Ward Boss: Carolina Wins Despite JVRRead Brilliance

Ward Boss: Carolina Wins Despite JVRRead Brilliance

If it feels like the Carolina Hurricanes never, ever beat the Flyers, it's because they very rarely do. Even more rare is a Flyers loss in regulation. Unfortunately, the Canes didn't come to play with that in mind on Monday night, controlling most of the game led by goalie Cam Ward and some opportunistic forwards on their way to a 4-2 win.

James van Riemsdyk had a hell of a game for the Flyers scoring the first goal and assisting Matt Read on the second. It was Ward's night though, and aside from a stretch of the second period, the Flyers trudged their way through a game they'll need to forget in a hurry.

Notes and highlights below. If nothing else, worth a look at JVR's sick move on the assist.

The Flyers got off to a rough start, conceding the opening goal to a hungry Hurricanes power play unit. Ward was sharp early, setting a tone that it would take some skill to beat him tonight. The Flyers looked to be finishing the second period strong before letting up a late goal, but got rough—a hopeful sign that they weren't going to slink their way through the next 40 minutes.

They came out with a fast start in the second period, with Claude Giroux narrowly missing a goal on a pretty move, catching full iron instead. Not long after, van Riemsdyk dunked one on Ward, banging home a wraparound with some power behind it.

The Canes would extend their lead again though on a nice shot by Chad LaRose, who beat Ilya Bryzgalov with a quick wrister off his opposite foot. On the one hand, you want to see Bryz stop a head-on shot like that. On the other, it was a perfect shot taken in a blink, and LaRose earned every bit of it.

Read brought the Flyers to within one when he buried a great opportunity created by van Riemsdyk on the power play. Riemer beat his man with a sweet move behind his own back as he went behind the net, then threw a blind backhand in front to a salivating Read. The white hot rookie didn't miss, tallying his sixth goal in his last five games.

Up Next:
Another team the Flyers usually kick the crap out of—The New York Islanders—will play host on Wednesday. Hopefully the Flyers don't lose their third straight to a benthos-dwelling team.

Photo: Eric Hartline-US PRESSWIRE

CSN, TCN to air 25 of Union's 34 games in 2017

CSN, TCN to air 25 of Union's 34 games in 2017

Twenty-five of the Union’s 34 games in 2017 will be featured on CSN and TCN, as Jim Curtin’s club vies for a second straight playoff berth.

Twenty matches will air on TCN, while five can be seen on CSN. The nine others will be appear across 6ABC, ESPN and FOX Sports 1.

The Union’s season opener on March 5 at the Vancouver Whitecaps will broadcast on TCN and the team’s home opener on March 11 against Toronto FC will air on CSN. The next three games — March 18 at Orlando City SC, April 1 at D.C. United and April 8 vs. the Portland Timbers — will be shown on TCN.

The Union are coming off an 11-14-9 season and their second-ever trip to the MLS playoffs in which they suffered a first-round exit to Toronto FC.

For the Union’s full 2017 schedule, click here.

Best of NHL: Toews nets hat trick in Blackhawks' win over Wild

Best of NHL: Toews nets hat trick in Blackhawks' win over Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- Jonathan Toews had three goals and two assists and the Chicago Blackhawks beat rival Minnesota 5-3 on Tuesday night for their second win over the Western Conference-leading Wild in less than two weeks.

Toews notched his fourth career hat trick on an empty-netter with 1:02 left to stave off a spirited rally by the Wild, who began a franchise-record eight-game homestand on Feb. 8 with a 4-3 overtime loss to the Blackhawks. Toews had a goal and two assists in that one and has 37 points in 35 career games against Minnesota.

Chicago's captain has been chewing up almost everyone else, too, with 20 points in his last 12 games. Toews' wing men Nick Schmaltz and Richard Panik had the other goals, giving the Blackhawks 34 goals in their last eight games. Their first line totaled nine points.

Mikael Granlund's second power-play goal for the Wild brought them within 4-3, before Ryan Suter hit the crossbar with a shot that nearly tied it (see full recap).

Islanders open 9-game road trip with win
DETROIT -- Calvin de Haan was credited with a go-ahead goal that caromed off an opponent late in the second period and the New York Islanders went on to beat the Detroit Red Wings 3-1 Tuesday night.

De Haan's shot from above the left circle was stopped by Petr Mrazek, but the rebound went off Detroit defenseman Xavier Ouellet and the back of the goaltender's left leg and into the net. John Tavares scored early in the third period to give the Islanders a two-goal lead and they coasted to the victory.

Josh Bailey had a goal and an assist, and Thomas Greiss stopped 26 shots for New York.

Henrik Zetterberg scored for Detroit and Mrazek finished with 19 saves.

The Islanders, in contention for a wild-card spot, began a stretch of nine straight road games by winning for the third time in four games and improved to 8-13-4 away from home (see full recap).

Crosby, Penguins take care of Hurricanes
RALEIGH, N.C. -- Sidney Crosby scored the go-ahead goal on a deflection in the second period, and the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-1 on Tuesday night.

Evgeni Malkin and Scott Wilson also scored to help the reigning Stanley Cup champions bounce back from their only loss since the All-Star break. Pittsburgh moved three points behind East-leading Washington and is 7-1-3 since the break.

Jeff Skinner scored for the last-place Hurricanes, who have their second five-game losing streak in the past five weeks. They have been outscored 19-4 during the current slide.

Matt Murray made 29 saves for the Penguins while Cam Ward stopped 19 shots for Carolina (see full recap).