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Kingston, ON • Canada •
Took in the FLyers-Sens game last night. *YAWN* pre-season hockey is less than desirable. Even the kids trying to earn roster spots did themselves no favours last night.

Nycholat fit in on the Sens blueline without any problem, he is clearly ready for a roster spot. I would say it comes at the expense of Schubert. I cannot imagine any sens fans complaining about that. Up front Foligno did not look out of place but he did not do anything special either, seemed to fight the puck a bit in the offensive zone. #41 Alexander Nikulin had about the most jump with the puck off either team. He clearly has offensive imagination and when he is on the ice he is one of those players that seems to make room for his line mates. Ray Emery was rusty, beaten twice high glove side with pretty good shots. He needs more ice time.

As for the Flyers, I was anxious to see them after all the moves during the summer moves and additions. Early in the game the line of Carter-Upshall-Hartnell controlled the tempo, once the penalties started that seemed to disrupt the chemistry and flow they had. No Briere, Richards or Gagne, I understand it is pre-season but give me a break .... NOTE TO STEVENS .... if your team without these players does not have anymore to offer, MAKE SURE you dress those guys. Nice to see Derian Hatcher contributing once again, and incase anyone is wondering ask Patrick Eaves if Hatcher still has his mean streak. Late in the game Eaves knocked the stick out Hatcher's hand ... the next time Eaves got the puck on the side boards, Hatcher steam rolled him cleanly sending the Ottawa faithful into an uproar. Boucher looked good in his period and a half as well.

The HIT - let me say this first, IT WAS NOT A CLEAN HIT. With that said, it was no where near the cheap shot that Ottawa based radio talk shows were laying it out to be on the post game show. Dean Brown was calling for Downie to be made an example of, one caller thought 25 games (which would be more than Dale Hunter got for Turgeon)
and Brown thought that would be good. Mike Eastwood was on the program as well, he could clearly sense the "homer" side of Brown coming out ... and suggested that no matter what the suspension is, Ottawa fans including Brown would NOT be satisfied with it. Not clean, but it was still a hockey play. The mistake Downie made was leaving his feet, sad part is he did not need to. Momentum and the adrenalin pumping on the chance to make a huge hit, for a 20 year old kid trying to earn a roster spot got the better of him for a split second. The damage in my opinion was not the initial impact it was McAmmond hitting the glass/boards. Add to all of this the checkered past of Steve Downie and you end up with something blown out of proportion. Players need to have more respect for each other, that is nothing new, we have been talking about that for years.

On a side note, for anyone in Ontario who watches Roger's Sportsnet ... can you explain to me WHY it is okay to have in the hi-light reel Chris Neil jumping from the ice to hit someone?? If what Downie did is so wrong why are we advertising and cheering it on?
September 26, 2007 10:26 AM ET | Delete
dont you love the double standard? when someone from our team does it - its a good thing but when someone hurts one of our players then its terrible! im a flyers fan and ive got to say im sickened by the hit. it was illegeal and he should be suspended.
September 26, 2007 6:16 PM ET | Delete
decent article, except the second paragraph is SO wrongSchubert just had a 2 goal game on D. Nycholat is not as good as Richardson.Emery just got back from an injury.
September 27, 2007 3:49 PM ET | Delete
Very well done! Exactly right, I am a Flyer's fan and I feel Downie should be done for a few games not 25. Lyricsninja, yes the double standard is funny, but I think most Flyer's fans will agree with us.
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