Are the Flyers Going to Fire Coach Craig Berube?

Craig Berube press conference

Are Craig Berube’s days as Flyers coach numbered?

The team’s beat writers have become a Greek chorus on the subject:

Things have gotten so bad the players are actually defending their coach and blaming themselves. “[Berube] has given us a game plan and we’re not sticking to it in any form,” goalie Steve Mason said after Saturday’s loss. “We’re letting down Chief. We’re letting down ourselves and the Flyers organization’s reputation as a whole. This is not what we’re supposed to be known for.”

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Top 28 Philadelphia Sports GIFs of the Year

It was not a good year for Philadelphia sports. The Eagles lost a playoff game a few days into the new year, and the only other Philadelphia team to make the playoffs was the Flyers — who lost in the first round. This fall’s Eagles started 9-3 and missed the playoffs, the Sixers gutted their roster intentionally in order to be bad and the Union missed a wide open net in the final minutes and lost in extra time of the U.S. Open Cup. And the Wings moved and became the New England Black Wolves! Ugh.

But it was a good year for sports GIFs. One was Twitter’s introduction of inline GIFs in tweets. Never before was it so easy (for me, at least) to share stupid little sports moments with the world instantly. It became so easy to share GIFs one of mine was retweeted an obscene amount of times.

The Buccaneers’ Danny Lansanah preventing the Steelers Le’Veon Bell from making a first down gesture was undoubtedly the sports GIF of the year. But there’s no way to connect this to Philadelphia — Lansanah went to Harrisburg, which as close as I can get it — so it will have to remain outside the scope of this column.

Despite the bad year for Philadelphia sports, there was no shortage of great sports GIFs. If this sounds familiar, it’s pretty much the same spiel I did in 2012, when I last did this feature. It has not been a great few years for Philly sports. But the GIFs this year were, perhaps, better than ever. Presenting the best ones I made in 2014.

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Flyers Goalie Makes History in Comeback Win

Flyers goalie Rob Zepp became the oldest goalie to win his NHL debut since 1926 as the Philadelphia Flyers rallied for a 4-3 overtime win over the Winnipeg Jets last night. Zepp turned 33 in September.

The Flyers trailed, 3-1, in the third period, but a pair of goals from Vincent Lecavalier — just his third and fourth of the year — tied it for Philly. After Claude Giroux knocked the puck away from the Jets’ Dustin Byfuglien, Jakub Voracek scored just 10 seconds into overtime to give the Flyers their first overtime win since October 28th.

Zepp, 33,a career minor leaguer, made his first NHL start due to two reasons: Top goalie Steve Mason injured his back in practice last week, and the Flyers were playing the second game of a back-to-back on Sunday. Ray Emery played in the Flyers’ 7-4 win on Saturday.

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The Flyers Are Worried They Could Get the Mumps

Though they beat the Devils last night, the Flyers have struggled to a 10-13-5 record this year. How could things get worse? How about if the team were infected by the mumps!

There’s currently an outbreak of mumps in the NHL. (“The recent outbreak of mumps has emerged as one of the most bizarre yet compelling storylines of the 2014-15 NHL season,” ESPN reports, which makes hockey sound pretty boring if the mumps outbreak is among the most compelling stories.) The mumps outbreak started with the Anaheim Ducks, then spread to the Minnesota Wild — where five players caught it — as well as the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils. Eleven NHL players have caught the mumps this year.

The Devils were actually missing two players who have the mumps last night in their 4-1 loss to the Flyers.

The Flyers are taking precautions to avoid a mumps outbreak.

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Flyers Lose on Last-Second Heartbreaker


San Jose Sharks left wing Matt Nieto (83) scores the game-winning goal during the third period against the Philadelphia Flyers, Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2014, in San Jose, Calif.

On Monday, Flyers chairman Ed Snider told the Inquirer he’d “never seen anything like it in all the years I’ve been in hockey.” Except on their first line, the Flyers weren’t scoring.

On Tuesday, the Flyers weren’t exactly inspired by the team owner’s words: They lost to the Sharks, 2-1, on a San Jose goal with 11.5 seconds left. It was the Flyers fifth straight loss.

The Flyers are now 8-13-3 — they’ve lost two-thirds of the games they’ve played this season. They are 1-8-1 in their last 10.

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Forbes: Flyers 7th-Most Valuable Team in NHL

Comcast has a few quirky items in its portfolio. Comcast Ventures backs a sports gambling site. Comcast owns theme parks based on a fictional boy wizard. The company also owns a ticketing company that is worse than Ticketmaster.

But the strangest business Comcast owns has to be the Philadelphia Flyers, a hockey team that usually does pretty well — but hasn’t won the Stanley Cup in almost 40 years, and sometimes still seems to be stuck in the 1970s. But not in how much the team is worth! Yesterday, Forbes posted its annual valuations of NHL teams, and the Flyers are the 7th-most valuable team in professional hockey.

Forbes values the Flyers at $625 million, based on revenue of $136 million last season and an operating income of $11 million.

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Former Flyers Coach Pat Quinn Dies at 71

Members of the Philadelphia Flyers Alumni team, from the left, Bill Barber, Eric Lindros, Bob Clarke and coach Pat Quinn (standing) on the bench during the Winter Classic Alumni hockey game with the New York Rangers Alumni team, Saturday, Dec. 31, 2011 in Philadelphia.  AP | Tom Mihalek

Members of the Philadelphia Flyers Alumni team, from the left, Bill Barber, Eric Lindros, Bob Clarke and coach Pat Quinn (standing) on the bench during the Winter Classic Alumni hockey game with the New York Rangers Alumni team, Saturday, Dec. 31, 2011 in Philadelphia.

Former Philadelphia Flyers coach Pat Quinn, who led the Flyers to an NHL-record 35-game unbeaten streak in 1980, has died after a long illness. He was 71.

Quinn — known as “The Big Irishman” — was a popular figure in hockey circles. He played seven years in the NHL as a defenseman in the late 1960s and ’70s. His first head coaching job was with the Flyers; he replaced Fred Shero late in the 1978-79 season. In the 1979-80 season, Quinn led the Flyers on their incredible streak: After losing its second game of the year, the team went 25-0-10 in its next 35 games.

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It Was a Miserable Night for Philadelphia Sports

Philadelphia Flyers goalie Steve Mason (35) reacts against the New York Rangers during the first period at Madison Square Garden on November 19, 2014.

Philadelphia Flyers goalie Steve Mason (35) reacts against the New York Rangers during the first period at Madison Square Garden on November 19, 2014.

It was not a good night to be a Philadelphia sports fan.

First off, the Sixers lost. That’s not necessarily news, but this was a game they might have been able to win! They led the hated Celtics by as many as nine points in the first quarter, but eventually lost 101-90. The record for most losses to start a season is 18. The Sixers are 0-11.

Meanwhile, Tony Wroten fired back at Suns guard Eric Bledsoe, who said the University of Kentucky basketball team would beat the Sixers this year. I see no reason we can’t make this exhibition happen — it might be a chance for the 76ers to actually get a win.

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Alla Spina has Flyers Game Deal


If you’re looking for plans for tonight’s Flyers game versus the Oilers, Alla Spina is offering good food and a good deal. The Italian gastropub will be offering $3 cheeseburger sliders all night. As for booze, get a pint of Victory Brewing Company’s Halfway IPA for just another $3 from 4:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Alla Spina [Foobooz]



Porn Star: Flyers Defenseman Is “Most Annoying Texter”


Porn star Lisa Ann — the star of political porn parody Who’s Nailin’ Paylin? as well as a 2011 inductee into the Legends of Erotica Hall of Fame — went on a bit of a rant about Flyers defenseman Michael Del Zotto yesterday morning on her Twitter account.

Lisa Ann, who has also recently been in the company of Notre Dame wide receiver Justin Brent, said the Flyers defenseman is the “most annoying texter” she’s ever encountered and frequently asked her to set him up with women when Del Zotto was on the road. Per her Twitter, Lisa Ann doesn’t “do the [boyfriend] thing” due to her line of work.

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