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Steve Mason Shuts Out Vancouver As The Flyers Continue To Roll

mason-shutout

It’s Friday. Steve Mason has a shutout at the first ever Barstool At The Flyers event. Michal Neuvirth currently has the league’s best save percentage. Voracek is contributing. The Flyers are 7-2-1 in their last 10 games. They are 9-4-3 since Gostisbehere was called up from Lehigh Valley. And oh yeah, its’ Friday. I think this has us all feeling a little like Claude at the moment right now.

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Stone Cold Steve Mason With A Save of the Year Nominee

Last night was Steve Mason’s first start in 4 games after Michal Neuvirth took over the last 3. Here’s the thing. The Flyers have two VERY good goaltenders. The city of Philadelphia hasn’t had a certified lock in the net since the days of Bernie Parent. I have no doubt in my mind right now that Michal Neuvirth is the best back up in the NHL. But that’s exactly what he is. A backup. The starting position still belongs to Mason and it was great to see him solidify that last night. He stopped 36 of 36 shots, and none of them were as pretty as this absolute robbery he committed on Alex Edler. But that’s not to say the Canucks didn’t have plenty more opportunities to run away with this game. Sure, they’ve been a snake bitten club for much of the season so far. But Mason was playing out of his mind and especially kept this game under control early on in the first period. The quickest way to end all the media’s bullshit “goalie controversy” talk is to go out there and keep that goose egg on the board for the opposing team. The beat writers can all shove that goalie controversy talk up their ass now.

Voracek – Couturier – Simmonds Continue To Impress

File this one away under Zone_Entry_Boner.MP4. You can’t really see it too well in the vine but that’s Jake Voracek on the give-and-go with Wayne Simmonds here on this rush that led to the Flyers getting the much needed insurance goal to put this one away at 2-0. This is just Voracek’s 2nd game on the left wing and it looks like he’s been there all season long. This is exactly what you want to see out of this line. Get the puck deep in the offensive zone, get some pucks on the net and crash in for the garbage. I honestly can’t remember the last time I saw a shift with Simmonds and Couturier that they haven’t spent extended time in the offensive zone. They’re playing tough, they’re playing fast, their puck protection has been incredible, and now with Voracek on their left wing they are a serious threat every time they’re out on the ice. Couple that with the fact that Schenn and Raffl have been playing well together with Giroux on that top line and all of a sudden the Flyers’ top 6 looks a helluva lot better right now than it did heading into the season.

Speaking of Voracek, I LOVE seeing him put random Twitter trolls on blast after the game last night. This is the type of shit we need more of from Jake. Straight savage mode here.

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And you know what? He’s 100% right (at least for now). Gudas has been playing a really solid brand of hockey since returning from his 3-game suspension. He’s kept his physicality up but hasn’t been taking too many runs at guys that gets him in trouble and out of position. I think playing with Del Zotto really keeps him in check and the two have become a solid pair together. But Del Zotto can get caught pinching in the offensive zone a little too much at times which forces Gudas to play a little more conservatively and hang back a bit instead of trying to clobber someone breaking out of the zone and ending up with another hearing with the DoPS.

Luke Schenn is healthy again and will most likely be back in the lineup for the Flyers next game. Like I said, Del Zotto and Gudas have been playing very well together. I thought Evgeny Medvedev had one of his better games of the season last night and obviously you can’t scratch the Ghost Bear. So yeah, I guess that makes Schultz the odd man out here which means the Flyers blueline can only get better. Things are looking up for the Orange and Black.

– Real quick sidenote on Vancouver’s Alex Burrows who has been a cock sucker in the league for quite a while now… If you haven’t read it by now, former NHLer Patrick O’Sullivan wrote a great piece for The Players’ Tribune in which he detailed how abusive his father was growing up. It’s a tough read to get through but I think it’s a real important one. Well just in case you needed any more reason to hate Alex Burrows and the rest of the Vancouver Canucks, there’s this tweet that O’Sullivan fired out yesterday.

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Didn’t think this was worthy of it’s own blog but I just didn’t want it to go unnoticed that Alex Burrows is one of the biggest pieces of shit in the NHL.

– Thanks a lot to all the Stoolies who came out last night for Barstool at the Rink. For the first test run, I thought it was a huge success. We ate a lot of food. We drank a lot of beer. We saw the Flyers get a W and nobody died. Can’t really ask for much more. Hopefully we’ll have another one of these in a couple of months and it’ll be on a Saturday so more people can make it out. And hopefully we’ll have a few more (read: any) shirts up in the store by that point as well. As long as Big Steve makes it back out again though it’ll be a great time.

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@BarstoolJordie