Watch Comcast's original report on the Vet demolition 10 years ago today

Watch Comcast's original report on the Vet demolition 10 years ago today

I can't remember where I was the day the Vet came down. All I can recall is that I was out of town and therefore unable to make it down to South Philly to watch the 700 level meet its end. Maybe I was a little disappointed for missing out on the destruction of Veterans Stadium in person, though to be honest, probably not.

It was ten years ago today that Mayor John Street and the Phillie Phanatic blew Veterans Stadium to the ground. Now we've got Citizens Bank Park and the Linc across the street.

Sure, there's probably a small part of all of us that miss the place. Not for the sightlines or amenities, but for the memories. A lot of us probably saw our first sporting event there, probably taken along to a game with your dad and an uncle, being wowed at the size of the place and the excitement inside it. And then remember being annoyed for having to walk up so many damn ramps.

Pretty sure the Vet is where I learned what stale beer and drunk people smelled like.

I even played quarterback for a CYO game in the seventh grade at the Vet. There was a great photo of me alone on the turf from like 100 yards away. I don't know if that still exists.

I remember the first time I saw a fight between an Eagles fan and a Redskins fan and the one guy was so fat that his pants fell down while he was fighting. My dad made fun of him, if I remember correctly. I remember sitting up in the 700 level for Phillies games as my friend Jimmy's dad worked as an usher. Freebies all day. I remember Barry Sanders getting tore up in the playoffs and I remember the final Birds playoff push at the Vet. I remember seeing the Rolling Stones there. I remember a lot.

The Vet is gone. I can't say I miss it all that much. We've still got the memories.

And I'm happy The 700 Level lives on.

Steve Mason rediscovers himself in New York just before Flyers return

Steve Mason rediscovers himself in New York just before Flyers return

It had been a while since Steve Mason saw himself.

Walking into the Barclays Center on Sunday, the Flyers’ goalie was 0-6-2 with a 4.03 goals-against average and .844 save percentage over his last 10 appearances (see more recent Flyers numbers and stats).

A far cry of how Mason truly sees himself in net.

But heading into Wednesday’s rivalry clash with the Rangers, Mason will have something to build on, something he couldn’t say since Dec. 21 - the last previous time he had earned a victory. He’s fresh off his first win in over a month, a massive one for Mason considering all the key moments on Sunday the Flyers hope invigorate his confidence.

Without numerous clutch stops from their goalie, the Flyers don’t come back from two goals down to beat the Islanders, 3-2, in overtime. Mason made four saves  — three on four-time All-Star John Tavares — in just over a minute of a third-period power play. The Flyers ended up having to kill two New York man advantages in the final 10 minutes of regulation in order to force overtime.

The extra session is when Mason was just as good, if not better, stoning Tavares on a breakaway attempt that had game-winner written all over it. Mason made four saves in overtime after 13 in the third period.

“I was happy with the way that, personally, this game went for myself,” Mason said Sunday. “It’s been a tough stretch and this is more the type of game that I expect of myself. In recent games, the team was lacking the big saves and tonight it shows what kind of difference it can make.”

It was a massive performance heading into a massive three-game stretch against the Rangers, Maple Leafs and Hurricanes.

“Mase made some huge saves for us,” Simmonds said. “It allowed us to get back in that game.

“It’s not just Mase [with the] ups and downs. Everyone in here has been kind of fighting it and squeezing sticks pretty tight. That one felt good and I think Mase led the charge for sure.”

Mason understands just one game doesn’t turn around a season.

“It’s nice to feel good after a game,” Mason said. “At the same time, whether you’re winning or losing, you have to have a short mindset and get ready for the next one.”

That brings the Flyers to Madison Square Garden Wednesday to face the Rangers, who they’ve lost five straight games to dating back to last season. Mason hasn’t had much luck against New York this season, allowing seven goals in two losses with an .860 save percentage. However, in 2015-16, Mason put up a 1.74 goals-against average and .941 save percentage in five games against the Rangers.

“That’s going to be a tough game going into MSG,” Mason said Tuesday (see story).

The good thing: Mason was in New York two days ago, remembering what he can be.

Manute Bol's 7-foot, 17-year-old son dominates in HS season debut

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Manute Bol's 7-foot, 17-year-old son dominates in HS season debut

Bol Bol, the 17-year-old son of the late Manute Bol, is a top high school basketball prospect with offers from schools like Arizona, Kansas and Creighton. This highlight tape should give you an idea why.
 
Bol, whose father played in the NBA for parts of 12 seasons, including 215 games for the Sixers, now attends the famed Mater Dei High School in California and played in his first game of the season this past weekend. Listed as the No. 16 overall prospect in the 2018 recruiting class by Scout, Bol started his season off with a big 21-point, 10-rebound effort.
 
Take a look at the highlight tape from the 6-foot-11 Bol and expect to see him carry on his father’s legacy on the court at a major NCAA college basketball program soon.