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Two days off in between games 5 and 6 of the Stanley Cup Finals couldn’t come at a better time for the Flyers and Danny Briere.
According to Sarah Baicker of CSNPhilly.com, Briere was in such bad shape after receiving stitches under his right eye as a result of third period high stick, that he was unavailable to the media during the post game.
“At first glance, I almost thought it was intentional,” Laviolette told the media. “The puck wasn’t even around. Looking at it again, it should have been a four minute penalty. You have to be in control of your stick out there. Dangerously close to a severe eye injury.”
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During the late stages of Wednesday’s 4-3 overtime Stanley Cup Finals victory of the Chicago Blackhawks, Flyers captain Mike Richards looked sluggish. With little jump, the 25-year-old center could be seen hunched over with elbows on his knees, as he coasted back to the bench.
It looked like he was out of gas.
“At times, it looks like he wants to do something but his body just won’t allow him to do it,” one unnamed former played told Steve Simmons of the QMI Agency. “It looks to me like he’s physically worn down.”
Chris Pronger’s job is to protect Flyers goalie Michael Leighton from any unsightly ghoul to enter his domain. Coincidently, he’s doing the same for Leighton’s daughter Elle.
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Ville Leino has been a revelation.
Since entering the active line up in game 5 of the Stanley Cup Quarterfinals against the New Jersey Devils, the 27-year old Finnish winger has amassed 15 playoff points (six goals, nine assists) to tie a Flyers franchise record for rookie scoring set by Brian Propp in 1980.
This secret to his success?
“A lot of ice time,” Leino told the Finnish Press after Wednesday’s 4-3 overtime victory over the Chicago Blackhawks in game 3 of the Stanley Cup Finals. “That’s what I’ve been trying to say. When you get to play, you get confidence and that’s the most important thing.”
When game 3 ended, just like in overtime, the Flyers were simply hungrier for the puck.
According to TSN’s Darren Dreger, immediately following Claude Giroux’s game-winning goal to give the Flyers their first win in the Stanley Cup Finals against the Chicago Blackhawks, teammate Darroll Powe came in possession of the game puck and gave it directly to Giroux. Other reports have Wachovia Center rink maintenance picking it up and handing it over to the Flyers.
Either way, no Chris Pronger, no Ben Eager and no problems.
Maybe it’s due to the holiday weekend or just the sheer population of the cities represented, either way, the Chicago Blackhawks and Philadelphia Flyers are cleaning up in the Stanley Cup Finals ratings game.
Chris Pronger doesn’t want you to be happy.
After losing consecutive one-goal games to the Chicago Blackhawks in the Stanley Cup Finals, Flyers defenseman Pronger was seen picking up the game puck and carrying it back into the locker room. The same game puck that rookie goaltender Antti Niemi would probably like to have.
“He was picking up the puck. I told him he could keep it,” said Chicago forward Ben Eager, who along with Pronger, received a game misconduct with no time on the clock.
The whispers of the re-worked Flyers lineup have finally been confirmed — forward Dan Carcillo will enter the lineup for James Van Riemsdyk and defenseman Oskars Bartulis will play for Ryan Parent. Michael Leighton will start in goal.
“You battle all year with these guys and you want to be in at this time of year,”Carcillo told the media on Monday. “It was hard sitting out those three games. I’ve got a lot of pent-up energy you’ll probably see released tonight.”
Dreams came true for NHL executives on Sunday when NBC announced that Saturday’s Stanley Cup Finals game 1 between the Flyers and Chicago Blackhawks was the most watched opening game of the finals in 11 years.
It has been confirmed that Chicago forward Andrew Ladd will miss game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals due to an upper body injury suffered at the end of the Wester Conference Finals against the San Jose Sharks.
“Laddy is not playing,” Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville told the media. “We do expect him to play (in the series). He’s progressing well but Kopy (Tomas Kopecky) is in tonight.”