Last night's game was a chance for the Flyers to prove something. What's that, you may ask? To prove they're back on track.
Although we can tack on another 'W' in the win column, we've naturally gone back to the inability to play with a lead and close out a win in dominating fashion. Instead, like clockwork, the 3rd period came and went leaving in its wake an entire fanbase with chewed finger nails, heart palpitations, and excessive drinking.
Once the 1st period ended, our Fly Boys were up on the Leafs 1 - 0 thanks to Adrej Meszaros' deep shot taken from the zone's point. And get this...it was another power play goal! But that's not all...
It was also a goal surrendered by the Leafs after their alternate captain, Mike Komisarek, decided to jab Dan Carcillo into the boards with a cheap shot. That infraction (only minutes into the match) costed Komisarek his ice time for the game as he was sent back to the locker room with a 5-minute major boarding penalty.
"It's a 5-minute major - he cross-checked him in the lower back from behind in a vulnerable position," Toronto coach Ron Wilson said. "Whether the guy's acting or not, he did kind of a wishbone into the boards. We would expect the same thing in return." ~ Flyers press
Carcillo laid there on the ice after his face suffered from smashing off the boards and his legs buckling in some twisted way that'd make a contortionist cringe. Nevertheless, the man stood up after a few minutes and continued to skate for the rest of regulation.
From then on I was sure the game would turn into a blood bath, but to mine and everyone's surprise there wasn't a bare fist thrown.
What there definitely was, however, were a number of questionable calls and non-calls from the officials all game long. I'm talking about that non-goal from Jeff Carter's stick late in the 1st.
It was no question a goal, but for some odd reason the official blew the play dead quicker than Mike Tyson rapes. The puck began traveling over the goal line when the ref sounded his whistle. It was quite comical, really, now that I look back on it all; They cut the head off that goal, but allowed play to continue for a handful of seconds once Boucher tented his mitt over the puck on the other end of the ice.
Well, sure. Ya can't help but laugh cause if you stay angry you're only taking minutes off your life with stress.
Anywhoo, the Flyers started off incredibly physical in the 1st, sorta showed up in the 2nd, turned me madder than a baboon in the 3rd.
Players such as Darroll Powe and James van Reimsdyke laid their opponents out all over the ice and tried to set a tone. But that tone was immediately controlled by Toronto in the final 20-minutes of the tilt.
There I sat, on the edge of my seat....ring finger bleeding from the oral destruction I had given it. My eyes bugged and my brow dampened with feverish beads of sweat. The muscles within my foot began to ache from the repeated mechanical movement as it sent my knee up & down. The volume from the television speakers backlashing from the walls around me, amplifying the intensity from the final minutes of the game.
I was ready for this to end.
Once Meszaros, Powe and Giroux iced our final potted pucks at three, it was up to the Leafs to register some sort of comeback in the 3rd.
Seriously, dip that glove of his in liquid gold, let it cool and solidify, then hang that bitch in the hall of fame.
That was, without a doubt, a goal every day of the week. Except yesterday. Boucher robbed Colby Armstrong blind with a glove save that dropped more jaws than a double-D breasted MILF walking the halls of a middle school.
Boucher ended his night stopping 27 of 29 shots on goal, and a 0.931 SV%, which if you ask me....qualifies for more than a redemption for Sunday's ragged performance against the Rangers.
And while we're on Boucher (and this is completely off topic), I firmly believe he's the bull to start in the playoffs. Just throwing that out there in case you were interested.
Toronto's rookie netminder, James Reimer, had a pretty stellar night in net regardless of the game's final score. Although he let Powe's hail mary slowly creep to the back of the net, he still stopped 30 of 33 shots fired in his direction. I always like to see rookie goalies do good.
Except Niemi. F*ck him.
Now with momentum blowing in our ship's sails and a winning streak built back up, we should continue our tenure in the win column once again when we face Atlanta tomorrow night.
Mind you, Atlanta's playing for a bottom playoff seed. And a desperate opponent is a dangerous opponent. So this "we play the entire 3rd period skating on our heels" bullshit cannot factor in against the Thrashers. We cannot afford it any longer.
And thank Christ the puck's being dropped in Philadelphia. If I had to watch one more game taking place in Atlanta (the absolute worst professional sports fanbase and town) I'd might consider switching the channel to Lifetime. (<--- Take a look at that link I've engrained into that last word. It's a screen capture. Look at the comment(s). I swear that is not me.)
Good night. Good hockey.