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WHC WRAP UP: Six Flyers win medals at World Championships

Canada settles for silver, Provorov wins bronze with Russia

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

In one of the most memorable finishes to a World Championship gold-medal game, it was Sweden who took a 2-1 shootout victory over Canada on Sunday to win their first title since 2013.

As a result, five Flyers on Team Canada: Sean Couturier, Claude Giroux, Travis Konecny, Brayden Schenn and Wayne Simmonds all add silver medals to their international resume.

The Swedes held off a Canada rally in the third period in the win. Tampa defenseman, Victor Hedman got Sweden on the board first with a shorthanded goal in the second period, but Buffalo's Ryan O'Reilly scored the equalizer early in the third period to force overtime and the eventual shootout.

Nicklas Backstrom and Oliver Ekman-Larsson scored in the shootout, while Henrik Lundqvist stopped all four Canadian shooters to take gold. Lundqvist stopped 42 of 43 shots in the win, while Canadian goaltender, Calvin Pickard, made 40 saves in the loss.

Of the five Flyers, Giroux led with 21:55 of ice time, while Sean Couturier had 21:04 followed by rookie Travis Konecny with 16:57.

Giroux, who served as captain of Canada, ends the tournament with six points (2g-4a) and a +6 rating having appeared in all 10 games. He now adds a silver medal to go along with his gold medal in 2015 at World Championships.

Konecny recorded eight points, all assists, to go along with a +6 rating in his first World Championships. His eight assists tied for second on Team Canada and tied for fifth among all players in the tournament.

Couturier (1g-1a) and Simmonds (2a) each had two points, while Brayden Schenn's lone goal of the tournament was a game-winning tally.

Also representing Hockey Canada in the tournament were Flyers GM Ron Hextall, who served as GM for Canada in the tournament for the first time. As was also the case for Flyers head coach, Dave Hakstol, who served as an assistant coach of the tournament to Tampa's Jon Cooper.

 

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TODAY IN FLYERS HISTORY: MAY 20

PRIMEAU, GAGNE SPARK COMEBACK GAME 6 WIN VS. BOLTS: MAY 20, 2004

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

Trailing the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-3 late in the third period of Game 6 of a classic 2004 Eastern Conference Finals series, the Philadelphia Flyers faced playoff elimination. Enter Flyers captain Keith Primeau.

Enjoying a spectacular playoff run marked by one clutch goal or assist after another, Primeau virtually willed the Flyers to tie the game. First, he won a puck battle in the corner and got the puck out to defenseman Mattias Timander at the left point. Collecting the loose rebound of Timander's shot near the left post, Primeau quickly wheeled around behind the net and stuffed the puck home past goalie Nikolai Khabibulin to knot the game at 18:11. The orange-clad home crowd went bonkers.

Overtime was grueling and tense. Finally, with time ticking down under two minutes, Jeremy Roenick won a battle (while down on his knees) behind the net and shoveled the puck to Simon Gagne in the right corner. Gagne then sent the puck back around behind the net to Primeau, who skated out front. With Roenick moving toward the left slot, Primeau sent a pass to Roenick. With a defender in close proximity, Roenick spotted Gagne getting open near the right post. An accurate Roenick pass and a quick finish by Gagne later at the 18:18 mark, and the Flyers had a 5-4 win.

Both Primeau and Gagne scored twice in the game. Each player tallied in the first period to erased an early 1-0 deficit. Sami Kapanen notched a second-period goal for Philly. However, a pair of goals by Vincent Lecavalier and Ruslan Fedotenko provided Tampa with the 4-3 lead they took into the latter stages of the third period.

Tampa Bay went on to win Game 7 on home ice by a 2-1 score. Primeau, who by now was primarily used as a shutdown defensive center and had tallied just 22 points (seven goals, 15 assists) in 54 games during the regular season, finished his magical postseason run with 16 points (nine goals, seven assists) in 18 games.

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WHC UPDATE: Five Flyers, Canada to play for gold

Sweden downs Finland, 4-1, to set up gold medal Sunday

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHL / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

Trailing 2-0 after 40 minutes of play, the Canadians tallied four unanswered goals to beat Russia by a 4-2 score in the first semifinal of the 2017 IIHF World Championships in Cologne, Germany.

After Canada scored an early power-play goal in the third period to get within one, Flyers rookie Travis Konecny made a beautiful set up pass into the slot to Nathan MacKinnon, who scored the equalizer with just under five minutes to go in the game.

Konecny now has eight points, all of them assists, in the tournament thus far which is tied for the team lead in helpers (with MacKinnon) and is also tied for third among all players in the tournament.

Canada fired 38 shots on net compared to 28 from Russia, but also out-shot the Russians by a 19 to 5 margin in the third period to rally.

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WHC UPDATE: Seven in the Semis

Heated rivalries take center stage for semifinal showdowns

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

The World Championships enter the final weekend of the year and seven Flyers are in the mix for gold with three of the four countries still standing.

FINLAND IS IN

In the first Quarterfinal, USA took on Valtteri Filppula and Finland, who walked away with a 2-0 shutout victory despite being outshot, 26-20, including 12-5 in the third period. 

Filppula recorded one shot on goal, which came off a 2-on-1 rush with Sebastien Aho, but was denied by USA goaltender, Jimmy Howard. 

Harri Sateri earned his first shutout of the tournament for the Fins, while Filppula logged 17:18 of ice time in the win.

 

SWEDES BEAT THE SWISS

Finland will now take on their heated rivals in Sweden, who earned a 3-1 win over Switzerland, who went unbeaten in regulation (5-0-2) in the preliminary round.

Joining the team from his playoff exit, goaltender Henrik Lundqvist stopped 26 of 27 shots while Toronto Maple Leafs forward William Nylander posted a goal and an assist in the victory.

The game was the only one in which no members of the Flyers were represented.

Game time between Finland and Sweden is 1:15 p.m. ET on Saturday afternoon and can been seen on the NHL Network.

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Philadelphia Flyers to Host Ice Girl Auditions

The Philadelphia Flyers will host open auditions for their 2017-18 Ice Girls on Sunday, August 6 at 2 p.m. at the Virtua Center Flyers Skate Zone in Voorhees, NJ.

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

The Philadelphia Flyers will host open auditions for their 2017-18 Ice Girls on Sunday, August 6 at 2 p.m. at the Virtua Center Flyers Skate Zone in Voorhees, NJ.

The club is seeking energetic candidates with a love for the game of hockey in both skating and non-skating roles on the squad. The audition process is a one-day event consisting of public speaking evaluations, individual interviews, and skating drills or dance routines, based on which role the candidate is auditioning for.

Interested candidates must be 18 years of age, have a positive and outgoing personality, possess strong interpersonal skills, have a flexible schedule that can accommodate all 2017-18 Flyers home games, and have a solid means of transportation.

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TODAY IN FLYERS HISTORY: MAY 19

FLYERS BECOME 1ST EXPANSION TEAM TO WIN STANLEY CUP: MAY 19, 1974

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

"Thirteen seconds left in the game. Ten seconds," intoned legendary Flyers play-by-play announcer Gene Hart with the excitement in his voice rising with each word.

"Orr shoves it down the ice. Parent makes the save. Ladies and gentlemen, the Flyers are going to win the Stanley Cup! The Flyers win the Stanley Cup! The Flyers win the Stanley Cup! The Flyers have won the Stanley Cup!"

The afternoon of May 19, 1974 will forever hold a sacred place in Philadelphia sports history as the Flyers defeated the powerhouse Boston Bruins, 1-0 in Game 6 of the 1974 Stanley Cup Final. In so doing, the Flyers became the first expansion team to capture the most coveted and storied trophy in team sports.

 Flyers Hall of Fame center Rick MacLeish, one season removed from becoming the first member of the Flyers' 50-goal club, tipped a point shot from Andre "Moose" Dupont past Boston goalie Gilles Gilbert for a power play goal at 14:48 of the first period. The skinniest of leads held up the rest of the way as Bernie Parent stopped everything the Bruins could throw at him.

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TODAY IN FLYERS HISTORY: May 18

Flyers, Leighton Blank Montreal Again: May 18, 2010

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

After making NHL history with their second-round comeback against the Boston Bruins, the Philadelphia Flyers showed no signs of physical fatigue or mental letdown in the Eastern Conference Final against the Montreal Canadiens. The Flyers opened the series with a 6-0 blowout win in Game One.

Two nights later, the Flyers did it again, shutting out the Canadiens for the second straight time. This time, the score was 3-0. Goals by Danny Briere (power play), Simon Gagne (power play) and Ville Leino led the way offensively. Leino also assisted on the Gagne goal. Philadelphia closed the game out with authority, outshooting Montreal by a 10-4 margin in the third period

After notching a 28-save shutout in the series opener, Michael Leighton stopped all 30 shots fired on his net in Game Two. His best work came in the opening period as he was called upon to make 16 saves. Montreal goaltender Jaroslav Halak turned back 20 of 23.

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Second Overall proves First Rate: The 2000s and present day

Part 3 takes a modern look at how second overall picks have shaped franchises

by Bill Meltzer @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

Bill Meltzer wraps up his series looking at the second overall pick and how it has shaped a franchise by examining the early part of the century, how the game has changed and how players have adapted and made an impact in recent years.

The 2000s (Eric Staal, Evgeni Malkin, Drew Doughty, Victor Hedman)

The 2003 NHL Draft, widely regarded among the two or three deepest classes in Draft history, saw the Carolina Hurricanes select big-framed Peterborough Petes center Eric Staal with the second overall the pick. The first of the four Staal brothers to play in the NHL, Eric spent the first decade of his career with Carolina and was a force on their 2005-06 Stanley Cup winning team (45 goals, 100 points in the regular season, 28 points in 25 playoff games). He succeeded Rod Brind'Amour as the Hurricanes' captain in January 2010.

Staal experienced a career revival in 2016-17 as a member of the Minnesota Wild, for whom he notched 28 goals and 65 points. In 1,011 career NHL games to date, he has racked up 353 goals and 846 points.

The next Draft, dubbed "the year of the Russian," saw the Washington Capitals select Alex Ovechkin first overall and the Pittsburgh Penguins choose Evgeni Malkin with the second pick. Coming over to North America in 2006, Malkin formed a superstar one-two punch with 2005 first-overall pick Sidney Crosby. 

Malkin collected the Calder Trophy as NHL Rookie of the year in 2006-07. Subsequently, he won the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL's leading scorer in 2008-09 and followed it up with a Conn Smythe Trophy (playoff MVP) as the Penguins won the Stanley Cup. Malkin won his second Art Ross Trophy in 2011-12 and he also collected both the Hart Trophy and the peer-selected Ted Lindsay Award as league MVP. Through the 2016-17 season, he has 832 career points (328 goals, 504 assists) in the NHL.

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TODAY IN FLYERS HISTORY: May 17

Opening Game of '87 Final: May 17, 1987

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

The dynastic Edmonton Oilers opened the 1987 Stanley Cup Final with a 4-2 win on home ice against the Philadelphia Flyers in Game One. However, the Flyers played the Oilers evenly for about 50 of the

The game was tied, 1-1, entering the third period. Wayne Gretzky and Brian Propp traded off late first-period and late-second period goals respectively. Unfortunately for the Flyers, Edmonton pulled away in the final stanza.

Glenn Anderson (11th goal of the playoffs) scored in the opening shift of the third period. Hall of Famers Paul Coffey and Jari Kurri (11th) then added to the lead before the period was even half finished. Rick Tocchet responded to the Kurri goal just 1:07 later and the Flyers put up a fight until the end, but the gap had grown too wide.

Philadelphia outshot Edmonton for the game, 31-26. Grant Fuhr stopped 29 of 31 shots to earn the win. Ron Hextall denied 22 of 26 shots. 

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TODAY IN FLYERS HISTORY: May 16

Poulin Shorthander, Lindbergh Shutout Lift Flyers to Final: May 16, 1985

by PhiladelphiaFlyers.com @NHLFlyers / http://www.philadelphiaflyers.com

The Flyers earned their fifth trip to the Stanley Cup Final by prevailing over the offensively potent Quebec Nordiques in six hard fought games in the 1985 Wales Conference Final. Philadelphia skated to a 3-0 win at the Spectrum in the clinching game in May 16, 1985.

The pivotal play came at 2:01 of the second period. The Flyers were clinging to a 1-0 lead provided by a first-period goal by Rick Tocchet but were in penalty trouble. With Joe Paterson and Brian Propp in the penalty box, the Nords had a 5-on-3 power play for one minute, 23 seconds. Suddenly, Flyers captain Dave Poulin intercepted a puck near the defensive blueline and found himself with a clean breakaway on diminutive (5-foot-8) butterfly style goaltender Mario Gosselin.

"I had way too much time to think," Poulin recalls. "All series we had been preaching, 'Shoot high on Gosselin.'"

That's exactly what Poulin did, and he made no mistake as he elevated the puck over the goalie and sent the sold-out Spectrum into a frenzy.

Vezina Trophy winning goaltender Pelle Lindbergh took it from there. The Nordiques became increasingly frustrated and disheartened, especially after Doug Crossman tacked on a power play goal.

As the game wore on, Mike Keenan's Flyers dominated. Philly would up outshooting the Nordiques by a 36-15 margin to clinch the Prince of Wales Trophy and move on to play the Edmonton Oilers in the Stanley Cup Final.

 

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