Better late than never…
My Flyers coverage in one place…
|Game 1||Sunday, April 29||vs. New Jersey||3:00 p.m. (NBC, CBC)|
|Game 2||Tuesday, May 1||vs. New Jersey||7:30 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)|
|Game 3||Thursday, May 3||at New Jersey||7:30 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)|
|Game 4||Sunday, May 6||at New Jersey||7:30 p.m. (NBC Sports Network)|
|*Game 5||Tuesday, May 8||vs. New Jersey||TBD (NBC Sports Network)|
|*Game 6||Thursday, May 10||at New Jersey||TBD (TBD, Television TBD)|
|*Game 7||Saturday, May 12||vs. New Jersey||TBD (TBD, Television TBD)|
* – if necessary
The following ran in the Metro newspaper on April 22, 2012.
In the locker room before the game even started, Claude Giroux sent a message. In a pressure situation, he wanted the weight on his shoulders. Giroux doesn’t have a “C” on his jersey and apparently he doesn’t need one to act like he’s the Flyers’ captain.
“When the best player in the world comes up to you and tells you, ‘I don’t know who you’re planning on starting tonight, but I want that first shift,’ that says everything you need to know about Claude Giroux right there,” Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette said.
The following ran on CSNPhilly.com on April 23, 2012.
Like any other game, according to Ilya Bryzgalov, the Flyers goalie stepped out onto the ice and took warm-ups. He stretched. He faced shots and he played a game.
Claude Giroux’s story is a little different.
“It’s weird to say, but in the warmup we kinda know if he’s gonna have a good game,” Giroux said of his goaltender. “He was ready to go. He was our best player on the ice tonight. He gave us a chance to win.”
Bryzgalov wasn’t flashy. He wasn’t brilliant. But he was solid and quietly made 30 saves. That’s all the Flyers needed.
VOORHEES, N.J. — A day after the Flyers took a 2-0 lead in a playoff series, the biggest smile was on the face of James van Riemsdyk, who hasn’t played in either game. The power forward has been out of the lineup since Mar. 1 with a broken left foot when he blocked a Milan Jurchina slapshot. For the first time, he practiced with his teammates Saturday morning.
“Obviously it’s one of those things where it’s tough to jump in this time of year, but the team’s been doing a great job,” van Riemsdyk said. “I’m just doing what I can to just be positive and be a good team guy and be a good cheerleader right now. That’s all you can do and just focus on getting myself healthy and back in the lineup.”
Van Riemsdyk had to watch two of the team’s most exciting games from his couch while his teammates were working on impressive back-to-back comebacks in Pittsburgh.
“I texted him after the game and he texted me back,” Claude Giroux said. “I think he was pretty pumped. Obviously he wants to be on the ice. He wants to be able to help the team. To have him, it’s gonna be a boost for sure.”
Van Riemsdyk won’t be able to contribute on Sunday in Game 3, but he’s hoping the wait won’t be much longer. He had been sporting a huge walking boot for weeks, but has downgraded to a smaller brace that is less restrictive. Saturday morning, he skated with a skate guard on top of his left foot, which is still recovering.
The following ran in the Metro newspaper on April 11, 2012.
Wayne Simmonds is a veteran of all of a dozen playoff games. He’s a confident player and thought he was ready for postseason play — but once you step on the ice in the playoffs, things change.
“My first year, I didn’t really realize what was going on,” Simmonds said. “It takes you a couple minutes. You get hit, or you hit somebody, and it gets you into the game. They’ll figure it out really quick.”
The 28-goal scorer is referring to the 12 rookies that have suited up for the Flyers this season. The Flyers had the most rookie games played (445) and points from rookies (129). After Mike Richards and Jeff Carter left, the Flyers became a team powered by youth and spent all season proving why that isn’t a bad thing.
Ottawa gave New York fits in the regular season, taking three of four games in the season series. Yet as anyone in the NHL will tell you, the playoffs are a different beast. The Rangers haven’t had much to play for in a long time. That could make them sluggish to start the series, but they are too good of a team not to rebound. Henrik Lundqvist will show why he’s a Vezina hopeful and the Rangers will — eventually — return to form.
RANGERS in 6
Even though Washington won both games in Boston this season, the Caps have one of the conference’s worst road records. TD Garden is an intimidating place to play — especially in the playoffs — and Boston is the NHL’s highest-scoring team. Those factors, to go along with a suspect blueline in the nation’s capital, spell an easy first round for the defending Cup champions.
BRUINS in 5
|Game 1||Wednesday, April 11||at Pittsburgh||7:30 PM (CSN-HD, NBCSN, TSN)|
|Game 2||Friday, April 13||at Pittsburgh||7:30 PM (CSN-HD, NBCSN, TSN)|
|Game 3||Sunday, April 15||vs. Pittsburgh||3:00 PM (NBC, TSN)|
|Game 4||Wednesday, April 18||vs. Pittsburgh||7:30 PM (CSN-HD, NBCSN, TSN)|
|*Game 5||Friday, April 20||at Pittsburgh||7:30 PM (CSN-HD, NBCSN, TSN)|
|*Game 6||Sunday, April 22||vs. Pittsburgh||TBD (Television TBD)|
|*Game 7||Tuesday, April 24||at Pittsburgh||TBD (Television TBD)|
* – if necessary