Evan Mathis Owns the Internet

Evan Mathis Owns the Internet

By and large the world of professional sports is dominated by public relations professionals and team spokespeople who are trained to stay on message. Organizations carefully craft and manage their image. Whether fair or not, of all the teams in town the Eagles are generally thought of as the most neurotically perception obsessed. 
As a result, you rarely get any genuine insight into the personality of Eagles players.  Gone are the days when athletes hang out at a bar with beat writers and provide unfiltered glimpses of their personality. However, the internet provides a medium through which social media savvy athletes can put themselves out there. Evan Mathis is such an athlete.
This past Friday Mathis took to social news website Reddit to participate in an Ask Me Anything ("AMA") dialogue with users. Mathis, true to the AMA spirit, willingly answered questions from users regarding everything from Howard Mudd, to his best friend on the team, to what it will take for him to resign in Philly (he jokingly suggested trolling Howie Roseman), to how he used to game and take financial advantage of the beanie baby market in high school, to how he would hypothetically defeat a Tyrannosaurus in a Gladiator-style battle.
He was engaging, honest, funny, intelligent, and down to earth. He didn't touch on anything too inflammatory, but he didn't really censor himself either. The whole endeavor was really quite refreshing. 
The Redditors appreciated his willingness to answer anything to the tune of 2,900+ comments. I encourage you to check out the AMA in its entirety, but here are a few brief highlights. 

Question: "How often do you guys make fun of Jason Babin for his stance? I mean...the guy has his face dug into the grass"
Answer: "His stance is fine. He dresses up as a Jersey Shore cast member way too often though."

Question: "Given the recent focus on concussions, are you at all concerned for your long-term health? As a lineman who is constantly running head first into a brick wall from 12 inches away, are you more or less concerned then if you were a WR who would get hit much less often, but in a more violent style?
Answer: "Linemen are constantly banging their heads. Each of those sub-concussive impacts is having some negative effect on the brain. I really don't know how long I expect to live but it's been a great 30 years. I'm kind of willing to sacrifice a decade or two for the chance of not having to work in my 40's or 50's."

Again, I highly recommend you check out the full AMA. And before you haters complain that he should be in the gym working out and getting better instead of answering questions on the internet you should note that by in large he attributes his success this past season to an intensive workout program. No matter where he signs as a free agent he'll no doubt be in fantastic shape.

Hopefully he remains an Eagle. I know I'd love for him to continue to provide insight into his experiences as an athlete in this city.

Photo Credit: Howard Smith - US Presswire

Best of NHL: Ryan White scores in winning debut with Wild

Best of NHL: Ryan White scores in winning debut with Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Mikael Granlund beat two defenders to find open ice and wrap the winning shot around goalie Jonathan Quick just 12 seconds into overtime, giving the Minnesota Wild a 5-4 victory over the Los Angeles Kings on Monday night.

Granlund's 20th goal of the season gave goalie Devan Dubnyk his NHL-leading 33rd win and the Wild their 15th comeback victory. They answered all four goals in regulation by the Kings, from Nick Shore, Tanner Pearson, Jake Muzzin and Marian Gaborik.

Jason Zucker's spinning wrist shot midway through the third period tied the game for the Wild, who also had goals from Nino Niederreiter, Jordan Schroeder and Ryan White in his debut. White and Martin Hanzal were acquired in a trade with Arizona the night before.

Kucherov's hat trick carries Lightning past Sens
TAMPA, Fla. -- Nikita Kucherov scored three power-play goals in the second period and the Tampa Bay Lightning kept their fading playoff hopes alive with a 5-1 victory over the Ottawa Senators on Monday night.

Kucherov had the second hat trick of his career and added an assist in the third period. Jonathan Drouin assisted all three of his goals and Victor Hedman assisted on two.

A day after trading goaltender Ben Bishop to Los Angeles and just hours after trading forward Brian Boyle to Toronto, the Lightning improved to 6-1-2 over their past nine games.

The Senators, who won at Florida on Sunday night, are 6-6 over their past 12 games (see full recap).

Galchenyuk lifts Canadiens over Devils in OT
NEWARK, N.J. -- Alex Galchenyuk scored on a power play at 2:54 of overtime and the Montreal Canadiens rallied from a two-goal third-period deficit to beat the New Jersey Devils 4-3 on Monday night.

Max Pacioretty scored twice in the final 11:23 of regulation to tie the game and Alexander Radulov added a goal for the Canadiens, who won consecutive games for the first time since early January. Al Montoya had 34 saves for Montreal.

Kyle Palmieri, John Moore and Travis Zajac scored for the Devils, who have lost four straight games (0-2-2), the past two in overtime. Cory Schneider made 29 saves (see full recap).

Galchenyuk beat Schneider with a shot from between the circles less than a minute after Damon Severson was penalized for hooking.

NHL Notes: Capitals acquire Kevin Shattenkirk from Blues

NHL Notes: Capitals acquire Kevin Shattenkirk from Blues

WASHINGTON -- The Washington Capitals have acquired defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk in a trade with the St. Louis Blues.

Washington sent a 2017 first-round pick, conditional 2018 second-round pick, forward Zach Sanford and minor leaguer Brad Malone to St. Louis in the deal that also sent former Capitals goaltending prospect Pheonix Copley to the Blues.

The teams announced the deal Monday night.

Shattenkirk, 28, is set to be an unrestricted free agent this summer. He has 42 points on 11 goals and 31 assists this season and has 66 goals and 218 assists in 471 NHL games (see full story).

Senators: Alex Burrows acquired from Canucks
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- The Ottawa Senators are gearing up for a push to the postseason, acquiring forward Alex Burrows from Vancouver for prospect Jonathan Dahlen.

The trade gives the Senators a skilled pest with plenty of playoff experience at forward.

Burrows, 35, has played 822 regular-season games with the Canucks, with 193 goals, 191 assists and 1,066 penalty minutes. He has added 19 goals and 15 assists in 70 playoff games.

He had four straight seasons of at least 25 goals from 2008-09 to 2011-12 playing largely with the Sedin twins. His best offensive days are behind him -- he has nine goals in 55 games this season -- but he will still bring an edge to a Senators team that is pressuring Montreal for the top spot in the Atlantic Division (see full story).

Wild: Parise, Pominville out with mumps
ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Minnesota Wild forwards Zach Parise and Jason Pominville have been diagnosed with mumps and must miss at least three games.

The Wild announced Monday, shortly before faceoff against Los Angeles, that Parise and Pominville have the highly contagious virus along with other members of the organization. The veteran wings have been placed in isolation for a five-day period, meaning they'll at least miss games Tuesday at Winnipeg and Thursday at Columbus.

The Wild said players and staff were recently provided with a measles-mumps-rubella vaccination.

Vancouver played Saturday night without five players because of the mumps or symptoms associated with the virus.

With Parise and Pominville out, forwards Martin Hanzal and Ryan White made their well-timed debuts Monday after being acquired Sunday in a trade with Arizona.