Nov 222010
 
Canadiens rookie P.K. Subban

Canadiens rookie P.K. Subban

November 22:

Philadelphia Flyers news and stories from around the web…

Flyers await chatty Montreal rookie

November 22 Camden Courier-Post:

“When Flyers captain Mike Richards and Montreal Canadiens rookie P.K. Subban last saw one another six days ago, they were being hauled off the Bell Centre ice like a pair of angry schoolboys.

But the verbal war between the two forwards did not end there. Hours after the game, Richards went on a Montreal radio station and called out Subban, saying he showed no respect for his opponents and would be put in his place if he did not wise up.

“Hopefully, someone on their team addresses it,” Richards said. “Because, I’m not saying I’m going to do it, but something might happen to him if he continues to be that cocky.”

Tonight at the Wells Fargo Center, all eyes — and ears — will be on the 21-year-old Toronto native, who shortened his given name of Parnell Karl to P.K.

Will he try to settle the score with Richards? Will he become a target of the Flyers, who will be looking to avenge a 3-0 defeat in Montreal last Tuesday night?

“Usually, when there’s a lot of talk, not much happens,” Flyers center Danny Briere said. “A lot of times, all the talking is done before, and you get on the ice and it is all behind you. You know it’s time to play hockey. I expect the same thing to happen (tonight).”

Evidently, Richards is not the only person in hockey who believes Subban may be a little too big for his britches.

During his Coach’s Corner segment Saturday night, outspoken hockey analyst Don Cherry backed up Richards’ comments, saying Subban has been talking trash since he can remember.

“He started this nonsense when he was in Hamilton (of the American Hockey League),” Cherry said. “There’s a difference of being cocky — and I love cocky guys — and being disrespectful. He doesn’t have to play like this.

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Boucher back in net tonight for Flyers

November 22 Philadelphia Inquirer:

“If you are trying to get a handle on the Flyers‘ goaltending situation: quit while you’re ahead.

Even after sitting out for 5 of the Flyers‘ last 6 periods, Peter Laviolette will not turn to Sergei Bobrovsky in net tonight against the Northeast division leading Canadiens tonight at the Wells Fargo Center.

Brian Boucher, instead, will make his second straight start.

Boucher earned a victory of the league-leading Washington Capitals on Saturday night the hard way, after the Flyers blew a 3-1 third period lead with a late power play goal against. He turned aside Nicklas Backstrom, Alex Ovechkin and Alex Semin in succession.

Boucher is 2-3-1 with a 2.98 goals against-average and an .884 save percentage.

Laviolette said last Thursday that he was not concerned with Bobrovsky’s fatigue level, despite the fact that the 22-year-old rookie told a Russian-language news outlet that he was tired. Bobrovsky made 12 straight starts before Saturday.

Bobrovsky has never appeared in more than 35 games in a season. He received some extra tutelage from goaltending coach Jeff Reese after practice on Sunday. Through 16 starts, Bobrovsky is 11-3-1 with a .925 save percentage and a 2.29 goals against-average.”

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So far, Flyers have found the right mix

November 22 Philadelphia Daily News columnist Frank Seravalli:

“The Flyers have passed the quarter pole of the season. As they stalk the pace for the points lead in the NHL, it’s hard to not consider them one of the elite thoroughbreds in the pack.

With a win tonight, the Flyers will tie for the league lead in points. They are on pace to finish with a 51-23-8 record, which would give them their first 50-win season since 1985-86 and put them in sniffing distance of their first President’s Trophy in franchise history.

They have proven that they can skate with the top teams – heading to overtime twice already with Washington, the incumbent holder of the trophy for the league’s best regular-season record.

But let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

As Braydon Coburn said, they don’t dish out any medals for the best team through the first 20 games of the season. Washington would even tell you that a trophy for the best regular-season record doesn’t mean much. The Caps surely would trade their trophy for a Game 7 win in any of the last three postseasons.

“We always have high expectations for this team,” Coburn said. “And we always want to be on top. But it’s a quarter mark. There’s no awards for being where we are right now. I think we’ve got a long ways to go.”

Right now, the signs are abundantly positive – even if the sampling size is not. Even though teams change and mature as fast as teenagers, 21 games is enough to gauge the temperature of a team that struggled through ups as high as the Rocky Mountains and depths as low as Death Valley.

Most importantly, the Flyers seem to have addressed most of the inconsistencies that plagued them throughout last season. Aside from their lifeless loss in Columbus on Oct. 25, they have put themselves in a position to win every game.

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Flyers’ Andreas Nodl goes from “nogoal” to scoring

November 22 Philadelphia Inquirer:

“It’s amazing what a shot of confidence has done for Andreas Nodl, the Flyers‘ blossoming 23-year-old winger.

In his first two stints with the Flyers, Nodl played 58 games, including the playoffs, and scored one goal. One. Fans began referring to him as Andreas Nogoal.

Not anymore.

In 11 games this season, Nodl has scored five goals – none prettier, or more important, than the spin-around backhander that gave the Flyers a 4-3 lead with 6 minutes, 7 seconds left in regulation Saturday in Washington. The goal would have been the winner if not for a late power-play score by the Capitals.

The Flyers survived, winning in a shoot-out, 5-4.

Before this season, the 6-foot-1, 198-pound Nodl wouldn’t have tried such a shot. He was timid in the offensive end, looking out of place.

But his early-season success has given him confidence, and, like Ville Leino’s in the 2010 playoffs, his creativity on the ice seems to be growing.

Nodl, who opened eyes as a penalty killer last year, said he was “a lot more comfortable” than last season. “The playoffs helped me out a lot last year. Coach really believes in me, and for a young player that’s huge,” he said after Sunday’s practice in Voorhees.

The Flyers drafted the Austrian in the second round in 2006. His emergence has caused coach Peter Laviollete to play him on a line centered by captain Mike Richards.

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