The Orange & Black Pack has joined up with Penguins blog High Heels & Hockey to bring you a guest-post segment. Writer Stevie Watson has written the following Flyers/Penguins game preview. Both blogs figured this would be a fun and interesting change in pace, as well as bring even more awareness from the hockey communities to each other's forums.
Michael DeNicola's guest-blog on High Heels & Hockey can be read by clicking here....
"Pens Look to Extend Win Streak to 12 and Send the Flyers Golfing"
by Stevie Watson
Sunday, March 24, 2013 --
Thank you to the guys of O&BP for allowing me to post on your site. I assure you, unlike Max Talbot, I am not here to bring a whole host of new strains of STD to your city. I am only here to teach you all what it is like to have a city that remembers what a championship looks like. I mean, even the Pirates have won a title more recently than the Flyers.
For the last time this season, the Flyers and Penguins will meet on the ice. The only chance of this happening again will be in a repeat of last year’s playoffs, if the Flyers can manage to squeak out a playoff berth (so long as the Pens can maintain their first place status in the East).
To say that the Flyers have had a rough season would be the understatement of the year. With their superstar captain all but retired, a constant carousel of injuries, a goalie who is the world’s biggest head-case at best, and new captain Claude Giroux averaging only 1 goal per 3 games, the Flyers have found themselves for the first time in a long time near the bottom of the standings.
The good thing about this though, is it gives you even more reason to “boo” your own team. If we are so lucky as a nation, we will watch your fans burn Philadelphia to the ground on April 27th in what will be the world’s greatest dumpster fire.
This will be the ultimate battle of the Best Player in the World. The reigning Video Game MVP versus the front runner for the Art Ross and likely Hart Trophy this season. Being the greatest in the game is a tough responsibility, especially if the animation screws up your facial features or the shade of ginger in your beard.
In 2010, the Flyers stopped a Penguin win streak at 12 games. They stand a chance today to put an end to the Pens’11 game win streak. If there is one thing the Flyers do well, it is beat the Pens, especially inside of CONSOL Energy Center.
This game is huge for the Flyers. Not just because of the rivalry, but because they are a team in the most detrimental of positions. The season is already half over and they have yet to figure out a way to win and bring their record to at least an even .500. They have won only 3 games in the month of March. One loss was against the Pens in one of the closest games of the season.
Since that game though, the Pens improved their discipline- which unfortunately is usually nonexistent against the Flyers on any given day. The Flyers know how to get inside of the Penguins’ heads, throwing them off their game and allowing an all-out scoring clinic to commence. Your key to beating the Pens was Sergei Bobrovsky, but you shunned him to the Blue Jackets in favor of arguably one of the biggest joke of a goalie contract in league history. Paul Holmgren’s math skills may top your list of issues. (7+9=Frisbee?)
This game will be physical and Wayne Simmonds and Brayden Schenn can be expected to goon it up in an attempt to draw penalties. Danny Briere is sitting today, without a doubt because one of his fangs broke off.
Composure and special teams are the keys to winning against the Flyers. Scott Hartnell- whom has already missed half of the season - is looking for his first power play goal after being among the top power play goal scorers in the league last year. I’d say that the Flyers have an edge with Evgeni Malkin scratched tonight nursing a shoulder injury, but Chris Kunitz and our fourth line are more than ready to make Bryz consider a career move to the Russian space program.
With the Pens not only focused, but also gaining a penchant for coming back and winning games when they are trailing in the third period, the Flyers need to hope for the following to pull out a win:
- Gingeroux’s wrists are in peak, physical condition.
- Scott Hartnell can stay on his feet and refrain from biting anyone.
- The Best Player in the Video Game World finds the back of the net.
- Zac Rinaldo can stay out of jail.
- Ilya Bryzgalov can snap out of his clinical depression.
- The Penguin defensive corpses lays down and dies at Marc-Andre Fleury’s feet.
LET'S GO PENS!
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