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Preview: Eagles go coast to coast for matchup with Chargers

By: Jesse Larch, Sports Talk Philly editor 

The Eagles will play against the Los Angeles Chargers for the first time since 2013 this Sunday at StubHub Center. In the short history between these two teams the Chargers lead the series 7-4. The Chargers have won the last two meetings and the Eagles last victory came way back in 2005. 

Of the 106 players on the two rosters, there are 11 players remaining for either team from that 2013 meeting. Those players are Philip Rivers, Keenan Allen, Antonio Gates, Jahleel Addae, Corey Liuget, Nick Foles, Zach Ertz, Brent Celek, Najee Goode, Mychal Kendricks, and Fletcher Cox - who will not dress this weekend. 

That is a drawn out way of saying that history means nothing this Sunday. 

Continue reading "Preview: Eagles go coast to coast for matchup with Chargers" »


Larry Bowa: My 'No. 1 priority' is to remain with Phillies

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Will Larry Bowa remain in the Phillies organization after the 2017 season concludes? (Frank Klose/SportsTalkPhilly)

By Tim Kelly, Sports Talk Philly editor  

General manager Matt Klentak said on Friday night's telecast that while the Philadelphia Phillies next manager could want to retain some of Pete Mackanin's current staff, he understands that not all the coaches are going to wait around for the that possibility. So he told them that as of Monday, they are all free-agents. 

That includes Larry Bowa, the team's bench coach, who is finishing up his 28th season as a member of the Phillies, having played, managed and coached across two stints for the Phillies. Bowa told the collective media Friday night, which included Matt Breen of The Philadelphia Inquirer, that he hopes he's involved with the organization in some role for a 29th season: 

Continue reading "Larry Bowa: My 'No. 1 priority' is to remain with Phillies" »


Managerial Candidates That Aren't Likely for Phillies: Scioscia and Showalter

By Tim Kelly, Sports Talk Philly editor  

Friday, the Philadelphia Phillies announced that manager Pete Mackanin won't return as manager in 2018. Earlier, we took a look at 10 potential candidates that could replace him. Two names that people have speculated about are Baltimore Orioles manager Buck Showalter and Los Angeles Angels manager Mike Scioscia. Neither, in my estimation, are especially good fits. 

Continue reading "Managerial Candidates That Aren't Likely for Phillies: Scioscia and Showalter " »


10 Potential Managerial Candidates for the Phillies

By Tim Kelly, Sports Talk Philly editor  

With this afternoon's news that Pete Mackanin will not return for his third full season of managing the Phillies in 2018, general manager Matt Klentak, president Andy MacPhail and partner John Middleton will now embark on a managerial search. Here's a list of possible managerial candidates - not necessarily in order of likelihood - from all different backgrounds. 

Continue reading "10 Potential Managerial Candidates for the Phillies " »


Sixers' Joel Embiid participates in half court 5-on-5 practice, Okafor does as well

 

If you heard a loud sigh of relief from the cubicle next to you at work today, your co-worker probably saw that "The Process" himself did something this afternoon that he hasn't done in a long, long time. 

According to CSN's Jessica Camerato, Joel Embiid participated in "half court 5-on-5 segments" at practice this afternoon.

 

This is obviously huge news, since Embiid has not been permitted to practice 5-0n-5 at any extent since he had “minor" arthroscopic surgery on his left knee back on March 24th.

The fourth year big man, who's only played 31 games in his NBA career, has been in talks with the Sixers for a contract extension before he becomes a restricted free agent next summer. The fact that Embiid is beginning to ease his way back into the groove of practicing 5-on-5 could potentially help move the negotiation process between the team and the former Kansas big at a much faster rate.  

In other news, Jahill Okafor was a full participant in practice today. Okafor has been practicing at 5-on-5 for a few straight days now which bodes well for both him and his stock going forward.

Due to the glut of big men on the roster and his awkward fit in Brett Brown's system, the team may look to deal Okafor before the season begins. 

 


Pete Mackanin is Out as Phillies Manager

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The Phillies will have a new look in 2018.  On Friday, a few days after Phillies manager Pete Mackanin expressed publicly doubts that he would remain as the Phillies manager, the club announced a move.  Mackanin will not remain as Phillies manager, but instead will work in the front office.

A press release from the Phillies reads:

The Phillies will not retain Pete Mackanin as manager following the 2017 season, Vice President & General Manager Matt Klentak announced today. Mackanin will remain as manager through the season's final three games and has agreed to a contract extension to serve as Special Assistant to the General Manager for 2018 and beyond.

 

The move creates many questions with few answers given just yet.

The move also puts the status of the coaching staff in doubt.  The major league coaching staff isfilled with former Phillies players.   Mickey Morandini, Matt Stairs, Rick Kranitz, and John McLaren all joined the coaching staff after Mackanin was named manager.

Holdovers from Ryne Sandberg's staff include pitching coach Bob McClure, bench coach Larry Bowa, and third base coach Juan Samuel.

Of those named, Bowa likely would be offered a lifetime role in the organization, such as those held by Charlie Manuel and Dallas Green in recent years.  Bowa was also previously offered a chance to be a broadcaster for the Phillies, but declined to remain coaching.   The radio booth has room for some help with the reduced role of Larry Andersen.

More info to come.


Flyers Roster Update: Battles Heat Up as Final Cuts Approach

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(Kevin Durso/Sports Talk Philly)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

We're in the homestretch of the Flyers preseason. The team is off on Friday after their 5-1 win over the Boston Bruins on Thursday night and will return to the ice for practice on Saturday before their preseason finale on Sunday.

By Monday, the team will fly to San Jose ahead of Wednesday's season opener, so the final roster will be decided somewhere in the next 72 hours.

The Flyers really don't have many cuts left, with 25 healthy players on the roster. Seemingly, there are just one forward and one defenseman left to be cut. From a fan's perspective, it may be fairly simple to narrow down the two players not making the final roster of 23. But with so many prospects still up at camp, will the Flyers carry upwards of six rookies on the team, or will some of them head back to the minors for extra seasoning in the AHL with the Phantoms?

Here is the latest on some of the camp roster battles.

Continue reading "Flyers Roster Update: Battles Heat Up as Final Cuts Approach" »


Phillies, Mets to play in 2018 MLB Little League Classic

By Brandon Apter, Sports Talk Philly editor

In 2017, Major League Baseballl held their first Little League Classic game in Williamsport, Pennsylvania. Williamsport is home to the Little League World Series and the Phillies' Short Season 'A' affiliate, the Crosscutters. In year one of the classic, NL Central foes squared off as the Pirates took on the Cardinals. Major League Baseball announced that the second annual Little League Classic will feature the Phillies and the Mets on August 19, 2018 in Williamsport at Historic Bowman Field.

Continue reading "Phillies, Mets to play in 2018 MLB Little League Classic" »


Giancarlo Stanton passes Ryan Howard's mark of 58 home runs

By Tim Kelly, Sports Talk Philly editor  

It took 11 seasons, but someone has finally hit more home runs than Ryan Howard did in 2006, when his 58-home run season led him to the National League MVP. 

Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins hit his 58th and 59th home runs in the team's 7-1 win over the Atlanta Braves Thursday night: 

Continue reading "Giancarlo Stanton passes Ryan Howard's mark of 58 home runs " »


Flyers Beat Down Bruins 5-1

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(Kate Frese/SB Nation)

The Philadelphia Flyers needed to gear up for the regular season Thursday night and did so with style as they beat down the Boston Bruins 5-1.

By Dan Heaning, Sports Talk Philly staff writer 

The Philadelphia Flyers came into their seventh preseason game looking to get into regular season mode. The Orange and Black seemed more than ready as they handed the Boston Bruins a 5-1 beat down.

Nearly everything went right for the Flyers in this contest. The first line of Claude Giroux, Sean Couturier and Jake Voracek looked great as they combined for six points and had a hand in four of the Flyers five goals.

The second power play unit got things started as great puck movement from the point to Nolan Patrick allowed Couturier to swiftly find Travis Konecny in front of the net and beat Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask with a tap-in to put the Flyers up 1-0.

As the opening frame was expiring, Voracek extended the lead to two after collecting a Radko Gudas rebound that squirted pass a Boston player in front of the net which gave Voracek an open shot from the circle.

In the second period, Voracek sent a great east-west pass in the Bruins zone to Brandon Manning and the Philadelphia defender lifted it over Rask's shoulder to put the Flyers up 3-0.

Voracek and Couturier each finished with a goal and an assist while Giroux collected two assists as it appears this top line may stick around for Opening Night.

Young players like Patrick and Sam Morin provided more evidence that they belong on the roster as well. Morin showed great puck control and hands as he deked multiple Bruins defenders to set up Wayne Simmonds with a beautiful pass to give Philadelphia a 4-0 lead.

Couturier continued to excel during the power play as Konecny returned the favor from the first goal giving the centerman an easy goal in front of Malcolm Subban early in the final frame.

Aside from his assist on the power play, Patrick was just a goal away from a Gordie Howe hat trick as he dropped the gloves in the second stanza with David Krejci. After his scrap, Patrick was met with a chorus of cheers and the Philadelphia faithful chanting his name.

The game could have swung in a different direction though as the first period had more scoring but nothing that was allowed on the scoreboard. 

The Bruins thought they had two goals but the first was called back on a handpass as Brad Marchand received a pass up high from Patrice Bergeron. The Bruins star winger batted the chest-high puck to Anders Bjork, who deposited the puck past Alex Lyon. The goal was immediately waived off.

Simmonds thought he was going to open the scoring for the Flyers on the power play, but his tally was reversed as he tapped the puck above the crossbar.

The second took some more time to reverse. With 5:49 left in the first, Bruins defenseman Rob O'Gara sent a point snapshot on net which eeked by Lyon. However after Flyers head coach Dave Hakstol challenged the play for goaltender interference, it was determined that Jake DeBrusk prevented Lyon from making the stop.

Michal Neuvirth was set to start but due to illness served as the backup. Lyon made 31 saves in his last-minute, complete game starting effort. However, his two-period shutout attempt was ruined in the final frame when Krejci sent a snap shot over Lyon's shoulder early in the period.

The Flyers will conclude their preseason with a 5 p.m. affair with the New York Islanders on Sunday. The game will be televised on The Comcast Network and the NHL Network.

Box Score

  1 2 3 T
Flyers 2 2 1 5
Bruins 0 0 1 1

Scoring Summary

1st Period

  • PHI Travis Konecny (3, 13:12)
  • PHI Jake Voracek (1, 19:49)

2nd Period

  • PHI Brandon Manning (1, 4:51)
  • PHI Wayne Simmonds (1, 8:46)

3rd Period

  • BOS David Krejci (1, :48)
  • PHI Sean Couturier (1, 4:06)