Posts for Flyers Category

The Hart of a Champion

Russ Joy - October 10, 2019

I’m not trying to start the talk radio debate about the most important position in sports. You wanna argue till you’re blue in the face that playing quarterback in THE NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE is the toughest? Have at it. I’d contend that a 1A to quarterback is standing between the pipes of 72″ x 48″ net while a disk of vulcanized rubber is propelled through the air at 90mph. I’d elevate the position’s importance in Philadelphia, where -I don’t know if you’ve heard- the Flyers haven’t had a rock-solid net minder in… [looks at records] nearly thirty years since Ron Hextall. Even then, Hextall was far from elite. The late Pelle Lindbergh aside -seeing as we’ll never know how good he truly could have been- the last great Flyers goaltender was Bernie Parent back in the 70s.

“But, Russ, the Flyers had a Vezina Trophy winner in their organization and they traded him away.”

Fair, but it was never going to work here. Ed Snider practically forced the hand of former GM Paul Holmgren to sign Ilya Bryzgalov, who flat-out refused to mentor or help a young Sergei Bobrovsky.

This isn’t a matter of Philly fans being out of their minds or blowing the goalie issue out of proportion. When we sat down with head coach Alain Vigneault and mentioned Hart, his response -amid a smirk and chuckle- was, “So I’ve been told.” That’s why Carter Hart’s performance on Wednesday night, featuring the first shutout of his NHL career, wasn’t just big. It was… humongous big. In fact, it’s the biggest thing to happen to a Philadelphia sports team in the past few months.

(Side note: Save your Kapler firing cheers for joy. The Phillies are a fundamentally flawed organization and kept the architects of a mediocre-at-best franchise in favor of cleaning house like they should’ve done. Also, the Ben Simmons three was delightful and could prove to be the most important added dimension to a Philly team this side of DeSean Jackson popping the top off an opposing defense. I digress…)

Hart didn’t just make the saves. He dominated the Devils. He embarrassed them:

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The Flyers’ New Rage Room is the Most Philadelphia Thing Ever

Russ Joy - October 9, 2019

Tonight’s the Flyers’ home opener and instead of talking about the team on the ice, we here at Crossing Broad are absolutely obsessed with the Wells Fargo Center’s newest fan experience. No, I’m not talking about the two new sports lounges with a sport betting twist, nor am I focusing in on the esports areas. Friends, we’ve reached peak Philly.

Remember all those annoying national TV references to the “jail” under Veterans Stadium? The Eagles did a pretty decent job of shedding the image of Roman Colosseum savagery, when they announced a sensory room for individuals with Autism and sensory challenges at the Linc, something that represents an excellent way for all fans to enjoy a game. The folks across the street at the Wells Fargo Center have picked up the hard-nosed, blue-collar image of the Philadelphia fan and doubled down as they’ve announced the first-ever rage room in a major professional sports arena, which they’ve dubbed “The Disassembly Room”.

You heart that? That’s the sound of Katie Nolan piecing together a longform takedown of the Philadelphia fan culture. Get ready for the onslaught of ESPN and FS1 talent taking shots at the Delaware Valley.

So what’s a rage room, you ask? Per the press release:

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BetRivers and Wells Fargo Center Will Unveil Sports Lounges at Flyers Home Opener

Russ Joy - October 8, 2019

The Flyers’ home opener is Wednesday night against the New Jersey Devils and there are changes abound at the Wells Fargo Center. We’ve previously covered the standing-room-only ticketsvideo game areas, and overall improvements to the Center, but this newest announcement should be of interest to anyone looking to enjoy a multitude of games on screens while watching the games below.

As part of “Transformation 2020“, Wells Fargo Center and BetRivers will unveil two new, high-tech lounges to coincide with the Flyers’ home opener.

Valerie Camillo, President of Business Operations for the Flyers and Wells Fargo Center, said of the new lounges:

We are thrilled to launch our partnership with SugarHouse, soon to be Rivers Casino and BetRivers.com, through these sport lounges which will undoubtedly elevate the game day experience at the Wells Fargo Center. Both spaces are stunning additions to what has already been the most transformative phase of our renovation project and we know our fans will be delighted with the design and experience.

The mentioning of SugarHouse’s transition to BetRivers is something we previously covered, as was Wells Fargo Center’s initial partnership with SugarHouse.

Per the official press release, Mattias Stetz, COO of Rush Street Interactive, the operator of the in-casino and online sportsbooks for SugarHouse, soon to be Rivers Casino Philadelphia expressed excitement:

We can’t wait for Philadelphia sports fans to experience these new sports lounges. We know how passionate this city is when it comes to sports and we took great care to make sure these lounges have everything guests need to watch and get in on the action as it’s happening.

Let’s take a look at the lounges and what they’ll feature.

BetRivers.com Sports Lounge

Wells Fargo Center Sports Lounge

The BetRivers.com Sports Lounge, located on the New City Terrace, will face the arena’s bowl, allowing fans to watch the live action below, while taking in games on a massive LED wall that measures 22-feet long by 8-feet tall. The sports lounge, occupying nearly 6,500 square feet of space, will offer an open environment for fans to take in the game while betting online through the BetRivers Pennsylvania app.

Rivers Casino Philadelphia Sports Lounge

Wells Fargo Center Sports Lounge

The Rivers Casino Philadelphia Sports Lounge, located on the Main Concourse level, is located in the completely redesigned south end of the Wells Fargo Center. This 5,680 square foot lounge will feature ten 86″ screens grouped throughout seating areas, as well as odds boards and sixteen additional 65″ monitors at the bar.

If you’re heading down to the Flyers’ home opener and happen to check out either lounge, let us know what you think.

For more Flyers coverage, check out Snow The Goalie Radio Mondays from 5-6PM on 610 ESPN Philadelphia and subscribe to Snow The Goalie: A Flyers Podcast, available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, GooglePlay, Stitcher, iHeartRadio, and wherever else you get your podcasts. Also be sure to tune into The Press Row Show as Anthony and Russ live stream during pregame and the first and second intermission breaks of every Flyers home game live from press row of the Wells Fargo Center via the Crossing Broad Facebook page and Twitter.

Snow The Goalie Radio: Oct. 7, 2019

Russ Joy - October 7, 2019

This episode of Snow The Goalie Radio aired Monday, October 7, 2019 on 610 ESPN Philadelphia.

Anthony and Russ break down the Flyers’ first win of the season, Alain Vigneault’s line combinations and defensive pairings, and what to expect against the Devils.

Please subscribe to the show ([Apple Podcasts] [Spotify] [Google Play] [iHeartRadio] [Stitcher] [RSS]), leave a 5 star review, and follow us on Twitter: @AntSanPhilly @JoyOnBroad Also be sure to tune into The Press Row Show as Anthony and Russ live stream during pregame and the first and second intermission breaks of every Flyers home game live from press row of the Wells Fargo Center via the Crossing Broad Facebook page and Twitter.

Check out the other shows on the Crossing Broad Podcast Network including: Crossing Broadcast: A Philly Sports PodcastCrossed Up: A Phillies PodcastIt’s Always Soccer in PhiladelphiaCrossing Broad FC: A Soccer Podcast, and Broad Lines: Sports Betting Podcast.

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Snow The Goalie is Heading to 610 ESPN Philadelphia

Russ Joy - October 6, 2019

The Flyers’ home opener is just days away and our Flyers coverage is taking yet another step toward providing the best content anywhere. Beginning this Monday, October 7, our Flyers podcast Snow The Goalie will be taking to the 610 ESPN Philadelphia airwaves for a weekly show. The podcast, hosted by Anthony SanFilippo and Russ Joy, has been a weekly must-listen for fans of the Orange & Black since its premiere in April 2018. Some of the more notable episodes have featured interviews with head coach Alain Vigneault, former team president Paul Holmgren, senior advisor Bob Clarke, former GM Ron Hextall, and fan favorite Scott Hartnell.

The first edition of Snow The Goalie Radio will air from 6-7PM over-the-air and via the 610 ESPN livestream. Snow The Goalie is the second show from the Crossing Broad Podcast Network to make it onto terrestrial radio in a recurring time slot, following the August premiere of Crossed Up. All episodes of Snow The Goalie Radio will also be available via the Snow The Goalie podcast feed, available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, GooglePlay, Stitcher, iHeartRadio, and wherever else you get your podcasts.

Call in and let the guys know what you think: (888) 728-9941 and keep the conversation going on Twitter: @AntSanPhilly @JoyOnBroad

For more Flyers coverage, tune into The Press Row Show as Anthony and Russ live stream during pregame and the first and second intermission breaks of every Flyers home game live from press row of the Wells Fargo Center via the Crossing Broad Facebook page and Twitter.

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Fore-Czeched! Flyers Beat Blackhawks 4-3 with Relentless Pressure

Anthony SanFilippo - October 4, 2019

Two days ago it was 90 degrees, and it felt more like July 2 than October 2.

Back on July 2, we were perplexed about the Flyers. What exactly was their offseason plan? Overpaying for Kevin Hayes? Trading for marginal-at-best defensive upgrades in Matt Niskanen and Justin Braun?

Fast forward three months and after a less-than-inspiring training camp that culminated with a loss to a Swiss League team, albeit in an exhibition game, the season was slated to open and new Flyers coach Alain Vigneault wasn’t happy with his team.

The lines he tried in preseason? They were changing. The defensive pairings? Yeah, they were changing too.

Couple that with the tumult of not being able to have more than 20 players on the opening day roster because of some unfortunate management of the salary cap, and well, the feeling was that there was going be more of the same-old, same-old that we had seen from the Flyers in the past seven years.

But then something happened. The winds of change rolled in. The temperature dropped nearly 30 degrees. It felt like hockey weather for sure. And with that feeling, came a Friday afternoon season opener as the Flyers took on the Chicago Blackhawks in Prague as part of the NHL’s Global Series, the annual sojourn for games elsewhere in the world besides North America.

And wouldn’t you know it, the Flyers changed, too.

They played a very solid brand of hockey, dominated the possession for much of the game, and came away with a well-played 4-3 victory over the Blackhawks to win their opener for the fourth straight season.

Of course, the last three seasons didn’t inspire much in the way of positive hockey after those previous opening wins, but there were some things that were shown in this game against Chicago that might give you the inkling that this time could be different.

After all, it’s crucial for the Flyers to get off to at least a decent start this season. Anything less will leave fans apathetic. With a lot of buzz around both the Eagles and Sixers as potential championship contenders this season, the Flyers could quickly slip into the realm of irrelevancy if they don’t start well.

Which is why they should be happy about what happened Friday in Prague.

Travis Konecny scored two goals. He was great. We’ll get to him. Oskar Lindblom had a power play goal – on the second PP unit – something that never happened last season (OK… “never” is a little misleading, but without looking it up, if the second power play unit scored seven goals last year, that would have been a lot) and Michael Raffl’s insurance goal proved to be the game-winner, but on the list of things that impressed me most, those are further down the rankings.

Six things I saw that I think will be more indicative of the Flyers’ play moving forward, rather than just the guys who got on the scoresheet after the jump:

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Snider Hockey Mural to Be Dedicated on Saturday

Russ Joy - October 4, 2019

If you’re a Flyers fan looking for something to do this weekend, there’s a cool event happening that you should consider checking out. Mural Arts Philadelphia will be holding a dedication in conjunction with the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation for a new mural Snider Hockey: Inspiring Our Youth on Saturday, October 5 at 12PM. The dedication will take place at 2037 S. 10th St. (at Snyder Avenue) in South Philadelphia. Per their press release, the mural, “Features the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation and celebrates the life and legacy of its founder and the visionary behind the Philadelphia Flyers, the late Ed Snider. The design, created by artist Jared Bader, highlights how Snider Hockey builds lives and unites communities through its on-ice and off-ice initiatives, including mentorship, tutoring, life lessons, and academic support in attending and graduating college.”

For those who are unaware:

Snider created Snider Hockey in 2005 as a personal commitment to teach children important life lessons. The mission of the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation is to build lives and unite communities. It uses the sport of hockey to help educate young people to succeed in the game of life. Snider Hockey services are targeted for inner-city boys and girls who otherwise would not have the opportunity to learn to skate or to play ice hockey. The program includes over 3,000 students.

The following are expected to be in attendance at the ceremony:

  • Mark Squilla, City Councilman, City of Philadelphia
  • Kathryn Ott Lovell, Commissioner, Parks and Recreation, City of Philadelphia
  • Sarena Snider, daughter of Ed Snider
  • Virlen Reyes, Alum, Snider Hockey
  • Jane Golden, Executive Director, Mural Arts Philadelphia
  • Jared Bader, Artist

More on the artist and organization after the jump:

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Philadelphia is a Better Sports Town When the Flyers Are Good

Kevin Kinkead - October 4, 2019

Happy season opener, Flyers fans.

Ahead of the puck drop in Prague, you should know that you have not been forgotten. We have not forsaken you or the team you’ve loyally supported for many years now.

When I say, “we,” I’m talking about the Philadelphia sports fan who does not identify as a hockey diehard. I’m talking your typical Eagles fan, a casual ‘four for four’ guy, or even fringe folks who watch big five basketball, soccer, and other sports that occupy a place on the fringes of the Delaware Valley sporting spectrum.

If you feel like you yourself exist on the periphery, that the Flyers don’t get enough respect or media coverage in 2019, you’re probably right, but you should understand that this is just a natural occurrence that affects every franchise. This is the cyclical nature of sport, where teams hit peaks and valleys in popularity that directly correlates to wins and losses. The Sixers struggled immensely though the Process years, then finally righted the ship, and now they command significant attention. The Phillies won a World Series, then fell off hard before going out and signing Bryce Harper, which resulted in a boost to attendance and TV ratings. Round and round we go, as RATT’s Stephen Pearcy once sang.

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