mason's shutout bid, but the Flyers escaped any further damage. 

Brayden Schenn then added his 2nd of the game and 20th of the season on a beautiful roof-shot racing up the ice. 

Mike Weber added a meaningless goal for the Sabres late in the period, but it was the Flyers who raised their sticks at the end of the game celebrating their 40th win of the season. 

The victory keeps the Flyers 2 points ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets for 3rd place in the Metro division. 

Game Notes:
  • Brayden Schenn snapped a 7 game goalless drought tonight. 
  • It was Schenn's 2nd multi goal game of the season and 5th of his career. 
  • Brayden became the 6th Flyer to reach the 20 goal plateau this season.
  • Also Schenn's 20 goals, 21 assists and 41 points are all career highs for the center. 
  • Lecavalier is next in line as he picked up his 19th goal tonight. 
  • The Flyers went 5 for 6 on the penalty kill and 1 for 4 on the PowerPlay. 
  • It's been 15 games since the Flyers last scored more than 4 goals in a game. 
  • Matt Read picked up his 21st goal of the season. 
  • Mark Streit registered 3 assists tonight. It was Streit's first 3 point game as a Flyer and first since January 10th 2012 when he was an Islander. 
Drop The Puck:
Philadelphia will look to start a winning streak when they face the Florida Panthers on Tuesday.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Bruins Hand Flyers Their 4th Straight Loss

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the Boston Bruins 5-2 this afternoon.

Entering the 3rd period tied at 2, Boston came out and took over this hockey game. The Bruins outshot the Flyers 22-8 while scoring 3 unanswered goals handing the Flyers their 4th consecutive loss. 

Having now lost 6 of their last 7 games including the 4 in a row, Philadelphia is hanging on to their 3rd place spot by a thread. They have 87 points, which is still 2 points ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets for the final spot in the Metro division. 

"We got outplayed and didn't stick to our game plan," Claude Giroux told CSNPhilly after the game. "In the 1st and 2nd period it was a tight game, but in the 3rd period we got away from our game."

Boston got on the board first in the opening period from a late goal by David Krejci. After a quiet start to the 2nd period, things picked up late where 3 goals were scored in 1:45 minutes. 

While on the PowerPlay, Wayne Simmonds ended the Flyers long shutout streak of over 160 minutes with his 26th of the season. 

The Bruins, however, answered back immediately. Just 19 seconds later, Milan Lucic blasted a shot past Ray Emery restoring Boston's lead. 

Jay Rosehill then got on the board only 1:26 minutes following Lucic's tally. Rosehill made a nice move in front scoring his 2nd of the season and 5th goal of his career. 

The 3rd period got underway and it was all Boston. Johnny Boychuk and Lucic scored goals 31 seconds apart with just over 6 minutes to play giving the Bruins a commanding 4-2 lead. 

Chris Kelly sealed the deal with an empty net goal finalizing the score at 5-2. 

"The 3rd period wasn't good in general," coach Craig Berube said in an interview with CSNPhilly. "We have to come out and initiate, we can't sit back and let teams come at you. We were on our heals and didn't protect the net. We made it too easy for them."

Game Notes:
  • The Boston Bruins sweep the season series with the Flyers for the first time since the 1989-90 season. 
  • Sean Couturier played in his 200th NHL game today. 
  • Claude Giroux registered an assist on Wayne Simmonds goal today. That ends his 3 game pointless streak. 
  • The Simmonds goal also ended Philadelphia's 3 game drought without a PowerPlay goal. The Flyers went 1 for 3 on the man advantage. 
  • Philadelphia went 1 for 1 on the penalty kill. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will look to end this losing streak tomorrow night when they host the Buffalo Sabres. 

Thursday, April 3, 2014

After 14 Years, The Blue Jackets Finally Win in Philadelphia

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-0 tonight.

The Blue Jackets snapped a 6 game losing streak in Philadelphia as they were finally able to come away with the 'W' for the first time in the city of Brotherly Love since their inception in 2000. Since then, the Flyers had a 5-0-1 record against them at home. 

The Philadelphia Flyers have now been shutout for the second consecutive game, have lost 3 in a row and 5 of their last 6 contests. 

Columbus was the hungrier team tonight as they out worked, out battled and out skated Philadelphia tonight. 

But it came down to special teams, which became the difference maker this evening. The Flyers went 0 for 4 on their PowerPlay, while failing to generate any good chances or momentum. On the other side, the Jackets scored the eventual game winning goal on the PowerPlay in the 2nd period. 

James Wisniewski found the back of the net for Columbus, finally breaking a scoreless tie on the PowerPlay with just over 3 minutes left in the middle stanza. They went 1 for 4 on the man advantage. 

This was not just a struggle tonight for Philadelphia. The Flyers have failed to score a PowerPlay goal in each of their last 5 losses going 0 for 16. They are also just 4 for their last 32 (12%) over the span of their last 9 games. 

The Flyers needed another one of their patented 3rd period comebacks; however, it was the Jackets who had the better period. In the first 10 minutes of the 3rd, Columbus outshot Philadelphia 9-2 plus added an insurance goal just 3 minutes in when the puck deflected off Brandon Dubinsky's skate. 

Philadelphia made a furious effort in the final 3 minutes taking 7 shots yet Blue Jackets goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky stood tall, preserving his 4th shutout of the season. 

The loss now brings Columbus to within 2 points of Philadelphia in the standings for 3rd place. 

Game Notes:
  • The Flyers have been shutout for the last 130:25 minutes of game time.  
  • The last time the Flyers were shutout 2 games in a row was November 28-December 3rd 2009. 
  • Claude Giroux has now gone 3 games without a point. It is the longest he has gone since October 11th, when he started the season 5 games without a point. 
  • Scott Hartnell had an incredible 8 shots tonight. It's the most he's taken in a game since January 22, 2012 when he took 9. 
  • Kimmo Timonen returned to action tonight after missing a game with an upper body injury. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will look to get back on the winning side when they face the Boston Bruins again on Saturday. 

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Flyers Fall To Blues In Shootout

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the St. Louis Blues 1-0 in a shootout tonight.

Goaltenders Ryan Miller and Ray Emery were stellar today as they stopped all 59 shots faced. Miller made 31 saves, while Emery stopped 28, including 13 in the 3rd period and overtime. 

After 65 minutes of great defense and perfect goaltending from both teams, a shootout was needed. 

TJ Oshie and Kevin Shattenkirk scored in the shootout for the Blues while Vincent Lecavalier and Claude Giroux failed to light the lamp for the Flyers.  

"We played a good hockey game and got a point out of it," coach Craig Berube told CSNPhilly. "Of course we want 2 points, but we just couldn't put it in the back of the net." 

Philadelphia remains in 3rd place with a 39-27-9 record, still 4 points ahead of the Blue Jackets and 6 ahead of the Capitals. 

Game Notes:
  • The Flyers went 0 for 2 on their PowerPlay and 3 for 3 on the penalty kill. 
  • Ray Emery earned his 2nd shutout of the season and first since November 2nd against the Devils. 
  • Today was the first time the Flyers were shutout since December 2nd against the Wild. 
  • March 10th 2012 was the last time the Flyers were involved in a 0-0 shootout game. The Flyers won 1-0 when Giroux scored in that shootout. 
  • Andrew MacDonald played a team high 27:25 minutes tonight. It was the most he's played since being acquired by the Flyers. 
  • Claude Giroux failed to register a point in his second consecutive game. It was the first time he has failed to gain points in 2 straight since the December 31st and January 2nd games (34 games ago). 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers will face the team chasing them in the divisional standings the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday night. 

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Lecavalier Scores 400th in Shootout Loss to Bruins

The Philadelphia Flyers lost to the Boston Bruins 4-3 in a shootout today.

Vincent Lecavalier picked up his 400th and 401st career goals in dramatic fashion today despite the loss to the East's top team. 

1098 games in, plus 5:25 minutes into the 1st period, Lecavalier crossed the blue line, playing on the 4th line, and ripped a shot past Bruins goalie Tuuka Rask, lighting the lamp for the 400th time in his long and illustrious career. 

But Vinny wasn't finish. Trailing 3-2 late in the game, Lecavalier was rewarded as the 6th man on the ice to replace Steve Mason once pulled. And with just 25 seconds remaining, Lecavalier sent all nineteen plus thousand people to their feet in elation as he tied this game at 3 apiece. Jake Voracek was able to corral the bouncing puck and fed Lecavalier back door who buried it into the wide open cage. 

Philadelphia went on to dominate the overtime taking 8 shots to the Bruins' 1; however, they were not able to seal the deal and this game was heading to a shootout.   

In the shootout, Claude Giroux and Patrice Bergeron traded goals sending it to extra shooters. Reilly Smith finally ended this one in the 5th round, giving Boston their 9th straight road win. 

The Flyers, however, picked up a well deserved and very valuable point with their hard fought effort today. Philadelphia took a season high 52 shots out shooting the Bruins by 22 this afternoon. With the point, the Flyers currently jump back into 2nd place in a tie with the New York Rangers, who both have 86 points each. 

Andrej Meszaros scored for the Bruins in the 1st period to tie things up at 1. It was his first game versus the Flyers since they traded him away at the dealine. Meszaros' goal also marks the 4th time from 3 separate teams that an ex Flyer has scored against Philadelphia in the last 4 games (Jeff Carter and Justin Williams for LA; James van Riemsdyk for Toronto; Meszaros for Boston). 

Kimmo Timonen scored for the Flyers late in the 1st, but Boston erased Philadelphia's lead in the 2nd scoring twice on goals from Zdeno Chara and Patrice Bergeron. 

The shootout loss leaves the Flyers with a 39-27-8 record; they have 8 games remaining. 

Game Notes:
  • Philadelphia outshot the Bruins 52-30. It tied their highest shots advantage (22) for the season (they out shot Edmonton 38-16 on December 28th). 
  • The 52 shots taken was a season high for the Flyers. Their previous high was 46. They have only taken 40 or more shots 3 times this season prior to tonight. They now have a 3-0-1 recorded when taking 40+ shots. 
  • The last time the Flyers took more shots was February 21st 2012 when they registered 55. 
  • The Flyers allowed their first PowerPlay goal against in their last 5 games. 
  • Philadelphia's PowerPlay went scoreless (0 for 4) for the third time in their last 4 games. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers get back into action on Tuesday when they face the St. Louis Blues. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

Flyers End Losing Streak, Extend Leafs' to 7

The Philadelphia Flyers defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs 4-2 tonight.

Giroux with 3 points including GWG
The Flyers snapped their 2 game losing streak by receiving a great effort from
their captain, Claude Giroux. Giroux picked up 2 assists, 1 in the 1st and 1 in the 2nd, then scored his 25th goal of the season, which turned out to be the game winner for Philadelphia. It was the 6th time this season Giroux registered 3 points or more in a game; the Flyers are now 6-0 in those games. 

Before the game, Vincent Lecavalier was demoted to the 4th line for his recent lack of production. Lecavalier recorded 14 points in his first 22 games; however, he then suffered from back spasms causing him to miss 3 weeks of action. After returning from injury, Lecavalier has played in 37 games and has only recorded only 16 points. 

The good teammate that Lecavalier is, he was able to put it behind him and work hard to get back to where he was. And he was rewarded tonight. Lecavalier scored the game's opening goal for the Flyers while on the PowerPlay. Philadelphia was on a 2 man advantage, when Lecavalier one-timed his 16th goal of the season. 

James van Riemsdyk erased that lead immediately after the 2nd period began. The former Flyer scored just 4 seconds into the middle period completely catching the Flyers off guard, who had a man in the box for only 2 more seconds.  

Halfway through the period, the Flyers PowerPlay struck again. Scott Hartnell tipped in Kimmo Timonen's shot putting Philadelphia in the lead once again. 

Claude Giroux and Leafs Dave Bolland traded goals 1:23 minutes apart, then it was Wayne Simmonds, who would give the Flyers their largest lead of the night. Simmonds took advantage of a Dion Phaneuf misplay in the slot and buried his 25th goal of the season giving the Flyers a 4-2 lead. 

After Simmonds' tally, which came at 12:39, the Flyers shutdown the Leafs allowing only 1 shot on goal. 

Steve Mason stopped 32 shots on 34 attempts sending the Leafs home with their 7th straight loss, while the Flyers improve to 39-27-7, still in 3rd place, 5 points ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets. 

Game Notes:
  • The Flyers went 2 for 4 on the PowerPlay on goals by Vincent Lecavalier and Scott Hartnell. 
  • Philadelphia also went a perfect 4 for 4 on the penalty kill. 
  • They have gone 4 consecutive games without allowing a PowerPlay goal (16 for 16) and have only surrendered 1 PowerPlay goal against in their last 10 (36 for 37). 
  • The 3 points by Giroux jumps him into 3rd place in scoring in the league with 78. He is only 1 behind Ryan Getzlaf for 2nd. 
  • In the first 15 games of the season, Giroux only registered 7 points. Since then he has picked up 71 points in 58 games. 
  • With Lecavalier on the forth line, Tye McGinn was supposed to take his place on the second line. Instead, McGinn only played 8:13 minutes while Lecavalier played 13:32. 
Drop The Puck:
The Flyers get back into action on Sunday when they host the top team in the Eastern conference, the Boston Bruins. 

With a heavy heart, I'd like to dedicate this post to DropThePuck contributor and good friend Dave Nahill, who lost his father last night. The world lost a good man. Our thoughts and prayers go out to you and your family Dave.