Man, this rain is awful. When is this rain going to stopOMG CHECK OUT THIS GIF of Allen Iverson tossing an alley oop to Andre Iguodala. The Evster just emailed it to me after finding it on his favorite website other than The700Level.com other than other than AbeVigoda.com other than Yourethemannowdog.com other than than TVMyWifeWatches.tumblr, which is The Grand Archives. It's kind of a hodgepodge of sports amazingness from pretty much any time period. It's worth checking out. I'd tell you what the rest of The Evster's email said but then I'd probably get fired.
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- The Flyers passed a freshness test Sunday night — barely.
After building a 3-0 lead in the first 23 minutes, the Flyers held on for a 3-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks 3-2 at Rogers Arena.
The Flyers were the more rested team. They had two days off here following Thursday’s loss in Edmonton — and a three-day break before the start of the trip.
But they almost allowed the Canucks to come back in their second game of back-to-back home games with only a day’s rest following a grueling six-game United States road trip.
The Flyers (28-24-7) moved within a point of the eighth and final playoff spot, currently shared by Florida and Boston, in the Eastern Conference. The Canucks (26-28-6) were denied a chance to gain ground on the final postseason berth in the Western Conference.
Wayne Simmonds, Jakub Voracek and Brayden Schenn — who added the goal that proved to be the winner — scored for the Flyers. Two of the three goals came on the power play. Both teams failed to score in the third period.
Markus Granlund and Jannik Hansen replied for the Canucks.
With the win, the Flyers avoided going winless on a three-game tour through British Columbia and Alberta. They posted their first victory in Western Canada in the past nine attempts.
Coach Dave Hakstol showed loyalty in goaltender Michal Neuvirth, after he allowed four goals on his first 12 shots in Thursday’s one-sided loss in Edmonton. The goaltender started off much better Sunday, as he got his toe on Markus Granlund’s dangerous chance from in close early and stopped all eight shots that he faced in the first period.
Hakstol was looking for the Flyers to rediscover their “swagger” on the power play. He got his wish early as Simmonds jammed in a Shayne Gostisbehere rebound only 5:45 into the game. The puck barely crossed the line but was clearly in, as confirmed by a video review. Vancouver winger Alex Burrows was off for hooking at the time. In the second period, Schenn padded his NHL power-play goals lead as he gave the Flayers a 3-0 lead at 2:38. Schenn scored his 14th power-play goal of the season on a shot from the slot as Simmonds screened Canucks goaltender Ryan Miller. With his goal, Simmonds moved into a tie for second in NHL man-advantage markers with Washington’s Alex Ovechkin. Both players have 12.
Voracek busts his slump
The drought is over for Voracek. The winger busted his scoring slump as he gave the Flyers a 2-0 lead at 2:38 of the second period. The goal was Voracek’s first in 10 games. He had not scored since Jan. 25 against the New York Rangers.
Shayne the unfriendly ghost
Gostisbehere did not live up to his nickname. Ghost was quite visible as he assisted on all of the Flyers’ goals. The Flyers started scoring as Simmonds tipped in Gostisbehere’s point shot during a power play.
Did you notice?
Defenseman Michael Del Zotto had a chance for a rare breakaway with about five and a half minutes left in the first period, but missed a well-placed lead pass as he was coming out of the penalty box. Instead of a scoring opportunity, the missed pass led to an icing call and a face-off in the Flyers’ end.
The Flyers head back home to meet the NHL-best Washington Capitals on Wednesday night at the Wells Fargo Center. Puck drop is set for 8 p.m.
The Kings and Pelicans made waves after Sunday's NBA All-Star Game with the huge trade that sent superstar DeMarcus Cousins to New Orleans.
Sacramento sent Cousins to New Orleans for a package that included rookie Buddy Hield, Tyreke Evans, Langston Galloway and first- and second-round picks this in this year's draft.
But the Sixers and Pelicans reportedly were very close recently on deal for a "similar" package in exchange for Jahlil Okafor, according to ESPN's Ramona Shelbourne.
That "similar" package was reportedly minus Hield.
The Pelicans were very close on a deal for Jahlil Okafor about 10 days ago, offering a similar package except it didn't include Hield.— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) February 20, 2017
Deal for Okafor was very close, per source. But Philly and NOLA could never agree on protections for the picks included.— Ramona Shelburne (@ramonashelburne) February 20, 2017
So while the Pelicans are now almost certainly out of the running for Okafor, they've still made an impact on the Sixers in the near future.
Remember, the Sixers have the right to swap picks with the Kings in this year's draft via the Nik Stauskas deal in 2015.
So with Sacramento's brightest star now gone, that pick swap could be looking better and better for the Sixers.
As for Okafor, what does all this mean for his status with the Sixers?
Three of the four teams PHI talked to about a Jahlil Okafor trade have acquired a center (DEN, POR, NOLA). CHI is only team that hasn't.— Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) February 20, 2017