Kukla's Korner Hockey
Some questions for Philadelphia Flyers coach John Stevens today.
Q. Can you talk about what Kimmo will mean not just on the ice, but off the ice in the room if he does come back and play on Sunday?
COACH STEVENS: Well, he’s a huge part of our team. I mean, through this year he’s progressed and in the playoffs he’s really taken his game to another level. I think just his presence around our team all year, he’s got deep respect by all his teammates. He just has composure all the time. I think that’s infectious on our team.
from Doubt About It,
So no, my problem isn’t with the Flyers. Not their players, and not even their fans. The fights at the end of the game? Whatever. It happens. My problem is with Versus tonight. It is bad enough to watch your team lose in the playoffs, but it is even worse when you have to basically listen to the opposing team’s broadcast.
Think I am being overzealous? Consider that when the Flyers played in Pittsburgh, Versus showed footage of Flyers fans in bars at Philly. Was similar footage shown of Penguins fans Tuesday night or tonight? Unless I missed it on the way to the fridge or the John, I dont think so. Nothing. Nada. Instead they showed all the Flyers fans signs and continually remarked how “funny Flyers fans are”.
thanks to the Pensblog for the pointer…
Don Cherry at ESPN wonders why Crosby and Malkin were on the ice with ten seconds left in the game.
from Joe Starkey of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
Forget about this one. Burn the tape.
That needed to be the Penguins’ mind-set the instant the buzzer sounded on their 4-2 loss Thursday night.
Forget about the retaliatory penalties, the phantom penalties, the ghastly turnovers and the failure to clear the front of the net early in the game.
Forget about the rowdy, hostile crowd that must have launched into its beloved “Crosby Sucks!” chant 10 times or more.
Forget about a wasted chance to not just eliminate the hated Flyers but humiliate them with a sweep and a post-series handshake on their home ice.
Q. You had talked all series about the team’s execution offensively. Do you think something in their minds was different for this game? A little less nervousness, perhaps, or they had nothing to lose?
COACH STEVENS: Yeah, but I just thought we’d come out with real good energy. We were skating with the puck. We got pucks, we didn’t just get pucks through the neutral zone, we had speed after the puck, which I thought made a difference. We got our power play, we started shooting the puck again. You know, I think we were trying to pass the puck to the net.
They’re a very good penalty killing team, and sometimes you don’t score on the initial shot, but you create secondary chances at the net. I thought the power play did that early, and really gave us momentum. Obviously, getting the lead was big for us, but we did some really good things in the game, especially early.
From Pierre LeBrun at the CP via Yahoo! Sports,
Malone’s father Greg also played for the Penguins, which is why Ryan grew up in Pittsburgh. Greg Malone, a New Brunswick native, also played for Quebec and Hartford and is now a scout for the Phoenix Coyotes after many years as a Penguins scout.
So not only did Ryan Malone grow up a Penguins fan, he literally grew up hanging around the team. “You definitely feel lucky,” Malone said. “I would have happily played anywhere but it’s an extra bonus to play for the team I grew up with. I’m privileged.”
Just how long he’ll be wearing that uniform remains to be seen. He’s an unrestricted free agent July 1 and his career-best season, 27 goals and 51 points, would fetch him a handsome raise over the US$1.45 million he made this season. Perhaps as much as $4.5 million on the open market. That will likely be too much money for a Penguins team that is looking to get star centre Evgeni Malkin to sign a rich, new extension this summer…
James_Taipei: Seth, if you were a betting man would you bet on the Penguins to close out the series today?(p.s. I don’t want to place a bet.)
Seth Rorabaugh: I’d stick money on it. They don’t want to extend this series any more than it has to.
steve_downie: Am i sitting tonight? I just wanted to know if my cheapshot on Sykora is going to be my final appearance of the series.
Seth Rorabaugh: I think the Flyers would be better off dressing 19 players than having you in the lineup. No offense.
*Be sure to check out Empty Netters later on, since Seth will probably be doing a liveblog of the game tonight. Fun is usually had by all.
Getting some answers today from Pittsburgh Penguins’ coach Michel Therrien.
Q. Can you give us an update on Gary Roberts’ status?
COACH THERRIEN: He’s still sick. He’s got pneumonia. It’s a mild case, so he’s listed day‑to‑day. He’s not going to play tonight.
Q. Is it something you expect him back later in the playoffs?
COACH THERRIEN: Yes, yes, hopefully. He’s on medication right now, and we’ll go from there.
Some questions this morning for Philadelphia coach John Stevens.
Q. What is the status of Braydon Coburn?
COACH STEVENS: Coby’s out today. We were hopeful yesterday. He got on the ice a little bit, but still not ready to play. I think he’s getting closer, but definitely not playing tonight.
Q. So are you going to keep Ryan Parent?
From Jef Feeley and Dawn McCarty at Bloomberg.com,
Flyers fans may be plotting their revenge, said Chris Young, 23, a native of the Philadelphia suburbs who now works in Pittsburgh. One possibility is putting an orange-and-black Flyers jersey on the statue of Roberto Clemente, the late Hall of Fame outfielder for Major League Baseball’s Pittsburgh Pirates, he said.
Fans on Internet sites have picked up the call, and are urging Flyers boosters in western Pennsylvania to mount an all- out jersey assault on the Clemente statue, which stands in front of the Pirates’ PNC Bank Park.
Young said he won’t participate in the high jinks himself because of Penguin fans’ reputation. It’s safer to watch the playoffs at home than in a bar, he said.
“I don’t have the courage to go and watch with all those belligerent Penguins fans,’’ Young said.
and more hockey fan chicanery between Pittsburgh and Philly
Update 12:47pm ET: On the same theme, there’s also a little chicanery from the players…
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