PHILADELPHIA – Let’s start off with this: The jam is back.
No not that jam... although coach Peter Laviolette will tell you that it's that kind of jam that leads to this kind of locker room celebration... but the Flyers ditched their 2013 game-winning song and went a little old school.
Now, it might not be a big deal to a lot of people – after all it is just a song – but if there is any morsel of real meaning behind it consider this:
The Flyers, not happy with their performance of late, or their precarious position in the playoff race, felt like they needed to get back to doing things that made them successful. They needed to get their groove back.
And if playing a catchy Mac Miller song after wins helps them find that groove just a little bit more, then so be it.
It’s not like Sunday’s 3-2 win over Buffalo was a thing of beauty that’s going to propel them on some Blackhawkian winning streak – although you never know what the butterfly effect can do in the sport of hockey – but it was a start, a necessary start – a season-saving start.
So, why not celebrate it for a few minutes in an old way – one that garnered so much publicity during their time on the HBO documentary 24/7: Road to the Winter Classic.
I was told by someone who would know, that the request to switch songs from Redfoo’s “Bring out the Bottles” back to “Knock Knock” was made by two people – Claude Giroux and Scott Hartnell.
That’s part of team leadership, eh?
I tried to ask both of them about it after the game, and neither really wanted to talk about it – probably because it might screw with the karma of the song, and you know how superstitious hockey players are – but both did acknowledge that it wasn’t an accidental change.
“It wasn’t me,” Giroux said with a knowing smile. “It was just a team thing.”
I followed up with Hartnell and he had a similar smirk on his face when he said, “It wasn’t just me… it was a few of the guys who requested the change.”
When I told him that after I posted it on Twitter that it had a bigger positive response from the fans than anything involving the game, he laughed and said, “That’s the idea.”
I’m pretty sure he meant that the positive response was supposed to start in the locker room first and then filter out through the fan base, but it’s certain that this was a well-thought out plan by the players as another sign of an intended turn around.
When the conversation actually occurred, isn’t known for sure, but there’s nothing like starting a run of good luck.
Hey, if the Broad Street Bullies could have Kate Smith, why can’t the current collection of Flyers have Mac Miller?
Anyone take not of the game Zac Rinaldo had against Buffalo?
He played just 7:42 but in that time he drew five penalties on Sabres players, had five hits and three blocked shots and accrued 14 minutes in penalties, of which only two were deserved.
He now has 100 hits on the season, fifth most in the league. However, considering how low his average ice time is, and you average his hits out per 60 minutes, he leads the league by a wide margin at 32.6.
“He brings it every night,” Giroux said. “You can see that with Zac. I can’t remember one game that he didn’t come and show up and play. He has our back. He goes out there and he hits hard. Some guys hit hard but he just runs through guys. I think we’re pretty lucky to have him on our side.”
Ilya Bryzgalov picked up his third assist of the season yesterday. That ties him with Evgeni Nabokov for the league-lead in points among goalies. No other goalie has more than one point.
By comparison, Bryzgalov has more assists (three) then former Flyer and L.A. Kings forward Jeff Carter (two).
Now if we can just get Bryz to score 17 goals like Carter… then we’d have a real story….
To contact Anthony SanFilippo email email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @AnthonySan37