Thursday, April 17, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

Flyers show heart; Leighton (not Turco) in nets

NEWARK, N.J _ Goalie Michael Leighton called it a "character" win.

Flyers show heart; Leighton (not Turco) in nets

Michael Leighton has nine wins in 15 appearances with the Flyers. (Matt Slocum/AP)
Michael Leighton has nine wins in 15 appearances with the Flyers. (Matt Slocum/AP)


    NEWARK, N.J _  Goalie Michael Leighton called it a "character" win.

    Defenseman Chris Pronger said the Flyers "showed a lot of moxie."

    No argument here.

   For the second time in as many games, the Flyers overcame a 2-0 deficit and stunned the Atlantic Division-leading New Jersey Devils, 3-2.

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   On Wednesday, it was Simon Gagne who provided the dramatic goal, scoring with 1:33 left in overtime to give the Flyers the win at the Prudential Center.

    Gagne had not scored a goal in his previous 12 games.

     “Every time you come to the game, you know it’s on your mind the whole time," he said of his scoring slump. "You try not to think too much about it, but it is (there). I think this one tonight will help me to take the big monkey off my back.”

    Gagne now has seven goals.

   Before facing the Devils twice this week, the Flyers had been 5-25 in games in which they trailed at any point.

   But after two dramatic comebacks, they are finally showing the heart that had been missing. They are now 4-1 against the Devils this season.

   * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

     Don't believe the rumors about Dallas goalie Marty Turco coming to the Flyers.

    GM Paul Holmgren said they weren't true last week and, besides, who needs Turco (and his $5.7 million cap hit) with the way Leighton is playing?

    The late-blooming Leighton has been, in a word, sensational.

     Ever since they claimed him off re-entry waivers from Carolina, Leighton has been one of the NHL's most consistent goalies. In 15 games with the  Flyers before Wednesday, Leighton was 9-3-1 (with two no-decisions) and a 2.24 goals-against average and .925 save percentage.
     If he had enough starts to qualify for the league leaders, his goals-against average would be fifth in the NHL. His GAA with the Flyers is actually slightly lower than the mark compiled by Martin Brodeur (2.27), the Devils’ legendary goalie.
   The Flyers don't need another goalie. They need someone to boost their offense.

        * * * * * * * * * * * 
      Is goalie Ray Emery’s injured left hip feeling better? Was it a good sign that he was taking shots from his teammates at Wednesday’s morning skate in Newark? Is he eventually headed for surgery?
    Maybe.
    Maybe not.
    Emery would not talk with reporters after Wednesday morning’s practice, referring all questions to Holmgren, who later issued a statement saying the results of the goalie's MRI were not yet known.

      Just like when Emery suffered an abdominal injury a few months ago, there is a shroud of secrecy around the goaltender’s latest injury.
    * * * * * * * * * 

    Thumbs up:  Despite the blizzard, more than 5,000 fans braved the elements and attended Wednesday's game.

     Thumbs down: The Devils announced that fans who couldn't get to the game will be given a 50 percent discount on tickets to one of three future games. Not giving fans a FREE ticket to another game is a joke.

         

Sam Carchidi Inquirer Staff Writer
About this blog
Broad Street Bull is your place for the latest updates, trade rumors, and everything connected to the Philadelphia Flyers. Reach Sam at scarchidi@phillynews.com.

Sam Carchidi Inquirer Staff Writer
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