Sunday, May 30, 2010

Flyers Fall in Game 1

Game one of the Stanley Cup Finals was a scoring slugfest. Both teams jockeying for the lead in the game. It went from 1-0 Flyers, to 1-1, to 2-1 Chicago, to 2-2, to 3-2 Flyers, and that was all in the first period. When the final horn sounded, the Flyers had lost 6-5 and are down 1-0 in the series. Michael Leighton was pulled in the second period after giving up five goals in a little over 35 minutes of play.

I'm not going to go into every goal in detail because there was so many. A positive for the Flyers was that they were getting secondary scoring from unlikely candidates. Blair Betts and Arron Asham each scored for the Flyers. Arron Asham is becoming a scoring threat because of he has a wicked and accurate slap shot.

The defense had several lapses, which resulted in turnovers, which often result in goals. Many of the goals Michael Leighton gave up weren't exactly his fault, but some he could have saved. The fact of the matter is you have to stop some of them. Five goals on twenty shots is no good for a goaltender. I think coach Peter Laviolette made the right decision to pull Leighton.

Brian Boucher, in his first game back from injury, relieved Leighton and played fairly well. He faced twelve shots and saved eleven, but that one goal was a big one. Tomas Kopecky scored the only goal of the third period, and that was the winner for the Blackhawks.

I don't think a goalie controversy should start up just yet. I think Michael Leighton deserves another start to show what he can do. If the Blackhawks have another great night against him, then maybe you switch to Boucher come game three.

Game two is critical for the Flyers. Falling down 2-0 in the series is not an option against the Blackhawks. They have a high powered offense and forced the Flyers to play to their style in game one. In game two, the Flyers need to slow the Blackhawks' offensive attack. They can do it by being physical against the Blackhawk forwards.  Game two is Monday night.

Halladay Tosses Perfect Game

Roy Halladay has thrown the 20th perfect game in Major League baseball history, the second in Phils history. Halladay dominated the Marlins to say the least, 27 up, 27 down. He struck out 11. The amazing thing is that Halladay went to three ball counts many times during the game, and every time he prevailed. Many Marlin hitters stood dumbfounded as the Halladay painted the corner with called third strikes.

The Phillies won the game 1-0, so Roy had no room for error. The run did the Phillies scored came on an error by Cameron Maybin. Maybe seeing the performance of a lifetime from Halladay will motivate the offense, which has been struggling mightily recently. 

As with most perfect games, the defense did help out Halladay. Juan Castro made several nice plays at thrid, including the one that ended the game. Wilson Valdez made a great throw from short to nail a Marlin runner on a bang-bang play. Both Castro and Valdez have performed great in the field while filling in for the regulars.

Think of how great a moment this is for Roy. For the rest of his life, he will be able to say that he pitched a perfect game. A perfect game is the ultimate one-game achievement for a pitcher. So many times, a unknown pitcher throws a no-hitter, and you'll never hear about him again. But for Halladay, his perfecto will be a footnote on his amazing career, instead of his 15 minutes of fame.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Flyers Dominate Canadiens

The Philadelphia Flyers rebounded from their weak effort in game three to blank the Canadiens 3-0 in game four. Michael Leighton logged his third shutout in four games. Chris Pronger bounced back from a poor game three to being absolutely great in today's game. It's a great win for the Flyers. Now, the Flyers are one win away from going to the Stanley Cup Finals.

The first period saw two evenly matched teams battle it out. The momentum was swinging both ways and both teams had chances to score. Nobody did score though. It was a good period as far as the Flyers were concerned. The way they were dominated in the previous game, it was a good sign that they held their own against the Canadiens at home.

In the second period, the Flyers emerged as the better team. Claude Giroux cut into the Canadiens zone, easily splitting the dumbfounded Montreal defensemen. He then made a gorgeous shot over the shoulder of Jaroslav Halak, putting the Flyers up 1-0. Giroux's play has been great in the playoffs. He is only 22, but he is already one of the best players on the Flyers.

Ville Leino scored the second goal of the period for the Flyers. Chris Pronger zapped a laser-like pass across the ice to Leino. Ville was alone with the goalie. He stopped on the dime, and wheeled the puck around Halak. That goal was started on a beautiful pass by Pronger, and ended on a equally beautiful move by Leino.

The Flyers spent much of the third period dumping the puck into the Montreal zone. That seems to be their strategy when up by two or more in the third period. And it works. The Flyers kept Montreal frustrated all day. Claude Giroux scored an empty-net goal late in the game, to officially put the game away.

The Flyers got two players back from injury today. Jeff Carter and Ian Lapierriere both played in their first game in these Eastern Conference Finals. Jeff Carter looked good. Early in the game, Carter beat a defender and then unleashed a wicked wrist shot that was saved by Halak. Lapierriere played his usual game, albeit a little less physical because of the full mask protecting his face.

The teams will now travel back to Philly for game five on Monday. They Flyers need to win just one more game out of three, and two of those are at home. I'd like to avoid the drama of a game seven in this series. The Flyers cannot assume the series is won. The know quite well after last series that any team can come back from any deficit. With that said, let's wrap this one up on Monday.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Flyers Blow Out Canadiens

The Flyers performed marvelously all around in game one of the Eastern Conference finals, shutting out the Montreal Canadiens 6-0. Yes, the Flyers dominated all game. Yes, Michael Leighton made some key saves. This game looked too good to be true. The Flyers have finally won a game handily for the first time in a long time.

This game started off on the right foot for the Flyers. About four minutes into the game, Braydon Coburn stuffed a puck home to open the scoring for the Flyers. That's all the Flyers would get in the opening period, but they were far from done.

The Flyers would erupt for three goals in the second period. James van Riemsdyk got the puck right off the faceoff and drove to the net, much to the dismay of the Montreal defensemen. He slotted the puck in the net like one would start a game of pinball. Danny Briere, again vying for playoff MVP, unleashed a slapshot right by goalie Jaroslav Halak. Simon Gagne netted a goal shortly thereafter, and that ended a nightmarish night for Halak.

Montreal coach Jacques Martin yelled "Next!" on the bench after that Gagne goal, and Carey Price emerged as the next victim for the Flyers. He managed to hold the Flyers for the rest of second period, much like a dam holds back a river. He would begin to show cracks in the third period.

The Flyers, with the game already put away, were hungry for more. Like a dog who just won't stop eating, the Flyers pounded home two goals in the third period. Scott Hartnell and Claude Giroux scored the last two goals, respectively. This game was such a demoralizing loss for the Canadiens.

The Flyers can't get caught up in the moment, though. It was just one game. The next game is a completely different animal. The Canadiens are likely to be chewed out by their coach, and will come out better next game. If not, they might be eaten alive when they get to Montreal for game three. The Flyers need to weather that early storm, and then dominate them like they did during this game.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Amazing Flyers

The Flyers have pulled off the unthinkable in Game 7 of their second round series against Boston. They have become the third team in the history of the NHL to comeback from a 3-0 series deficit and win the series. Not only that, but they came back from a three goals to win in the final game. This series will go down in history as one of the best comebacks in the history of sports.

The Bruins jumped on the Flyers early, completely dominating them throughout most of the first period. Less then fifteen minutes into the game, the Flyers were on the bad end of a 3-0 score. I thought that would discourage them, and I was disgusted with their play. Goalie Michael Leighton looked like he could have had stopped at least one of those goals. The Flyers were down but not out.

JVR (James van Riemsdyk) did get a goal back late in the first period, leaving some hope for the second period. Even still, it was a tall order to come back from two in a Game 7. The Flyers would do just that in the second period.

The Flyers came out on fire to begin the second, firing many shots on goalie Tukka Rask. Scott Hartnell, who had made some blunders in the first period, put the Flyers within one on a beautifully placed backhander over the shoulder of Rask. Then, Danny Briere showed us his one-man show, when he wrapped the puck around the net and then put it in the net.... tie game.

So it all came down to the third period. Whoever won the period would win the series. The Flyers got a power play about midway through the period, and they were not going to waste it. Simon Gagne scored the game-winner on the power play for the Flyers. Finally, the Flyers had taken a lead in the game. It was just up to them to hold it.

They did hold that score, 4-3, for the rest of the game, propelling the team into history. The only other teams in NHL history to come back from 3-0 deficit were the 1942 Toronto Maple Leafs and the 1975 New York Islanders. It is amazing when a team can when four straight games against the same team that it lost three straight to.... simply amazing.

The Flyers will now encounter the Montreal Canadiens, with the winner getting a spot in the Stanley Cup Finals. It should be a good series. The Flyers will get home ice advantage because Montreal is the #8 seed and the Flyers on the #7 seed. Imagine that. The lowest seeded teams in the conference make it to the conference finals. Expect the unexpected.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/12/10

Phils Lose in Extras: The Phillies were scheduled to play a day-night double-header today. In Game 1, Roy Halladay struggled in the first couple of innings. He did manage to pitch 6 1/3rd innings and give up only two runs, but he surrendered 10 hits. The Phillies defense did not help either. They committed 3 errors and their should have been at least one more.

The Phillies only managed three runs, and the game was tied going into the 10th. The Phillies had Howard, Werth and Ibanez due up. Howard singled. Werth hit a ground ball but reached base on a fielder's choice. Ibanez hit a ground ball double play. Miguel Olivo (5-5 in the game) lead of the bottom half of the inning with a monstrous homer off Chad Durbin for the walk-off. The scheduled night game was canceled because of weather conditions.

Phillies Stealing Signs: The Rockies have accused the Phillies of stealing their signs. The Rockies claim that Phils' bullpen coach Mick Billmeyer was looking through binoculars in the bullpen, trying to steal the Rockies signs. This is a load of crap. If you're not trying to steal signs then your not trying. Almost every team tries to steal signs. This is not a big deal.

Charlie Manuel: "We were not trying to steal signs. Would we try to steal somebody's signs? Yeah, if we can. But we don't do that. We're not going to let a guy stand up there in the bullpen with binoculars looking in. We're smarter than that."

Flyers Even Series

Just a week ago I'd never thought I'd say this words: The Flyers have tied the series 3-3 against Boston. The Flyers dominated Game 6, winning 2-1. They were winning for the whole game, and held Boston scoreless until the final minute of play. Goalie Michael Leighton played outstanding filling in for Brian Boucher. Clear your calendars for Friday night. Game 7, Flyers-Bruins in Boston, it's going be a wild one.

The Flyers jumped on the Bruins from the beginning. Mike Richards scored on a rebound about 7 minutes into the first period. That got the fans going at the Wachovia Center. Leighton held down the fort in the first. He looked really, really solid, never out of control.

In the second period, the Flyers capitalized on a chance on the power play. Danny Briere maneuvered around in the Boston zone before rifling the puck into the top corner. It was a perfect shot from Briere, who has really stepped up his game in the playoffs. The Flyers have a number of guys who step up in the postseason: Briere, Chris Pronger, and any net minder the Flyers put out there.

The Flyers looked good for most of the third period, but at the end, Boston started to get chances. The Bruins pulled their goalie late in the game. Playing with an extra skater, the Bruins' Milan Lucic stuffed one between Leighton's legs, breaking up the shutout. The Flyers did hold out one more minute for the win.

Coming back from a 3-0 deficit is quite an achievement. Not many teams in the history of sports have done it. I did not believe they could do it. Now, the focus for the Flyers must be on Game 7. They have won three straight so they have the momentum. It's just a matter of going out and doing it. We'll all be watching.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Flyer Force Game 6

Their will be a Game 6 Wednesday night in Philadelphia. That's what we know after the Flyers 4-0 victory tonight over the Boston Bruins. The Flyers dominated the Bruins in front of their home crowd. I think the last two games may give the Flyers the momentum they need going into Game 6, especially tonight. Not only did the Flyers not allow a goal, they shelled the Bruins defense for four goals.

The opening period was pretty good for the Flyers. Ville Leino got credit for a goal that I think Scott Hartnell should have been credited with. Both players were in front of the net for a rebound, and both players got their stick on it. Leino was falling backwards and shooting at the same time, but Hartnell provided the power that was needed for the goal.

So the Flyers had a 1-0 lead going into the second period. A little more than halfway through the period, Hartnell finally did get his first official goal of the playoffs. He swatted the puck out of the air and into the net on a perfect pass from Mike Richards. The Flyers finally hurt the Bruins on the power play, when Simon Gagne's wrist shot beat Tukka Rask. It was Gagne's second goal in as many games.

In the third period, Gagne again put the icing on the cake by getting the Flyers fourth goal. The game got chippy during the third period. The Bruins were clearly trying to hurt the Flyer players. They succeeded by knocking out Claude Giroux, who did not play in the final period. Also, when Mike Richards nailed Bruins star Marc Savard, Savard and a Boston goon hopped on Richards. They jumped him like a thug in an alley. They both got penalties but I think the NHL should take further action..

The Flyers did lose goaltender Brian Boucher late in the second period. Boucher apparently injured his knee when clumsy Ryan Parent fell on his leg. Boucher had to be helped off the ice. Michael Leighton, in his first game back from injury, filled in admirably for Bouch, holding onto the shutout.

The way I see it now, the Flyers probably aren't getting Boucher back. Leighton will need to step in and perform. The Flyers are one game away from a Game 7 to decide the series. They can do it, but they have to keep up the momentum and pressure. Boston has the pressure on them now, the weight of embarrassment sitting on their shoulders. Game 6 will be Wednesday night.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/9/10

Phils Edge Braves: Brad Lidge saved his first game of the season today, in the Phillies 5-3 win over Atlanta. The Phillies took two of three from the Braves in this series. Hamels went 5 innings and gave up 3 runs on 8 hits. He worked out of some jams but the Braves finally got to him in the 5th. The Braves knocked Hamels for 3 runs on 4 hits in the inning. The Phillies bullpen held up though, not giving up a hit.

Jayson Werth is continuing to pound the baseball. He hit a towering drive over the left field wall in the 3rd inning, his 7th homer of the year. Placido Polanco is starting to get his swing back also. He had 2 hits in ballgame, including a solo home run. The Phillies will head to Colorado tomorrow and play the Rockies tomorrow at 8:40pm EST.

Perfect Game: Oakland Athletics pitcher Dallas Braden threw a perfect game today. Braden faced 27 Rays and put each one of them down. This is only the 19th perfect game in MLB history. Braden also threw it against the Rays, one of the best teams in baseball. Braden was seen hugging his grandmother after the game. Sadly, Braden's mother died when he was a teenager.

Braden: "Pretty cool. I don't know what to think about it just yet. There's definitely a select group. I'd like to have a career more than today."

Go Flyers!!!!!!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/8/10

Braves Beat Phils: The Phillies managed only one run against Braves' starter Kris Melden. That run came in the 2nd inning, when Shane Victorino's RBI single scored Brian Schneider. The Phillies had trouble with runners in scoring position. For instance, in the bottom of the 4th, with 2 men on and none out, the Phillies failed to get either run home. The Phils got 9 hits against Melden but did not register a hit against the Braves bullpen.

Joe Blanton looked good right up until the 6th inning. The Braves got their first hit in the 5th and Blanton looked to be in control. One big inning did him in. In the 6th, he allowed 3 runs on 4 hits, and no home runs. Still not a bad outing for Blanton. You're not going to win with one run.

Union Crushed: Real Salt Lake, defending MLS champions, showed the Union exactly why they are champions. They dominated the Union, beating them 3-0. The Union had defense lapses. On one of the goals, a union defender watched as a Salt Lake player went past him and scored. It is tough on the Union (1-6) because they have played 6 of 7 games on the road. They did win their only home game.

Sixers Coaching Update: According to, the Sixers will meet with both Bill Laimbeer and Dan Majerle in the coming days. Laimbeer, a former Pistons star, has been very successful coaching in the WNBA. Will he be able to make the jump to the NBA? Majerle is a Phoenix Suns assistant coach. Shouldn't he be worrying about the San Antonio Spurs?

Friday, May 7, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/7/10

Moyer Pitches Shutout: Jamie Moyer pitched a 2-hit complete game shutout in today's 7-0 Phillies win. The Braves were victimized by Moyer's control and velocity. That's right, velocity (or lack thereof)! Moyer, 47, became the oldest pitcher ever to pitch a complete game shutout. It is an amazing feat.

Braves' starter Derek Lowe got crushed by the Phillies. Lowe allowed 11 hits and 7 runs in 5 innings. This is just another example of how the Phillies are pounding quality pitchers. Jayson Werth, who is on a tear, hit a 3-run home run in the bottom of the 3rd to give the Phils a 3-0 lead. The bottom of the 5th was a big inning for the Phils. Raul Ibanez and Wilson Valdez both knocked in 2 runs in the inning.

The Phillies and Braves will meet again tomorrow at 3:10pm. This game will be nationally televised on Fox. Joe Blanton will be on the mound for the Phils. Charlie Manuel will miss the game due to a personal issue.

Gagne Wins it for Flyers

A little less than 15 minutes into overtime, Simon Gagne scored to finally give the Flyers a win in this series. It was a great moment for Gagne, who is in his first game back from an injured foot. He had not played a game in this series, but he certainly delivered for the Flyers tonight at the Wachovia Center.

Mark Recchi (playoff extraordinaire) has been killing the Flyers all series. Even late in his career, Recchi (above) is still great at getting in the right position at the right time. He scored with about five minutes left in the first period to put the Bruins up 1-0. The Flyers answered before the period was over. Daniel Briere put a low shot past Boston goalie Tukka Rask.

Chris Pronger, who has been money for the Flyers in the playoffs, opened the second period with a goal. That was his fourth of the playoffs. Claude Giroux put the Flyers up by two not too long after Pronger's goal. The Bruins did narrow the lead to one before the end of the period.

Milan Lucic tied the game for the Bruins early in the third period. The Flyers had their work cut out for them. With less the 6 minutes left, Chris Pronger fired a shot that was deflected into the net by Ville Leino. That was Leino's first goal of this playoffs. The Flyers could not hold onto that one goal lead though. Mark Recchi scored from point blank range with 32 seconds left in the third period.

That's where Gagne comes in. His and Recchi's goals were very similar. Both were scored from point blank range with a lot of net in sight. So the Flyers will now travel back to Boston for a Game 5. Boston still has a commanding 3-1 series lead, but maybe this win will light a fire under the Flyers. I'll sure be rooting for them.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/6/10

Phils Take 3 of 4 From Cards: The Phillies handled the Cardinals today, beating the Cards 7-2. Actually, they handled the Cardinals all week, beating them 3 out of 4 times. Today, ace Roy Halladay pitched 7 innings, gave one earned run, and struck out 9. That effort got Halladay (6-1) his 6th win of the season. The Phillies bats made sure this game was never in doubt.

Cardinals starter Kyle Lohse was pounded from inning #1. Jayson Werth hit a 3-run home run in the first to open the scoring. Raul Ibanez crushed a high fastball into the upper deck (416 feet) in the 6th inning to put the Phils ahead 6-1. Werth had a breakout game, going 3-4 with 3 RBIs and a home run. Werth is batting .354 with 21 RBIs on the year.

The Phillies start a 3-game series with the Braves tomorrow. Jamie Moyer is pitching for the Phils, with Derek Lowe on the mound for the Braves. Game time is 7:05pm.

Robin Roberts Passes Away: Phillies Hall of Fame pitcher Robin Roberts has died at the age of 83 at his home in Florida due to natural causes. Roberts was a key player on the 1950 Whiz Kids NL pennant-winning team. He is the best right handed pitcher in Phillies history. Roberts had 6 20-win seasons. He was first in complete games (237) and second in wins (199) in the '50s.

Now I never saw Robin pitch. He was before my time, but from what I hear, this guy was one heck of a pitcher. He was a Phillies legend who will never be forgotten.

United coming to Town: One of the top soccer clubs in the world, Manchester United, will be coming to Philadelphia to play the Union in an exhibition game at the Linc. The game is scheduled for July 21rst. This is a very exciting for the Union. They have a chance to play a top European team in their first year of existence. Usually, top clubs tour America once every several years. You bet that this game will draw big crowds.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/5/10

Flyers Lose Again: It doesn't look good for our Philadelphia Flyers. The Bruins put a whippin' on the Flyers, as the 4-1 score indicates. The Flyers out shot the Bruins 35-20, but they only managed one goal against Bruins' goalie Tukka Rask. Rask really stole this game for the Bruins. He was outstanding in net tonight.

The Flyers took their only lead of the series early in the first period. Arron Asham scored that early goal for the Flyers. Less than 4 minutes later, the Bruins had themselves a 2-1 lead after goals from Blake Wheeler and Miroslav Satan. The second period went by scoreless. In the third, former Flyer Mark Recchi scored on the power play. Maybe Brian Boucher could have stopped a one of those goals, but it's too late now.

The Flyers put much more pressure on the Bruins offensively this game, but unfortunately their was a rock in the net. It will be very hard for the Flyers to come back in this series down 3-0. It would be historic if they did, but even I believe they're done.

Phils Shut Down Cards: Kyle Kendrick pitched 7 shutout innings for the Phillies in their 4-0 win over the St. Louis Cardinals. Kendrick gave up 6 innings and struck out 3. Maybe this is a sign that Kendrick is coming around, and that he can become a valuable pitcher in the rotation.

The Phillies didn't get a hit until the 4th inning, when Shane Victorino singled off Brad Penny. Placido Polanco followed that up with a home run to break the scoreless tie. Shane Victorino then homered to lead off the 6th inning. Greg Dobbs hit an RBI double in the 7th to cap the Phillies scoring.

Sixers Update: Mark Jackson's agent has informed the Sixers that his client has declined an interview for Sixers head coaching job. Jacksons agent had this to say: "It’s just not the right situation for him at this time." Well, no kidding! Why would Jackson want his first head coaching job to be with a team that stinks, draws small crowds, and has their money tied up.

According to, the Sixers are trying to schedule a meeting with former Sixer Monty Williams. Williams is an assistant coach with the Portland Trail Blazers.

Coming Tomorrow: Phillies wrap up series against Cards with a Halladay

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/4/10

Ruiz Wins Game: Carlos Ruiz hit a game-winning home run in the bottom of the 10th inning to propel the Phillies over the St. Louis Cardinals. Ruiz's blast just cleared the fences as it settled in the first row. Ruiz was mobbed at home plate and smacked in the face with pies from Shane Victorino and Greg Dobbs. Certainly a great way to send the Philly fans home with a 2-1 win.

Cole Hamels faired very well in the game. Hamels pitched 8+ innings, allowed one run, and struck out 8. Adam Wainwright was equally dominant for the Cardinals, allowing 1 in 8 innings. Carlos Ruiz drove in the only 2 runs the Phillies scored. The first RBI by Carlos came on a sacrifice fly.

Phillies Fan Tasered: On radio shows all over the country today, people debated whether security should have tasered a 17-year old who ran out onto the field. This is a complicated issue. On one hand, the security has to protect the players and coaches. There is no way to know whether the intruder has any weapons hon him.

On the other hand, the use of a taser is a bit harsh. The usual tackle does the trick. I'm going back and forth on this one. Leave a comment and let me know what you think. Another fan entered the field of play during tonight's game, but no taser was needed because he gave himself in.

Not much news today besides the Phillies game. Check out tomorrow for posts on the Flyers and Phillies games.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/3/10

Phillies Lose 6-3: In Joe Blanton's first start of the season, the Phillies let down the sold out crowd at the Bank. Big Joe pitched 6 2/3 innings, gave up 10 hits, 4 runs, and struck out 4. Not bad for a guy who hasn't started a game for the Phils since the spring. He pitched six strong innings, giving up only 1 run. He fell apart in the 7th. He gave up a homer and two hits before getting pulled in favor of Nelson Figueroa.

Nelson did not help out Big Joe. He threw a wild pitch then intentionally walked Matt Holliday to load the bases. David Freese cleared the bases with a 3-run double. Two of the runs were charged to Blanton. Figueroa gave up another run for good measure.

The Phils did hit two homers, but they were both solo shots.

Sixers Coaching Search: The Sixers are continuing to talk to potential coaching candidates. Today they met with Avery Johnson. Johnson was also in the mix last year when the job was open. The Sixers have also contacted Mark Jackson, a TV analyst who has never been a head coach in the NBA. The Sixers met with Doug Collins, who has coached in the NBA and played with the Sixers.

Sixers GM Ed Stefanski: "We had an informative meeting and open dialogue with Avery today regarding our head coaching position. His reputation as a motivator and accomplishments as a head coach in the NBA are well-known and I certainly want to thank him for taking the time to meet with us."

Coming up tomorrow: Eagles training camp update, Phillies continue series against Cardinals, and Sixers continue to search for coach.

Bruins Take 2-0 Series Lead

Lucic by rubyswoon.

The Philadelphia Flyers have dropped their second game in a row to the Boston Bruins. The only difference was tonight's game didn't require overtime. When the final horn sounded, the Flyers were on the wrong side of a 3-2 score. They will now have to come back from to games down, a very tough task to say the least.

The night started off wrong for the Flyers. Boston took a 1-0 lead a little more than five minutes into the contest. The Flyers answered back with a goal from Mike Richards to even the score before the end of the period. The Bruins again jumped out in front in the second, with a goal from Miroslav Satan. Satan is really killing the Flyers this series. Danny Briere jumped out of the penalty box late in the second period, and tied the game at two.

So the two teams went into final period tied at two. Through the first 17 minutes of the period, that's how the score remained. But the Flyers poor defense allowed Milan Lucic to score the game-winner late in the period.

I thought the Flyers would build upon their Game 1 and improve their play. That didn't happen. The Flyers defense looked sluggish and the offense couldn't keep the puck in the Boston zone. On the power play, the Flyers were simply terrible. They barely managed shots, let alone scoring chances.

The Flyers now must tie the series at home. I feel the only chance they have is if they win Games 3 and 4 at home. They can do it, but they would be much more comfortable heading back to Philly with the series 1-1.

Phillies Pound Santana

Johan Santana by Keith Allison.

The Phillies bats are awake. After Saturday's 10-0 win and last night's 11-5 win, they are more than awake. The Phillies knocked around Mets ace Johan Santana for 10 earned runs, 9 in the 4th inning. The Phillies handed Santana his worst start of his career.

The night started off bad for the Phils. Moyer gave up a 3-run homer to Met 3rd baseman David Wright. It looked like one of those nights for Moyer. The Phils counter punched with two home runs of their own in the bottom of the first, hit by Placido Polcanco and Ryan Howard.

The bottom of the 4th inning last night was one of the best innings for the Phillies' batters that I've ever seen. With 2 outs in the inning, the Phillies promptly batted around. Raul Ibanez singled in Utley for the first run of the inning. With the bases loaded, in stepped Jamie Moyer (47-year old). Santana looked like he was out of the inning. Santana threw two straight balls. That got the crowd into it. Santana looked flustered as he walked Moyer, which forced in a run.

Shane Victorino was next. He knocked a one over the wall for a grand slam. One swing of the bat, and the score goes from 5-4 Mets to 8-5 Phillies. The Phils weren't done there. Polanco singled. Chase Utley then launched a mammoth blast (422 feet). Howard then singled. Werth doubled him home... 10-5 Phillies.

Jamie Moyer got lucky last night. Had the Phillies not exploded on Johan, Moyer would have been the goat today. He needs to stop giving up homers early in the game. He allowed two homers before the 4th inning yesterday. After that, he did pitch two scoreless innings, but he needs to avoid giving up the long ball.

The Cardinals visit the bank tonight. The game is scheduled for 7:05pm, but that may be delayed and/or canceled because of major storms in the Philadelphia area. Either way, the Phillies are back in first place and it feels good

Go Flyers!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Daily Wrapup: 5/2/10

Union Lose Again: The Philadelphia Union were promptly rolled over by the LA Galaxy last night. The final score was 3-1 and the Union's record is now 1-4. The MLS' leading goal scorer, Edison  Buddle, scored two goals against the Union. By the time the whistle sounded for the end of the first half, the Union were down 3 goals and also down a man.

The Union have showed a lack of discipline all season. Stefani Miglioranzi saw the red card this time. The Union will never have a chance if they're a man down every game. One bright spot in this game was the play of 17-year old Jack McInerny. He scored his first MLS goal last night.

Mayweather outlasts Mosely: I spent a good deal of time last night trying to watch this fight online for free. Anyone who does this regularly knows that it is hard to find a good stream that won't get shut down. Usually I can find one and watch the all of the fight. Last night I only caught a little of the fight because of computer issues.

Mosely hurt Mayweather early but then Mayweather dominated the Mosely for the rest of the fight. Mayweather needs to fight Pacquiao next. I know why Mayweather didn't want Pacquiao to be his first fight back. Pacquiao is the best fighter in the world and he will be until somebody beats.

Rollins May Miss More Time: is reporting that Phillies shortstop Jimmy Rollins may miss more time than expected. It was first reported that Rollins would miss 2-4 weeks. It is now looking like Rollins may miss more than 4 weeks after several setbacks in his recovery.

Rollins: "I was jogging and I actually picked up the pace and that part didn’t bother me. But when I started shuffling and then turned around to really go, that hurt. Going to the right, that doesn’t bother me. Shuffling left and turning to run, that’s when you feel it grab."

Late Games: Tomorrow I may post about tonight's Phillies game.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Daily Roundup: 5/1/10

Scroll down to see post about Flyers game.

Phillies Crush Mets: The Phillies rebounded from last night's 9-1 loss with a 10-0 win today over the New York Metropolitans. Roy Halladay pitches a complete game shutout, his third complete game of the year. The Phillies bats may have finally come out of their lengthy slump.

Victorino had a homer and 3 RBIs. Werth, Ibanez, and Castro each drove in 2 runs. Placido Polanco was the only Phillies without a hit in the game. Polanco has really struggled since he got hit in the elbow with a pitch, which cost him to miss a couple of games. The Phillies will play tomorrow night at 8pm in the final game of this series against the Mets.

More on Ryan Madson: The broken toe that put Ryan Madson on the DL was caused by Madson kicking a chair in the hallway leading to the clubhouse. Ryan had just blown a save, and, on his way to the clubhouse, slipped down the steps. This angered him more, which led to the chair-kicking. This is a very stupid way to get injured. A veteran like Madson should know this.

Madson: "I'm frustrated. I'm embarrassed. I let down my teammates and the fans that want us to all be out there and playing hard for them. I feel terrible about that. It's the worst part."

Charlie Manuel: "He was very apologetic. I know exactly how he feels." Manuel said that he once suffered a foot injury from kicking a wall.

Borel, Super Saver Win Kentucky Derby: Jockey Calvin Borel rode Super Saver to a victory in today's Kentucky Derby. On the track at Churchill Downs was a thick mud. I think this is the most mud I've ever seen at one place at one time. But Borel fought through the mud and commanded Super Saver along the rail.

Borel has jockeyed 3 of the last 4 Kentucky Derby winners. This is no coincidence. Borel is clearly a very good jockey. Next year, I may just bet on the horse Borel is on. Hey, I would have won money three of the last four years.

Late Events: Tomorrow in my daily roundup, I may comment on the Union-Galaxy game and the Mayweather-Mosely fight.

Flyers Lose in OT

The Philadelphia Flyers have lost in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals to the Boston Bruins. When it was all over (13:52 into overtime) the Flyers had come on the short end of a 5-4 game. The Flyers fought hard after being down two goals not once, not twice, but three times. Both goalies impressed in the overtime period, but the Flyer defense fell apart in overtime

The first period was dismal for the Flyers. They gave up 2 goals, and managed just 8 shots on goal. They looked sluggish after their nine day layoff. The team was uninspired. Chris Pronger and Mike Richards really performed admirably the whole game, but the rest of the team looked terrible in the first period.

Coach Peter Laviolette on the first period: “Clearly, the first period affected us. I think from a live game situation, [the layoff] affected us. We didn’t move the puck efficiently. We didn’t seem to have our legs. When you sit for a long time you try and simulate things, with the competitiveness and the skating and the battles on the ice. It’s hard to simulate.”

In the second period, the Flyers showed much improvement. Ryan Parent scored a goal to narrow the Bruins lead to one. But the Bruins answered back with a goal by Miroslav Satan on the power play. Chris Pronger notched his third goal of these playoffs with a one-timer from the point on a power play. The Flyers were within one goal again.

The Flyers really broke out in the third period. The scoring started when David Krejci put Boston on top by a score of 4-2. All hope looked lost for the Flyers, but they moved within one when Mike Richards scored on the power play. Danny Briere has been a clutch player all playoffs, and he came up big late in the third. He weaved his way through two Bruins on his was to the goal. That goal tied the game at four.

Early in overtime, the Bruins dominated. The Flyers were tired and it showed, as the Bruins launched shot after shot on Brian Boucher. Thankfully for the Flyers, Boucher answered those early chances. The Flyers finally got it together and had a few scoring chanced on goalie Tukka Rask. It was not enough. Marc Savard, in his first game back from injury, got the game winner in front of his hometown fans. The Bruins outshot the Flyers 15-4 in the overtime period.

Chris Pronger, who seems like he doesn't leave the ice, had an outstanding game. He showed why he is one of the best defenseman in the game.

The Flyers showed remarkable resilience but, at the end of the day, they are down 1-0 in the series. The Flyers have to build on this performance for game two Monday night. If it weren't for that horrible first period, the Flyers would have won this game.