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A brief aside, and then back to this playoffs thing

In a pretty real way, my entire adult life has been highlighted by September 11, 2001.

I was in seventh grade (yeah, really) on that day, meaning that I don't really remember a time when I didn't have to take my shoes off at the airport or throw my water bottle away before walking through a security checkpoint or a time when that ticker on the bottom of CNN didn't tell me every little annoying detail of the day's news. (Mariah Carey had twins, by the way.) 

That's just the way life is now, and even now that Osama bin Laden, the man whose vision was carried out on 9/11 in New York, western PA and Washington D.C., is dead, those things are not likely to change. For all that's been taken away from us in the aftermath of that day, though -- taken from us by bin Laden -- we still have plenty of the things that make us who we are. 

Nothing accentuates that point more than what we're all going to do tonight. 20,000 people are going to gather in South Philadelphia to escape the rest of the world for four hours and watch a hockey game, while the rest of us will do just the same in front of a television.

We get to do it without fear and without concern for our lives, but at the same time, we get to completely blow it out of proportion and act like it's a matter of life and death. Maybe that makes us silly or incapable of prioritizing, but I think that's exactly what's so great about it all.

We all have our problems, but that we're able to focus so much of our energy on a simple game is part of what so many people were celebrating last night when we learned of the news. It's an affirmation of how we live our lives. You know, WE WIN and all of that. 

Life is pretty good for us, and with bin Laden gone, it feels a little bit better today. After the jump, let's get back to worrying about Chris Pronger's hand or whatever. 

  • Reports out of the morning skate at the WFC this morning are saying that Brian Boucher will be the starting goaltender in Game 2 tonight against the Bruins.
  • Chris Pronger didn't skate with his teammates, but CSN is reporting that he just has a head cold and that he expects to play in Game 2. He's a game-time decision. Danny Syvret and Matt Walker also took the ice for the AM skate, as did Jody Shelley and Zac Rinaldo.
  • You have to assume that the Rinaldo vs. Shelley decision in that 12th forward slot comes down to whether or not Shelley is ready to play. There have been reports that he's not up-to-speed just yet when it comes to the eye injury he suffered near the end of the regular season, and thus Rinaldo gets that spot. 
  • ... the argument can be (and should be) made that neither player is worthy of that spot in the postseason, though. I understand why Peter Laviolette wants a full complement of forwards at his disposal, but choosing a goon over somebody who can actually play hockey like Ben Holmstrom is mind-boggling to me. It's the playoffs. What's Rinaldo or Shelley really going to do?
  • The Flyers (not the players, just some caricature of William Penn in an orange jersey or something) are dumping tea into the Delaware River from the Moshulu at Penn's Landing at Noon today. So like, right now. Thoughts on this? Pretty gimmicky, if you ask me, and gimmicks usually don't even bother me.

Remember, tonight's game is on Versus, not CSN. 7:30 p.m. start time.