Thoughts on the Flyers, the NHL, and ice hockey on the planet Earth
Author's note: I've been wanting to start a blog here for quite some time so I'm going to take a shot. The Flyers will be my main focus, but I'm interested in the game itself and all things hockey, so I hope anyone who is a hockey fan will find something of interest within these pages.
On Penguins @ Flyers (12.13.08)...
*Where were the Penguins yesterday? The Flyers played well, but the Penguins appeared pretty disinterested for large stretches of the game. It was almost like the Flyers kept waiting for a counter punch that never came. I know the season is a marathon, but how can you not get up for a divisional game against a heated rival who is tied with you in the standings?
*Does anyone else think the Penguins really miss the physical play of Georges Laraque and Gary Roberts, and to a lesser extent Ryan Malone? I didn't see much swagger from the visitors yesterday. Nothing against Matt Cooke and Eric Goddard, but the intimidation factor just isn't there.
*Mike Knuble continues to have an outstanding first half. Special Teams are making the Flyers go right now and Knuble is a big part of that. His future with this team will be a good discussion for the rest of this season sans a contract extension.
On Bob Clarke and the 2003 draft...
*Clarke takes a lot of heat from Flyers fans over his tenure as the GM of the team, some richly deserved. But I rarely hear Clarke get much credit for pulling the trigger on the selections of Jeff Carter and Mike Richards back at the 2003 entry draft. It could be argued that Paul Holmgren had as much if not more to do with those selections than Clarke, but Clarke was the GM and thus ultimately responsible for the success or failure of the picks. So here you go Bob - credit where credit is due.
*According to Hockeydb.com, only one player picked in the 1st round of the 2003 draft has yet to play a single game in the NHL regular season - Hugh Jessman, picked 12th by the Rangers.
*One last 2003 draft question for the armchair GMs out there - In between the picks that netted the Flyers Carter and Richards, two other Centers were drafted who have put up very similar stats - Zach Parise (17th pick) and Ryan Getzlaf (19th pick). Knowing what we all know now, would you rather have Carter and Richards or Parise and Getzlaf? Post replies in the comments section.