'Close' Calls Key Two Critical Philly Victories

'Close' Calls Key Two Critical Philly Victories

On April 11, 2012, the sports gods smiled upon Philadelphia.

The Sixers, Phillies, and Flyers went three-for-three on Wednesday night, each club picking up an important victory at varying stages of their respective seasons. However, two of them benefited from a blown call by officials.

With one out in the bottom of the third inning, Juan Pierre singled for the Phillies, then attempted to steal second. The catcher's throw seemed to beat the runner by a mile, and Jose Reyes applied the tag, but Pierre was called safe, despite every piece of visual evidence indicating otherwise. Three pitches later, Pierre was the first of five runs to come across in the inning, setting the tone for a 7-1 win.

Trailing 3-0 early in the second period, Brayden Schenn fed an outlet pass from right outside Flyers territory to a surging Danny Briere, who slipped past the defense for a breakaway. A freeze frame shows Briere beat the puck into the attack zone by a few feet, but the linesman called the play onside, and the shooter buried the rubber top shelf. The Flyers eventually came all the way back, pulling off a stunning 4-3 win in overtime.

The Pens had a few calls go their way too, including an icing wave-off
that resulted in a goal. More
on that here
.

The Phillies moved to 2-3 for the season, but more importantly, snapped out of an offensive funk that was strangling the enthusiasm out of a brand new campaign. The Flyers, of course, stole game 1 right out from under the rival Penguins in their own building -- again.

On a related note, the Sixers defeated the Raptors 93-75 for their second consecutive victory. Perhaps they can regain some momentum yet.

Great night for Philly sports, terrible night for zebras. I guess sometimes you've got to be lucky to be good.

Pierre photo via US PRESSWIRE. Briere photo via @NOTSCNHL.

Best of NHL: Trocheck's last-second goal lifts Panthers past Blues

Best of NHL: Trocheck's last-second goal lifts Panthers past Blues

ST. LOUIS -- Vincent Trocheck scored with just under 5 seconds remaining to lift the Florida Panthers to a 2-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Monday night.

Jonathan Marchessault also scored and James Reimer stopped 26 shots to help the Panthers complete a 5-0 road trip -- their first perfect trip of at least that many games in franchise history.

Reimer has won five straight decisions and has not lost in regulation since Jan. 7 against Boston, going 6-0-1 since.

The Panthers moved into a tie with Boston for third place in the Atlantic Division, but have the edge because they have a game in hand on the Bruins.

Kyle Brodziak, playing for the second time after missing 10 games due to a broken foot, scored for the Blues and Jake Allen finished with 31 saves. St. Louis lost its second straight since winning six in a row (see full recap).

Coyotes use three-goal 1st period to beat Ducks
GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Radim Vrbata capped Arizona's three-goal first period and the Coyotes held on for 3-2 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Monday night.

Christian Dvorak and Jakob Chychrun also scored for Arizona, and starting goalie Mike Smith had 27 saves before leaving about 4 1/2 minutes into the third period after a collision in the net. Marek Langhamer helped kill a power play after being pressed into action for his NHL debut and stopped six of the seven shots he faced.

The Coyotes have won four of their last six.

Langhamer gave up Ryan Getzlaf's second goal of the night with 26.8 seconds to play, but thwarted two quality shots in the final seconds.

Jonathan Bernier gave up three goals on six shots in the first period for the Ducks. John Gibson came on to start the second and stopped all 14 shots he faced (see full recap).

Joel Embiid admits to reaggravating foot injury after 2014 surgery, almost quitting

Joel Embiid admits to reaggravating foot injury after 2014 surgery, almost quitting

Joel Embiid trusts the Process, more so than anyone — the process of patience.

After sitting out two whole seasons because of foot injuries, Embiid learned the importance of patience the hard way.

Appearing on NBA TV's Open Court, Joel Embiid opened up about how he reaggravated the fracture in his foot that cost him the 2015-16 season.

"I didn't know how to deal with patience," Embiid said on the roundtable discussion. "I just wanted to do stuff, that's why I think I needed a second surgery, because after my first one, I just wanted to play basketball again. I just wanted to be on the court and I pushed through what I wasn't supposed to.

"At one point I thought about quitting. I just wanted to come back home and just forget everything."

Embiid goes on to discuss the Sixers' turnaround this season and his mindset during his recovery. Watch the full clip below. 

Embiid also said he models his game after Hakeem Olajuwon.