…Seven straight healthy scratches should make for a charged-up Ukrainian tonight in Ottawa. Count on at least one goal.
Archive for February, 2011
News broke this morning that the Flyers have claimed former Stanley Cup Champion Nick Boynton off waivers from the Chicago Blackhawks.
Boynton, 32, was a healthy scratch for Chicago’s last 22 games this season. He was in uniform last season when the ‘Hawks won their first Stanley Cup since 1961 in Philadelphia.
In other, perhaps more important news:
And now, before you freak out, Travis Hughes tells you what I was already going to say:
…Don’t freak out. This is really not a big deal. The Flyers are so pressed against the cap that moves like this are needed. As Travis says, JVR will probably be back by Thursday.
Many of you have heard the name Gabe Carimi a lot recently as an option for the Eagles with their first hand draft pick. In the last four years at the University of Wisconsin, I’ve had the pleasure of watching the lineman develop into a top-notch offensive tackle. Due to his physical prowess (6-foot-7, 314 pounds), versatility and grinding mentality, Carimi is a great fit for the struggling Philadelphia Eagles offensive line.
In his senior season, Carimi won the Outland Trophy, given to the nation’s top interior lineman. He anchored the left side of the line along with guard/center prospect John Moffitt. They led the way for the nation’s most dominant running game, led by John Clay, Monte Ball and James White. If you look at film, Carimi is always one of the first players in the secondary blocking for his backs, something the Eagles lineman always seem to fail at when blocking for LeSean McCoy.
One of the bigger concerns for the Wisconsin native is his speed. Can he handle blocking for Michael Vick, who requires speedy offensive lineman to keep up with him? Carimi is not the fastest, but he makes up for it with his intelligence and never-give-up mentality.
In his senior season alone, Carimi faced a number of NFL-ready defensive ends, all of which he had success against. For Iowa it was Adrian Clayborn and for Purdue it was Ryan Kerrigan, who are both top-5 defensive ends heading into the draft. He also matched up against Cameron Heyward from Ohio State, ranked as a top-8 defensive end. In his junior season, he was forced to contain current Eagle and then Michigan standout Brandon Graham. Case point: he has the experience against NFL-ready defensive linemen and he has had success against all of them.
During the Senior Bowl, Carimi also tried out left guard. He said he would be willing to make the conversion to the next level, which might as well be music to the ears of Howie Roseman. For an Eagles offensive line that may lost Nick Cole and Max Jean-Gilles to free agency, getting a top-tier offensive lineman is a must.
The combination of his experience as the best run-blocking offensive lineman in the country with his work ethic and willingness to convert to guard if need be, Gabe Carimi is the right fit for the Eagles. If he happens to fall to the Eagles in the 20’s of the first round, then I think it is a great pick considering the struggles the Eagles have faced at that position. Call me biased, but he certainly was fun to watch at Wisconsin.
Watch Carimi (#68) match up with Adrian Clayborn (#94) on the left side of the O-line
Carimi (#68) vs. Cameron Heyward (#97)
Both videos courtesy of the great MrFlyerGuy
…I’m beginning to dislike Frans Nielsen more and more.
…Meszaros’ goal celebrations are, by far, amongst the best on the team.
…It’s funny: I was just texting with a friend about the Flyers yesterday and I told them that I really haven’t liked their style of play at all since the All-Star Break. The team just seems to be coasting at times, and not playing the full 60 minutes that got them to where they are at the moment. It’s two fold: winning games is a good thing, but winning games when you’re not playing your best could lead to the developments of some bad habits. The Flyers have started to show that being the case, as they’ve slowly become 1) lackadaisical in the defensive zone and 2) somewhat scoring challenged.
Hopefully Homer can lay into ‘em a bit and get them back to playing Flyers hockey. Of course, in the end, they are still getting points, which has to make you wonder where they’d be if they were all in the focused mindset.
…It’s still February – this topic hasn’t even crossed my mind. However, Panotch makes some valid points on behalf of Boosh, most notably that his puck handling skills are FAR superior to that of Sergei Bobrovsky. In fact, Kimmo Timonen and Matt Carle both commented that they are able to jump-start their offense more and break out easier when Boosh is in net simply because he can get the puck settled and to them quicker than Bob can.
Obviously, there are intangibles and reasons as to why Bob has struggled with it: bigger ice surface in the KHL, goaltenders handling the puck isn’t nearly as common, etc. Still, he’ll need to improve upon that if he wants the nod over Boosh come playoff time. Personally, I haven’t made up my mind yet, and I really don’t care – both of these guys have been legit this season and I’ll be fine with whoever is in net.
Courtesy of my main man for videos, MrFlyerGuy
…And it begins. Gustafsson is a higher-rated prospect in the Flyers’ system, but I doubt he’ll see any action if OD and Pronger can both go. Then again, it’s Ottawa, and as a team you can kind of afford to play the youngster, get his feet wet, and let either Pronger or OD rest.
Of course, if Gustafsson shows the Flyers he can play, then there’s no reason to make a trade. That’s always a good thing.
…Hear that? That’s all of Philadelphia breathing a sigh of relief that Chris Pronger’s injury isn’t too serious and that the future Hall of Famer more than likely won’t even miss a game.
I agree with Seravalli: the way the injuries have come at the Flyers the last week, there is a need for another defenseman, if for nothing else than insurance purposes. However, I’m not so sure Adam Foote is the answer. Sure, as Frank points out, he’s cheap and a proven winner. However, he’s also 39 years old and has scarcely been healthy this entire season. How would he hold up for the playoffs? Would he even be healthy enough to make it to the playoffs? It’s a big risk, but nothing is out of the realm of possibility. Especially if all it costs Homer is a late-round pick.
Tags: Ben Francisco, Carlos Ruiz, Chase Utley, D. Naylor, Domonic Brown, Eddie Bonine, Florida State Seminoles, Jimmy Rollins, Juan Perez, Justin De Fratus, Michael Schwimer, Mike Stutes, Pete Orr, Philadelphia Phillies, Placido Polanco, Raul Ibanez, Ryan Howard, Scott Mathieson, Shane Victorino, Wilson Valdez
As the Phillies take part in their traditional spring training opener with their bitter rival that is the Florida State Seminoles, here is their first official lineup of the 2011 season.
Victorino CF, Polanco 2B, Ibanez DH, Howard 1B, Francisco LF, D. Brown RF, Ruiz C, Orr 2B, Valdez SS
Notable Absences: SS Rollins, 2B Utley
Starting Pitcher: D. Naylor
Bullpen: E. Bonine, J. Perez, J. De Fratus, M. Stutes, M. Schwimer, S. Mathieson