Yes, Steve Downie is deaf in his right ear and halted today's game due to lost hearing aid

Yes, Steve Downie is deaf in his right ear and halted today's game due to lost hearing aid

During the third period of the Flyers’ Monday afternoon matinee with the Islanders, a scrum ensued in front the teams’ respective benches.

Nothing unusual for a hockey game, especially a hockey game between two longtime rival clubs.

But what was unusual was the short delay after the whistles finally blew to end the tussle and the refs stepped in to send players away to the penalty box.

Jim Jackson and Keith Jones couldn’t figure out what the delay was for until Steve Coates interjected and made it known that the officials and players were looking for Steve Downie’s hearing aid, which had been knocked out during the scrum.

If you’re like myself, your first reaction was, “Wait, Steve Downie is deaf? Really?”

A quick Google search landed on this Denver Post story from earlier this season when the 26-year-old Downie was a member of the Colorado Avalanche, before he was traded to the Flyers in exchange for Max Talbot.

In the “Details” portion of the story, it’s noted that Downie lost all hearing in his right ear at age 13 due to a rare disorder known as otosclerosis.

The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders says otosclerosis is caused by “abnormal bone remodeling in the middle ear, which disrupts the ability of sound to travel from the middle ear to the inner ear.”

Hopefully that clears it up for you if you were wondering much like I was.

It’s kind of interesting that not only is there a partially deaf player in the NHL, but he also plays for the hometown team. And not many people knew about it.

You learn something new every day.

Union emotional after Maurice Edu's season-ending injury

Union emotional after Maurice Edu's season-ending injury

CHESTER, Pa. — On the eve of his comeback after missing nearly 13 months with a left tibia stress fracture and other related injuries, Union midfielder Maurice Edu fractured his left fibula on Saturday, keeping him out for the 2016 playoffs and beyond.

“I was trying to take the shot on goal and my foot got stuck in the turf,” Edu said Sunday, in his blue Union-issued suit and supported by crutches. “My ankle rolled and twisted and it kind of snapped a little bit. I heard it crack, and a lot of pain from there. I got a scan afterward, and there was a break.”

There's no timetable his return.

Edu, 30, has spent over a calendar year fighting various injuries that have kept him out of game action. His trouble began on Sept. 30, 2015, when he played through the U.S. Open Cup final with a partially torn groin and sports hernia. It was during Edu’s recovery from those injuries that he developed a stress fracture.

"A little bit frustration. A lot of frustration, to be honest," he said. "But all I can do now is get back to work, focus on the positives and make sure that my situation isn’t a distraction from the team."

Edu’s teammates were equally devastated by the news. Edu, the Union captain when healthy, is popular and well-respected in the locker room.

"I feel so bad for him," said Alejandro Bedoya, who wore a dedication to Edu under his jersey on Sunday. "He’s one of my good friends, so I was looking forward to playing alongside him. I know how hard he’s worked to get back, and to see him go out like that, it’s heartbreaking. I’m sad for his loss and I hope he stays strong."

Edu, who has been with the Union since 2014, returned to training in July and played three conditioning appearances with the Union’s USL team, Bethlehem Steel FC. He was on the bench for the Union’s last three games and was set to make his first appearance in over a year against the New York Red Bulls on Sunday, a game the Union eventually lost, 2-0 (see game story).

"We’re gutted for Mo," Union manager Jim Curtin said. "He was slated to start today. It’s real upsetting because he’s worked so hard to get back on the field. It’s been a tough 2016 for him, but I know he’ll come back stronger."

While he was visibly shaken by recent injury, Edu is driven to return.

"What happened, happened," Edu said. "I have no control over that. The only thing I do have control over is my next steps from here, how I prepare myself mentally and emotionally and how I continue to support this group."

Temple picked to finish 6th in AAC preseason poll

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Temple picked to finish 6th in AAC preseason poll

This is starting to become a trend. One Temple hopes to continue to prove wrong.

For the third straight year, Temple was chosen to finish sixth in the American Athletic Conference preseason poll. The poll, which was released on Monday, is voted on by the conference's head coaches.

Also selected to finish sixth last season, the Owls posted a 21-12 overall record and a 14-4 mark in the AAC to reach the NCAA Tournament. In 2014-15, TU tied for third in the AAC with a 13-5 record and was one of the last teams left out of the Big Dance.

Cincinnati was tabbed to win the American title in the poll, just ahead of UConn.

Temple, who returns three starters from last season's team, opens the 2016-17 campaign against city rival La Salle at the Liacouras Center on Nov. 11.