The Fightins: Flyers Quotes After the Battle With Ottawa

The Fightins: Flyers Quotes After the Battle With Ottawa

The Flyers were naturally somewhat upbeat after their 6-2 fight-filled win over the Senators at home last night, marking their eighth win in nine games since the new year started. And, just as naturally, a lot of the questions being asked by the reporters in the locker room focused on the five third period fights that will be the most memorable part of the game. Intentionally or not, some the quotes they got out of the Flyers were pretty hilarious. 

Claude Giroux was one of two entirely surprising combatants in this one, and we'll get this post started with what he had to say about throwing down:

Why so many fights in this one?
"Oh there were a couple hits and I don't know, the fans like it and it's a good time."

How many fights did you have?

"Maybe eight or ten. I don't really fight. When I get pissed off at something, I try finding the smallest guy on the other team and go fight him."

Did Carter jump in to try and defend you?

"I don't know, I'm not too sure what happened. Two guys kind of jumped me and Cartsy had to jump in. But I just felt like I had to stick up for myself."

Carter was a man of few words, but his quotes were also pretty funny:

How long had it been since you've been in a fight?
"A couple years."

Yeah, how did it feel out there?

"It was all right."

Do you remember your last one? Ryan Whitney?
"Yep."
 
It was a sleeper until the third and all those fights... why so many fights?
"I don't know."

Just felt like it?
"I wasn't doing much else out there. I figured I'd do something."

What were you thinking when you went after Winchester, was that because of two guys jumping Claude?

"Yeah, I mean you have to get in there and do something."

Amen.

The captain had a great night on the ice, with two goals and two assists, but Richie wasn't among the five fighters, and he was pretty clear that he didn't want to talk about fights after the game. 

Why so many fights?
“I don’t know.  You’ll have to ask the guys who fought.”

Why didn’t you fight?
“I don’t like fighting.  I was on the bench.”

Jeff Carter doesn’t fight ever either.
“He gets a couple.  I don’t know.  He’s tough.”

It didn’t look like he had been in a fight in a while out there.
“Tell him that.”

Wellll okay then... Moving right along... (Richie's quotes on everything not related to the fights were more substantive, he was just clearly uninterested in talking about other people's fights.)

Even Sergei Bobrovsky had to answer fight questions though:

Did you hear the “goalie fight” chant at the end of the game?
“I did not hear it.”

Did you feel left out with all that fighting going on?
“Well, everyone had a couple so I don’t know where I would fit in.”

Have you ever been in a fight?
“No.”

 

Pronger wasn't shy about answering:

Are you disappointed that you didn’t get to drop the gloves?
“Well there were an awful lot of them out there.  We answered, they were running around and we answered them.”

 

You know that feeling you had when you saw Claude Giroux's bare hands flying toward a helmet? Peter Laviolette was right there with ya:

Peter, what’s going through your mind, on the bench, when you see your skill guys (Claude Giroux and Jeff Carter) throwing punches?
“Probably not something you want to see on a regular basis when it comes to those guys. But you never know what every game has in store for you. Guys were pretty competitive in the third period to make sure we got a win.  It’s just the way the game happened and I thought our guys did a great job.”

 Do you worry (when you see something like that)?
 “I think you are always worried when you see something like that.  That’s part of the game; you have to take things as they come and that’s what happened tonight.  That’s the way they played.  Like I said, I think we did a good job in the third period tonight.”

 

For videos of the carnage and a complete recap, click here

AP Photo

Sixers-Magic 5 things: Sixers ready, rested with hope for dry court

Sixers-Magic 5 things: Sixers ready, rested with hope for dry court

The Sixers (4-14) will tip off against the Orlando Magic (7-12) at the Wells Fargo Center on Friday night (7 p.m./CSN and CSNPhilly.com).

Let's take a closer look at the matchup:

1. Floored
Let's try this again.

The Sixers will return to the Wells Fargo Center court for the first time since Wednesday's game against the Sacramento Kings was postponed because of moisture on the floor.

While the Sixers were frustrated that they couldn't face the Kings, the team was also happy that player safety was made the top priority in the postponement decision.

"It was disappointing not to play," head coach Brett Brown said after practice on Thursday. "It got to a stage the longer that it went and it was being prolonged and prolonged, I'm glad that ultimately we didn't play."

2. Rested and ready
The postponement of Wednesday's game means the Sixers haven't played since Monday's road loss to the Toronto Raptors.

Center Joel Embiid should be even more rested than his teammates since he didn't make the trip north of the border because it was the second game of a back-to-back set.

When Embiid does return to action Friday against the Magic, he will have a little more freedom. The NBA's Eastern Conference Rookie of the Month had his minutes restriction raised from 24 to 28 earlier this week.

That should only mean good things for Embiid, who turned in a strong effort when the Sixers faced off against the Magic earlier this season. Embiid recorded 18 points and 10 boards for his first-ever double-double in a 103-101 loss to Orlando back on Nov. 1.

3. Protection plan
Perhaps Embiid's bump in minutes will help the Sixers better protect the paint this time around.

During the season's first meeting, in which the Sixers blew an 18-point lead, the Magic scored a massive 60 points in the paint. Former Sixer Nikola Vucevic and Serge Ibaka led the way with 45 combined points.

The Sixers can't allow that type of production inside, especially from a team that ranks 25th in the league with an average of 39.5 points in the paint per game.

4. Injuries
Jerryd Bayless (wrist), Nerlens Noel (knee) and Ben Simmons (foot) are out for the Sixers.

Former Sixer Jodie Meeks (foot) is a game-time decision for the Magic.

5. This and that
- The Sixers have lost three straight to the Magic.

- Vucevic has averaged 20.3 points and 13.2 rebounds against the Sixers during his career.

- Dario Saric scored a career-high 21 points on 9 of 14 shooting in the season's first clash.

A closer look at the Cincinnati Bengals, a team the Eagles should beat

A closer look at the Cincinnati Bengals, a team the Eagles should beat

You think Eagles fans have it bad? After five straight trips to the playoffs, Bengals fans were expecting their team to be good. Really good. Instead, they're 3-7-1 and on the verge of their first losing season since 2011.

And in all honesty, the Eagles should probably clinch it for them. With the Bengals' best player out with an injury, there's nothing particularly scary about this team. The offense is running out of weapons, and the defense, while good, has its weaknesses.

This is the Eagles' chance to get back to .500 and make one final desperation push. Can they take advantage?

 

OFFENSE

Quarterback: Andy Dalton

After a breakout 2015 campaign in which he finished second in the NFL with a 106.2 passer rating, it seems Dalton is back to his usual self. The sixth-year veteran's 63.5 completion percentage and 7.4 yards per attempt are better than what he's posted in years past, but down significantly from last season, while sacks are up. About the only thing that's carried over for Dalton from his career year is he seemingly learned to take care of the football, as he's thrown only six interceptions in 11 games. Dalton is a game manager with upside in a perfect situation. The 2016 Bengals are not that situation.

Strength: Nothing in particular

Now that All-Pro wide receiver A.J. Green is out with an injury, as is versatile running back Giovani Bernard, the Bengals offense isn't exactly loaded with weapons. Prior to Green and Bernard going out, the duo combined for somewhere around 60 percent of the team's production. They still have Tyler Eifert, a Pro Bowl tight end who presents matchup issues, and running back Jeremy Hill, who is like a sledgehammer with legs. Left tackle Andrew Whitworth is one of the best offensive linemen in the NFL as well, although the rest of the unit is just okay. Without Green, there's nothing very impressive about what this group can do.

Weakness: Red-zone offense

This might seem oddly specific, but moving the football hasn't been a problem for the Bengals. Cincinnati's offense ranks 10th in the league in terms of yards per game, yet at 27th is near the bottom when it comes to scoring. Even when Green was healthy and despite having big bodies like Eifert and Hill, for some reason the Bengals have really struggled to put points on the board. Part of the problem is Dalton, who's only thrown 12 touchdown passes, but his 2.9 touchdown percentage is by far the worst of his career, so it's not easy to explain why. This team simply doesn't score a ton, which is probably why they only have three wins.

 

DEFENSE

Strength: Pass defense

Cincinnati has playmakers at every level of the defense, which can make them a difficult team to pass against. It starts up front, where Geno Atkins is pushing up the middle and underrated Carlos Dunlap is coming off the edge top create a hostile environment for quarterbacks. Dunlap had 13.5 sacks a season ago, and when he doesn't get to the passer, he often bats passes down at the line, as he's done 10 times this season. The Bengals boast a fine trio of cornerbacks as well, with Dre Kirkpatrick's three interceptions, veteran Adam "Pacman" Jones and 2014 first-round draft pick Darqueze Dennard. The unit ranks 10th in passing yards per game and has 11 interceptions, so while not impenetrable, they are tough.

Weakness: Run defense

Although it may be difficult to throw against the Bengals, opponents have had little trouble finding room to run. It seems odd with guys like Atkins and Dunlap up front, not to mention quality veteran linebackers like Karlos Dansby and Vincent Rey, but the fact is they aren't getting the job done. Cincinnati ranks 28th against the run overall and 26th in terms of yards per carry, allowing an average of 4.4 per attempt. It's pretty clear what the strategy should be against this defense, particularly for an offense with mediocre talent at wide receiver. Run the ball, then run the ball some more.

X-factor: Vontaze Burfict

There may not be a bigger wild card in the NFL then Burfict. The fifth-year veteran isn't an X-factor in the conventional sense that he'll rack up a bunch of sacks or create a ton of turnovers. A 2013 Pro Bowler, Burfict does lead the team in tackles, so he'll be in on a lot of plays. The bigger concern though is really whether he might go head hunting or dive at a player's legs and potentially hurt someone. Not to say he's not a talented player, but you could argue that threat makes him a bigger game-changer than any conventional charting numbers will measure.

 

SPECIAL TEAMS

Mike Nugent has seen better days. Cincinnati's kicker has missed five field goals, including all three tries from 50 or more yards, plus a whopping four extra points this season, which makes you wonder a little bit what the team is still clinging to. The Bengals' return game isn't especially dangerous either. Alex Erickson handles the bulk of the work, and does have strong averages on both kicks and punts, although he has yet to take one to the house this season.

 

COACHING

Marvin Lewis (14th season, 115-108-3)

Somehow, despite not winning a playoff game in seven tries over 14 seasons, Lewis is still the head coach of the Bengals. Probably not for much longer though. He's in his third straight year of lame-duck status, and one more defeat would guarantee the club its first losing season since 2011. Then again, Lewis has survived down seasons before, including a pair of four-win campaigns separated by only a year. He's a good coach, but as Eagles fans well know, sometimes after 14 years it's simply time to move on. The Bengals are weird, so who knows what they will decide, but at this point, Lewis has been given more than enough second chances and opportunities.