It has not been a fun year for new Flyer Vincent Lecavalier. Once a long-standing captain of the Tampa Bay Lightning, his contract became a boat anchor under a new CBA and a constricted salary cap. Thus, his time as a full-time Floridian came to an end.
Suitors abounded for this man's services after news of his release. Lecavalier, a first overall pick back in 1998, and once described as the "Michael Jordan of hockey," had a spot on many rosters across the NHL at a bit of a subdued monetary rate.
Flyers GM Paul Holmgren disregarded this, became the highest bidder, and signed a five-year pact worth $22.5 million. 14 goals, 12 assists and 49 games later, fan impatience hit a crescendo when he went long stretches with nary a point to show for it. In a time where nobody was scoring, Lecavalier scored five of his goals during that span.
There was some concern on whether or not Ray Emery and Andrej Meszaros would be rusty having not played in a while.
They both quieted those concerns on Saturday against Calgary. Emery's 32-save effort held the Flames to a flicker as the Flyers went on to win, 2-1.
Emery made his first start since Jan. 25, a 6-1 drubbing to Boston in which he was pulled. Meszaros found himself in the lineup for the first time in a few games despite the play of Erik Gustafsson, and earned an assist.
I tying goal in the final minutes looked eerily familiar to Tuesday's game.
But failure to get the second point in the shootout ended the Flyers bid at a second straight comeback win as they lost 4-3 to the Predators on Thursday. They walked away with the loser point, which dropped their record to 24-19-5 and keeping them in a tie for second place with the Rangers.
Getting that first point, though, showed the fighting nature this Flyers team has had in recent games. Third period comebacks have become a dangerous aspect of the Flyers recent play.
It certainly could not have been made any tougher on Tuesday night, but the Philadelphia Flyers ended a six-game road trip with five wins, outlasting the New Jersey Devils 3-2 in an overtime victory.
Brayden Schenn sent the road warriors home happy with the game winner.
Wayne Simmonds dug a loose puck off the half boards, sending the puck to Nicklas Grossmann. The Swede fooled everyone with a fake half-slapper, sending a slap pass to a wide open Schenn who deposited the puck past a diving Martin Brodeur.
Schenn ended the night not only with a nasty gash to his midsection from Danius Zubrus' skate, but he scored two points in this game. He has scored six points in his last four games.
(Photo: Brayden Schenn checks Danius Zubrus. Photo by Andy Marlin/NHLI via Getty Images)
John Russo and Jordan Kuhns made their picks for midseason report card awards. On some categories they agreed rather civilly. But on others, the disagreement couldn't have been any more clear.
That is why they had to put their differences aside and work together to bring to you some of the Flyers' studs, duds, and surprises among other things through the first 41 games of the 2013-14 season.
At 20-17-4, and second place in the Metro Division with 44 points, there were certainly a lot to choose from.
(Photo: Steve Mason has been the Flyers best player in the first half. Photo by John Russo/The Checking Line)
For a guy who was a healthy scratch just five weeks ago, Michael Raffl has made the most of the opportunities presented to him since returning to the lineup on Nov. 27.
In fact, December may have been the best month in the 25-year-old’s professional hockey career.
During the final calendar month of 2013, Raffl notched 10 points (2 G, 8 A) in 14 games played, including his first career NHL goal against Ottawa on Dec. 9. Prior to the beginning of December, Raffl had just one point in 14 games played.