It's that time of year again, when the Flyers and the Minnesota Wild meet up for the annual Vandelay Industries Festivus Feats of Strength™. So, did the Flyers do well tonight? All signs point to YES.
The Flyers came out in the first period like they were the Moops and the ice was 8th century Spain. Consider this -- halfway through the period, the Flyers had already double-dipped the scoreboard, while Minnesota had failed to register a single shot. Those goals -- registered by Sean Couturier and Claude Giroux -- made it look like the Flyers were truly masters of their domain.
Well, John-John must have come along, because Marco Scandella was able to slip one past the goalie on Minnesota's second shot of the game. A few minutes later, Nino Neiderreiter had a pretty decent chance right in front of Ray Emery, but he stopped short of getting it into the net.
Come to think of it, the minute the Flyers scored that second goal they suffered from some massive shrinkage. Minnesota was able to get sustained zone pressure, drew a penalty, yada yada yada, but the Flyers were able to hold on and keep the score at 2-1.
The Minnesota Momentum™ continued immediately into the second period, after the refs made a totally baldist call on Nicklas Grossmann for maybe, probably boarding Jason Pominville. I'm sure Grossmann tried to apologize, but as far as Pominville was concerned, he could stuff his sorries in a sack.
The Wild didn't convert on that power play, but they did on the next one, which evened the score at 2-2. After a pretty impressive start to the game, the Flyers' prognosis was starting to look pretty negative.
Luckily, Wayne Simmonds broke out the man hands and put some balm on the Flyers' wounds, giving them a lead to end the (Co)stanza.
Shortly into the the third period, Zach Parise scored, but the call was waved off since the net had become dislodged before the puck passed the line. Wild coach Mike Yeo looked pretty angry about that no goal call, like an old man trying to send soup back at a deli. But sucks to be him, because not only did the Wild not get that goal, but the Flyers also followed up with a very real and spectacular goal by one Vinny Lecavalier (LOL).
Yeo was getting upset throughout the entire third, especially when the second Wild goal of the period was called off. Whatever, sucks to be him, especially considering the Flyers ended the game winning 5-2.
Here are some of Al's Super Deep Thoughts:
- I know there have been a lot of grievances to air about the Flyers lately, but holy hell has the fourth line looked good lately. Now, that may have to do more with the fact that Zac Rinaldo isn't in the lineup than anything else (not that there's anything wrong with that).
- And speaking of the fourth line, what happened to Vincent Lecavalier? It's like he realized every decision he's made in his entire life has been wrong, and now he's assuming every instinct he has is wrong and is instead going with the opposite.
- For a minute there, I thought the Couturier goal was actually tipped in by RJ Umberger. And then I realized that I am Al, Lord of the Idiots.
- The Flyers sure took a lot of penalties tonight. Halfway into the second period they were already on their fourth short-handed situation. None of those penalties were really the Flyers fault (remember, it's not a lie if you believe it), and I called the jerk store -- apparently they are running out of refs. Regardless, maybe a bit more discipline would bring us some serenity now…
- …but to be honest, aside from surrendering a power play goal the Flyers penalty kill looked decent enough tonight. That's a nice change of pace, considering lately it's been like looking into the sun -- you don't stare at it. It's too risky. You get a sense of it, then you look away.
- Claude Giroux and Jake Voracek continue to be two of the best players to watch in the NHL. I seriously love watching those guys take the ice. They're pretty much like Zac Rinaldo and Jay Rosehill, only successful.
- I was forced to watch the Minnesota feed tonight, where Bob Kurtz (the Wild's play by play guy) kept referring to Michael Raffl as "Raffi." You know, the bananaphone guy.
Comment of the night:
" Assman, Jerry. I'm Cosmo Kramer, the Assman!"