Considered one of the NHL’s leading injury reserves for the All-Star Game in Ottawa on Jan. 29, Flyers forward Scott Hartnell could still be on the outside looking in despite open spots.
With injuries to selected All-Stars, Minnesota Wild’s Mikko Koivu and Dallas Stars’ Jamie Benn, Hartnell, who is having a career season with 19 goals and 19 assists in 43 games, might still be behind unheralded but buzz-worthy Phoenix Coyotes forward Radim Vrbata, who has 22 goals and 15 assists in 45 games.
Helping Vrbata jump on the All-Star map is his three goals and assist in his last three games.
“There’s no directive to replace a Wild player with another unless he’s a worthy candidate,” said Wild beat reporter Michael Russo. “So I’m not so sure the Wild will have a representative anymore. I’d think Radim Vrbata gets the call or Scottie Hartnell.”
Another option to consider is the promotion of another Wild player in Koivu’s wake. Winger and former Senator Dany Heatley has been tagged as the only other consideration with 13 goals and 17 assists in 45 games. The move would also provide valuable drama to an otherwise drama-less event, as Heatley demanded a trade out of Ottawa in late 2009, causing immense bad blood with the city and its fans.
Florida Panthers forward Kris Versteeg could also be a name on the table, with 17 goals and 22 assists in 42 games.
It took a spear to a sensitive area of Ottawa Senators forward Kyle Turris and cross check to the head of Flyers center Danny Briere to set the stage for the unlikeliest of fights.
With less than two minutes left in the second period on Saturday afternoon at the Wells Fargo Center and with the game tied at one between the Senators and Flyers, immediately off the faceoff, Briere and Turris agreed to drop the gloves and settle a dispute.
Read More at Philly Sports Daily
Mike Richards hasn’t exactly had a stellar season.
Despite amassing 65 points in 79 games, the 26-year old has appeared closer to being the Flyers’ problem rather than their solution during the late-season plummet. His sporadic production and even more sporadic physical effort had many wondering what type of leadership the quiet captain was providing. If not off the ice, where?
But on Tuesday night, something changed.
Midway through the third period of Tuesday’s 5-2 loss to the Ottawa Senators at Scotiabank Place, the Flyers officially hit rock bottom. Moments after the Senators took a two-goal lead on a power play goal from Jason Spezza, the home squad played keep away in the Flyers’ zone for what seemed like minutes, toying with what appeared to be a broken junior varsity team.
The reaction from the Flyers was telling but far from surprising.
Sorry Ottawa, but Chris Pronger is set to make his return on Thursday.
After missing nearly five weeks with a broken right foot that required surgery, the defenseman will make his return to the lineup when the red-hot Flyers face the Senators at the Wells Fargo Center.
Pronger, 36, has admitted that isn’t one hundred-percent, but is well enough to contribute at a high level.
“Hopefully I can get back to where I was when I got hurt,” Pronger told ESPN.
So do the Flyers, not that they need it.
According to TSN, the Flyers have acquired Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Andrej Meszaros for a second round pick in the 2012 NHL entry draft.
After 17 years, one of the game’s toughest and most respected warriors has decided to hang up his skates.
“This summer, as I was training and working out, I just didn’t feel it. It’s just time to take on something new,” Jason Smith told the Ottawa Sun on Wednesday. “I thought about it quite a while. Not like I flipped a coin and made a decision. It’s time to move on.”