I am going to break this down into three parts: 1) Flyers 2) NHL 3) Non-Hockey.
25 points and at Thanksgiving
Who saw that coming?
- natch. Mr. Everything. 2nd on the team in scoring (23pts), leading in goal production (11), 5th on the team in +/-, tied with Coburn and Hartnell for non-combatant PIM with 26, 2nd on the team in PP goals (3), leader in Game Winning Goals with 3 and in shots taken with 58.
Meet your next Flyers Captain...Nuff Said.
It would be a crime if this guy does not make the All-Star Team
- Tied for 3rd in the league in wins with 11, 5th best in the NHL in Save Percentage at 0.928 and tied for 4th in shutouts with 2. Without him, the Flyers would not have a prayer of being two points out of first on Turkey Day.
2 Empty Net Goals
- Scottie Hartnell
- way to go my man! Why score them the normal way? Wait 'till they pull the netminder, then let loose.
- Way to go Danny Briere
vs Carolina! Such a pretty move on his last goal, skating by three and a half defenders and roofing a shot "where mama hides the cookies." He had outstanding jump in his skates in the third period and shown that he has all the tools to electrify on a nightly basis.
- showing the courage to shuffle the lines to inspire the team and individuals to perform at a high level.
- GM of the Year. Put this team together during the latter stages of last year's debacle and had one of the most amazing off-seasons in Flyers history. No one dared dream the team he assembled would be fighting for the top spot in the Atlantic at the quarter post. No doubt about it - Homer for GM of the Year.
- As much as other might get the brighter lights, nobody is as integral a part of the team's success as #21. Jason Smith has blocked 61 shots thus far - good for 4th highest in the league this season - and is among the team leaders for penalty minutes for non-pugilists. What does not show on the score sheet is how smart Smith is in his defensive play. He is the perfect choice to wear the "C" this year.
- Leads all defensemen in scoring with 13 points and is 4th on the team overall, leads in Average Time on Ice at nearly 25 minutes per contest and posted 7 points in the last 5 games. The top pairing could not be making Paul Holmgren more pleased than what they have shown in the first 20 games.
Beam me up Scotties
are just fun to watch. They both play a high energy game that makes is very hard not to root for them. Those are the kind of guys that can help carry a team through a long 82 game season.
The Kids are Alright
- Kukkonen (26), Coburn (22) and Jones (26)
These three young players are playing huge minutes in all situations and proving themselves worthy. Between them, they have 16 points, are a +16 and have 63 penalty minutes. More importantly, with the inclusion of Ryan Parent, they are the core of the Flyers defense for years to come.
There is much to be thankful for as a Flyers fan.
As a not-so-side sidenote - I am very thankful for HockeyBuzz. I still maintain that there is no other place like it on the net or anywhere else.
Thanks for reading...