After much deliberation and dramatic announcement ceremony on Wednesday, Steve Yzerman’s Team Canada has been named for the 2010 Olympics.
The list, with some noticeable omissions, includes Flyers’ defenseman Chris Pronger and forward captain Mike Richards. Jeff Carter was placed on the stand-in list in case injury should strike a roster player.
After missing 22 games due to a double hernia suffered on Oct. 26, Flyers’ forward Simon Gagne is set to make his return to the active lineup, Saturday against the New York Rangers.
“I’m very excited,” Gagne told the media on Friday. “I think today was pretty much the first time I enjoyed myself in practice. I knew the way I was feeling today that tomorrow was going to be my first day back.”
According to a report by Ruefrontenac.com, Montreal general manager Bob Gainey offered the Flyers a trade involving goaltender Jaroslav Halak, when it was made public that Flyers’ goalie Ray Emery would be out for six weeks with abdomen surgery.
”I took this step because it is Jaroslav’s wish to have his chance to play,” said Gainey, who noted that the Flyers were not the only team offered. ”He feels ready to play a more important part.”
The original report had Gainey asking for a top-6 forward, but Gainey noted that wasn’t the case.
”Let’s be realistic,” Gainey told ruefrontenac.com. “I received a second round pick from the Washington Capitals for Cristobal Huet and the Flyers gave up a second round pick from Buffalo for Martin Biron.”
The Flyers did not tender an offer for the 24-year old, who carries a $775,000 cap hit.
On Tuesday, the Flyers picked up goaltender Michael Leighton off waivers from Carolina. Leighton will replace Johan Backlund as the back up until Emery returns.
In a running segment on TSN.ca for Off the Record, former Flyer and all-time hockey great Jeremy Roenick, gives his two-cents about news from around the NHL. When hitting on the issue of his former club, Roenick gave a very interesting take.
“There’s somebody bad in that locker room,” he said. “Somebody is tainting something in that locker room, whether it’s the leadership, or somebody who is leading them the wrong way, or somebody who is doing something and other people are following off the ice. They need to straighten that stuff up inside the locker room.”
After stating before Monday’s contest against Montreal that goaltender Ray Emery has “some nagging injuries, but is fit to play,” the Flyers have placed Emery on injured reserved with an abdomen injury. Brian Boucher is set to make back-to-back starts for the second time this season. Emery will need surgery to repair the tear and will miss six weeks.
Emery, who was thought to be held out of the game in Montreal to gain confidence against a weaker Islanders team, was abruptly placed on the IRwithout any media notification. General manager Paul Holmgren will address the situation prior to the tonight’s game.
An injury could explain why Emery has hit a wall this season. After beginning the year with a respectable record and a goals against average of just over 2.00, Emery has dropped four of his last five starts.
In the first period of a 1-1 deadlock between the Washington Capitals and Philadelphia Flyers, Flyers’ forward Dan Carcillo took exception to a high stick from gritty Capitals’ forward Matt Bradley. Carcillo cross checked Bradley, then both squared off to fight. But before Bradley’s gloves hit the ice, Carcillo got the jump and knocked out Bradley with a hard right cross that sent the Flyers’ home crowd into a frenzy for the first time in over two weeks.
Carcillo received 2-minutes for instigator, 2-minutes for cross checking, 5-minutes for fighting, 10-minute misconduct and game misconduct. The penalties gave Washington a never-before-seen 9-minute power play, in which the Caps scored three times. Matt Bradley did not return to the game.
Any game misconduct is reviewed by the league office and deserving or not, Carcillo will likely be suspended. However, the referees, once again, rule by result, not intent. Bradley squared off and was in the process of dropping his gloves, simply getting beat to the draw. If Bradley eats the first punch and fights back, this becomes just another hockey fight. Say what you want about Carcillo and his lack of composure, but he has a history of being an honorable fighter.
TSN is reporting that the Flyers have been granted permission by the Carolina Hurricanes to hire former Hurricanes’ coach Peter Laviolette to replace John Stevens.
According to the report, Laviolette is expected to make his coaching debut on Saturday, as the Flyers take on the Washington Capitals.
US born, Laviolette has a career coaching record of 244-188 and earned a Stanley Cup championship with the Hurricanes in 2005-06. He was fired by the Hurricanes in 2008-09.
However, Laviolette’s personal philsophy may clash with the Flyers’. In an interview with THN, Laviolette explained why he banned his team from fighting in the post season.
“I have a very strict no-fighting policy for our team,” LHe said. “Last year in the playoffs Mike Commodore got into a fight and I said, ‘OK, that’s it. No more fighting.’ I simply cannot afford to lose a player like Mike Commodore to an injury he may sustain in a fight.
“Take a guy like Erik Cole. If we allowed him to fight, I know he would do it. Now if he gets hurt in a fight, our team has lost a very valuable asset. How do I justify that? I can’t. It just doesn’t make sense to me to allow our guys to fight.”
Lets hope he talks to Holmgren before implementing that in Philly.
Ryan Bright (Philabright@gmail.com) is a sports writer, born and raised in the Philadelphia area. A graduate of West Chester University, he has been with the Daily Local News in Chester County since early 2007, working as the paper's college and high school ice hockey beat writer. In 2010, began as a contributer for CSNPhilly.com, covering the Flyers and the Philadelphia Union.