February 8, 2013 |
Flyers right wing Wayne Simmonds was wearing a yellow jersey with the hope it will soon turn orange. Simmonds participated at his first practice Wednesday since suffering a concussion during Friday's 3-2 loss in Washington. The yellow jersey signals no contact. Simmonds skated freely at the Skate Zone in Voorhees and was optimistic afterward. "I felt fine," he said. Whether it's fine enough to return to action is in the hands of the team's medical staff. What is important to Simmonds is that he has skated twice since the injury, and both times he came away encouraged.
February 4, 2013 |
Is it too early for the Flyers to start targeting players who would upgrade their sad-sack offense? In a normal 82-game season, probably. In a lockout-shortened 48-game season, no. The Flyers have played only nine games, but that accounts for almost 20 percent of the abbreviated season. Heading into Saturday night's game against Carolina, the Flyers had two goals or fewer in seven of their first eight games. They had a total of seven in their six losses. Several unrestricted free agents this summer will draw the Flyers' attention, but those same players may be available in trades before then.
January 29, 2013 |
Mucking and grinding . . . WHEN SCOTT HARTNELL went under the knife on Friday to repair his fractured left big toe, he joined a long list of Flyers to undergo a similar procedure as a result of a blocked shot. From Simon Gagne and Chris Pronger to Jeff Carter, Brayden Schenn and James van Riemsdyk, the Flyers have had quite a few unlucky breaks. They have affected forwards and defensemen equally? Are protective, plastic shields for skates an option to keep the Flyers just a little more healthy in the shortened season?
January 10, 2013 |
WHENEVER THIS salvaged (or savage) NHL season finally gets under way, after the votes are counted and the signatures dry on the contracts, the Flyers should name Claude Giroux the 19th captain in franchise history. Giroux is young. He turns 25 on Saturday, about the time training camp will open. He is the face of the Flyers. He is quickly becoming one of the most electrifying players in the league. He is well-respected and well-liked in the Flyers dressing room. And he will bring some much-needed stability to a leadership position which has changed more jerseys (six)
October 19, 2012 |
IMAGINE, FOR a second that the NHL's season is a $3.3 billion pound anvil teetering on the edge of a cliff, having been pushed halfway out there by commissioner Gary Bettman. On Thursday, NHL Players' Association executive director Donald Fehr has a magnificent chance to pull the season back from the brink, and finally begin negotiating toward a resolution of this disgusting labor dispute. After the NHL swallowed its pride Tuesday and put on the table what looks like a last-ditch effort to play an 82-game season, Fehr was left with two choices when the two sides sit down for another bargaining session Thursday in Toronto: 1. Use the league's honest-to-goodness proposal as a starting point.
August 15, 2012 |
The Flyers, not quite defenseless but seemingly moving toward that distinction, will be without yet another blue-liner when the NHL season is scheduled to begin in October. General manager Paul Holmgren confirmed Monday that the team's already shallow pool of defensemen will be minus Andreas Lilja, who underwent surgery in his native Sweden late last month to correct a degenerative condition in his left hip. Lilja, 37, won't return until late October or early November at the earliest, according to Holmgren.
July 20, 2012
As the Flyers await a puff of smoke from Nashville - white means they get Shea Weber, black means he remains a Predator - here's something to think about. Back in December, Weber took a blow to the head. He was expected to return for the next game, but didn't feel right during a skate. He wound up missing four games with a concussion. This is worth bringing up for reasons other than bumming out Flyers fans. The team's interest in Weber is high enough to inspire a $110 million offer sheet because the Flyers' own shutdown defenseman, Chris Pronger, apparently had his career ended by a concussion last season.
June 22, 2012 |
CHRIS PRONGER'S name came up again on Monday, at Paul Holmgren's predraft media availability, the same way it always comes up. Those asking about him seek an update, maybe in search of a sliver of hope that Pronger's career might be able to resume following concussionlike symptoms that began after he took a stick to the eye last October. The only problem is that Holmgren — like any doctor who has treated concussionlike symptoms — has no firm answer. No person, not even Pronger, has an answer as to his status for next season.
May 11, 2012 |
MATT CARLE kept his head down, carrying a bag of ice to melt away pain from a lingering, undisclosed injury. Tuesday night's Game 5 could have been Carle's last game in a Flyers uniform. Carle, 27, one of the Flyers' most steady and underrated defensemen, finished off his 4-year, $13.75 million deal this spring. He is set to become an unrestricted free agent on July 1. Due to salary-cap tagging restraints, restricting teams from exceeding this year's cap figure before next year's number is announced, the Flyers cannot possibly sign Carle before July 1. That means Carle's team, with Denver-based agent Kurt Overhardt, will be able to field offers from all 29 other teams when the clock strikes noon on the first day of July.