Lately, Philadelphia seems to just have it out for Montreal.
While also leading the Canadiens, 3-1, in the Eastern Conference Finals, practically putting to rest Canada’s lone hope for a Stanley Cup, Philly may have one-upped Montreal, and Canada, once more.
According to Swedish historians, new evidence has been found that suggests that Canada may not be the natural North American birthplace of hockey, and that it may have originated in Philadelphia.
After much speculation from the media and denial from general manager Paul Holmgren, it is official: Flyers forwards Ian Laperriere and Jeff Carter will both be activated for the Eastern Conference Finals game 4 against the Montreal Canadiens today at the Bell Center. The Flyers lead the series 2-1.
Just when the Flyers needed it most, they are set to receive an emotional boost.
After missing 10 post season games with a brain injury, Flyers forward and emotional leader Ian Laperriere, is will be activated predicted to make his Eastern Conference Finals debut on Saturday in a crucial game 4 match up against the Montreal Canadiens. The Flyers lead the series 2-1.
The team has been especially tight-lipped about Laperriere’s return, keeping the usually talkative and open veteran from talking to the media after practice. The Flyers have yet to write anything in stone.
Laperriere, 36, practiced on a line with Blair Betts and Darroll Powe on Friday in Montreal. It marked the first time since suffering the brain contusion in game 5 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals against the New Jersey Devils that Laperriere skated on a game-simulated line. If activated, Andreas Nodl would be the odd-man out.
The hard-hitting Montreal native, who racked up 11 hits in just five playoff games, is just what the doctor ordered for Philly, which lost game 3 by a lopsided 5-1 count.
Even after getting their nose bloodied in a 5-1 loss to the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Center on Thursday in game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals, the Flyers have reason to be optimistic about a turn around in game 4.
And that reason is easy — they are not happy.
“It’s one game. They caught up to us,” said tight-lipped Flyers coach Peter Laviolette, whose team still leads the series 2-1. “We will be better next game.”
As reported by Habsinsideout.com, Montreal Canadiens defenseman Ryan O’Byrne has been inserted into the line up for game 3 tonight at the Bell Center.
O’Byrne, 25, enters the active roster with the mission of using his 6-foot-6, 230 lbs. frame to counter the Flyers’ crease presence, especially on the power play, which has been responsible for most of Philadelphia’s nine goals in the series.
“I think I can add a lot to this series and I’m going take advantage of this opportunity and run with it,” O’Byrne told the media.
Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America
The magical Montreal Canadiens are bewildered.
After dropping games one and two, 6-0 and 3-0, to the seventh-seeded Flyers in the Eastern Conference Finals, the hockey world is wondering what went suddenly wrong with the same eighth-seeded team that dispatched the potent Washington Capitals and experienced Pittsburgh Penguins in consecutive rounds.
Well, according to Montreal’s playoff statistics the answer is easy — the Flyers are simply out-Habbing the Habs.
According to CSNPhilly.com’s John Boruk, Flyers’ center Jeff Carter is “hoping” to resume skating on Monday. If so, he is expected to be questionable for game 2 on Tuesday and a game-time decision for game 3 on Thursday. The report is unconfirmed by the team and is being denied.
It is official: Montreal Canadiens’ defenseman Andrei Markov will not be available to play at any point in the Eastern Conference Finals.
The Canadiens top blue liner, Markov, 31, practiced with the team on Friday and was reported to be eying a return to game action after suffering what was expected to be a season ending knee injury in game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
However, Markov experienced pain after his on-ice workouts and despite wearing a brace on his injured right leg, was deemed not healthy enough to play.
According to CSNPhilly.com, Flyers’ forward Ian Laperriere was back on the ice during Sunday’s morning skate. It marks the first time he has skated with the team since suffering a concussion and brain contusion in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals against the New Jersey Devils.
“It felt good,” Laperriere told Sarah Baicker. “I feel fine.”
When anyone asks Montreal defenseman Hal Gill about the Flyers, he gives a nice lengthy answer.
The most recent flaming of Philadelphia from the mouth of the 6-foot-7, 250 lbs. blue liner came on Saturday, when he was asked about facing the Flyers –his team’s Eastern Conference Final opponent.
“It’s easy to hate the Flyers,” Gill told TSN “They’ve been the Broad Street Bullies, their fans are loud and obnoxious.
“If you’re from Philly that’s great, if you’re not — you hate them. It’s fun to hate the Flyers, just like it’s fun for them to hate our fans and our team. It should be a good series as far as hate goes.”