Hats off to the Flyers

Heading into the Olympic Break, the Flyers looked to finish strong.  Led by Danny Briere and his hattrick, they finished with a 6-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens.  With the win, they swept the home and home with the Canadiens, giving them two home and home sweeps in the week (New Jersey earlier this week).  Briere opened the scoring in the first period, followed by Mike Richards finding a wide open net on the power play.  Jeff Carter notched his team leading 27th goal a few minutes later to give the Flyers a 3-0 heading into the first. 

The Canadiens answered back when Brian Gionta scored on the power play to the cut the lead to 3-1, but Flyers center Blair Betts scored a short handed breakaway goal a couple minutes later.  Danny Briere added his second goal of the game with a few seconds left in the second period.  Canadiens goalie Jaroslav Halak allowed five goals on 17 Flyer shots, and was replaced by Carey Price to start the third period.

Another power play goal by the Canadiens, this time by Scott Gomez, cut the lead to 5-2.  Later in the third, Danny Briere had a breakaway but was knocked down by Ryan O’Byrne.  Jeff Carter almost scored on the rebound before a penalty shot was awarded.  Briere deked out Price on the penalty shot to give him his second career Flyers hattrick (fourth career).  The boos rained down from the fans of the Bell Centre, as he was also named first star.

Canadien fans continue to boo Briere because he spurned their offer while he was a free agent.  Briere now has 6 goals, 5 assists in 13 games (including playoffs) against the Canadiens since signing with the Flyers.

Carter is now 11th in the league in goals, after scoring 11 goals in the Flyers’ last 14 games.  Carter is now on pace for 37 goals, down from his 46 goals last year, but still an impressive number considering the scoring slump by the team in December.

The Flyers now sit in sixth place, with two points between them and 7th place Boston.  Montreal dropped to 8th with the two losses to the Flyers.  The Flyers are 10 points behind division leading New Jersey (in 2nd) with 22 games to go.


The bad blood from Friday night only took four seconds to spill over as Ian Laperriere took on Canadiens defenseman Ryan O’Byrne.  However, anyone expecting anything else to happen was surely disappointed as that was the only major fireworks of the night.  Laperriere took care of O’Byrne and set the tone for the Flyers for the night.


The men’s hockey portion of the Olympics start Tuesday, and it should be an exciting tournament.  We still don’t know if Jeff Carter will participate; we should find that out tomorrow when the rosters are turned in.  Team USA kicks their schedule off against Switzerland; Team Canada (with Mike Richards and Chris Pronger) take on former Flyer Ole-Kristian Tollefsen’s Norway team.  The final match of the day pits Team Russia against Oskar Bartulis’ Latvia team.


The NHL announced its’ top 20 selling jerseys for the season, and four Flyers made the list.  The list includes all home, away, alternate and Winter Classic jerseys, which is shown with three Boston Bruins also making the list.  Mike Richards is at #5, Chris Pronger comes in at #15 and Jeff Carter has the #18 best selling jersey.  Claude Giroux rounded out the top 20, but he is the only guy on the list who needs to have his jersey custom ordered, which makes his inclusion that much more impressive.


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