Matt Read celebrates his first goal of the season with Claude Giroux in the Flyers' 2-1 win over the Rangers. (USA Today Images)
Anyone who has any kind of online bank or credit card account knows what an e-mail alert is.
But have you ever heard of a hockey player getting one right before his game about a goalie he’s about to face?
But Matt Read has.
Read received an e-mail Thursday afternoon prior to the Flyers' win over the Rangers later that night at the Wells Fargo Center (see story).
It was advising him about goalie Cam Talbot, who he had faced in college 12 times, but most likely had forgotten about. Talbot was making his NHL debut hours later against the Flyers.
What Read didn’t know was that he had 12 career goals against Talbot when he played at Bemidji State and the latter was at Alabama-Huntsville.
In fact, Talbot likely forgot about Read, as well. At the morning skate, Talbot said the only player he knew on the Flyers was Zac Rinaldo, who had been a teammate of his in the OPJHL and an opponent in the AHL (see story).
Both Read and Talbot forgot about each other.
“I didn’t know I had that [success] against him in college hockey,” admitted Read, who scored a clutch shorthanded goal in the Flyers' 2-1 victory (see Instant Replay).
“But I got an e-mail before the game and I don’t really look at my e-mails on gameday, but for some reason I did.
“And I saw that I had a couple goals and an assist against him in college hockey, and I felt tonight could be my night to get back into the groove of things and start helping this team win.”
Read said he really didn’t have a specific shot that he knew would bring him success against Talbot.
“I looked back at Coots (Sean Couturier) to see if I could make a pass and you always know with the length of the pads these days that the five-hole is always open, so I held the stick tight and shot the five-hole.
“I was lucky to get a nice bounce and get a half breakaway and you have to have a shoot-first mentality if you want to score more than two goals a game. That is something our whole team has to work on, is shooting the puck more and driving to the net.”
And who sent the e-mail? It wasn’t a fan, player or even anyone at Bemidji State.
It was Flyers senior director of communications Zack Hill.
You can be sure Read will likely be reading all of his e-mails on gameday in the future.