Archive: April, 2013
Bob Vetrone Jr.
The human body can go 21 days or so without food, but only three days without sleep or water ... The Carpenters sang "I Won't Last a Day Without You." ... But how long can Philly sports fans last without a playoff game? Well, we may be on the verge of finding out.
Since the Flyers were eliminated from playoff contention Friday night, the next possible postseason game would be if the Phils were to be in a wild-card game on Oct. 1. At that point, there would have been 492 days in between playoff appearances (May 26, 2012; Sixers' Game 7 loss to the Celtics).
Should the Phils falter, Chip Kelly's Eagles could end the string as early as Jan. 4, 2014 (587 days) ... or the Sixers and/or Flyers could nip it next April as it approaches 700 days.
It’s only a small sample, but recently acquired goalie Steve Mason has played much better _ and has looked more confident _ for the Flyers than he did in Columbus this year.
His Blue Jackets numbers: 2.95 goals-against average and .899 save percentage in 13 games.
His Flyers numbers: 2.08 goals-against average and .931 save percentage in five games.
Wayne Simmonds talks about the the first hat trick of his career after the Flyers' 5-3 win over the Carolina Hurricanes.
The Flyers will almost certainly not be in the Stanley Cup playoffs for just the second time in the last 18 seasons, so the last four regular-season games are a matter of pride.
“Being a professional, you have to leave it all out there,” said forward Danny Briere, whose team plays in Carolina on Saturday night. “I think the guys are ready to do that no matter where we are in the standings. It’s frustrating, it’s disappointing, but we’re getting paid to do that, so there is no reason for us to not give it all we have left.”
The Flyers (19-22-3) would have to win all four games to finish above .500; they have not been above .500 at any point this season.
It's often said that sports journalists are a cynical bunch, and for the most part it's true.
At the very least, we try not to grow too emotionally attached to events, because there are so many things that can move us.
On Wednesday night, though, I watched a small gesture that left a big impression.
There is only a week and a half left in the NHL season and already a good amount of teams have clinched playoff spots. But we will get a chance to see teams scratch and claw for the final playoff spots in each conference. With all of that said, let’s check in with the league this week.
1. Chicago Blackhawks (33-5-4) Last week: 1
The Blackhawks are in prime position to win it all this year, especially with the dynamic duo of Patrick Kane and Jonathan Toews. The ‘Hawks stay at No. 1 again this week as they increased their winning streak to six.
2. Pittsburgh Penguins (33-10-0) Last week: 2
The Penguins have proven that their stellar performance did not come from captain Sidney Crosby alone. In his absence they have clinched both a spot in the playoffs and the Atlantic Division.
The Boston Bruins hosted the Buffalo Sabres at TD Garden in Boston Wednesday night. The game marked the first professional sporting event since the bombings that marred the Boston Marathon Monday.
Rene Rancourt, the Bruins' anthem singer since 1976, took to the ice to sing The Star-Spangled Banner in front of the Boston faithful.
Bruins fans delivered an emotional rendition of their own, and Rancourt let them go with it.
The Flyers gathered for their annual team photo and did not practice, so there was no player availability. Steve Mason's impressive performance on Tuesday night still resonates, though, so let's stick with that theme.
It was a night of firsts for Mason. Not only did he capture a win in his first start at the Wells Fargo Center since joining the team on April 3, but he also netted his highest save total (38) in more than a full calendar year.
It was also the Flyers' first win of the season without Ilya Bryzgalov (18-16-3) in net. Michael Leighton was 0-1-0; Brian Boucher was 0-2-0.