Previous month:
December 2019
Next month:
February 2020

Flyers Rally for Point, but Crosby Nets OT Winner for Penguins

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

There wasn't much different about the start to this game for the Flyers against the Penguins as the last one. The Flyers played a solid first period defensively and scored the first goal of the game. Just as it was 10 days ago, Jake Voracek had the opening tally, this time giving the Flyers the lead in the first period instead of the second.

But in the second period, the Flyers were issued a quick reminder that this was not going to be the same as last time. The Penguins flipped the switch, got the game tied, then added two more power-play goals quick to put the Flyers on the ropes.

The Flyers got a late goal in the second and tied the game early in the third, but after a dominant third period, needed overtime to settle this one. Everything was shaping up for the Flyers to continue to apply that pressure, when an early turnover in overtime gave the Penguins control and the old familiar Flyers nemesis struck again.

Sidney Crosby fired home the game-winning goal just 55 seconds into overtime to hand the Flyers a 4-3 loss in Pittsburgh on Friday night.

Continue reading "Flyers Rally for Point, but Crosby Nets OT Winner for Penguins" »


GJ Kinne Leaves Eagles Coaching Staff For Offensive Coordinator Position at Hawaii

Embed from Getty Images

By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Editor

It was just one year ago that the Eagles hired yet another of their former backup quarterbacks to be a part of their coaching staff.

Already, GJ Kinne is leaving Philadelphia again as he takes over the offensive coordinator position for Hawaii, the team announced on Twitter Friday.

Continue reading "GJ Kinne Leaves Eagles Coaching Staff For Offensive Coordinator Position at Hawaii" »


Flyers-Penguins: Game 51 Preview

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

It was 10 days ago that the Flyers last took the ice. On Friday night, they finally make their return from the All-Star break and bye week and get a familiar opponent.

The Flyers secured a 3-0 win 10 days ago against the Pittsburgh Penguins, and now will open up the second-half push to the playoffs by meeting the Penguins again, this time on the road.

Game time is 7 p.m.

Continue reading "Flyers-Penguins: Game 51 Preview" »


Sixers Continue Road Struggles In Loss Versus Hawks

By Kevin McCormick, Sports Talk Philly Editor

The Sixers kicked off a tough road stretch Thursday night with a game against the Hawks. This game featured three All-Stars with Joel Embiid and Trae Young who are starters, and Ben Simmons who was named an All-Star reserve before tip-off. 

Playing on the road has been an issue for the season all season and that struggle continued Thursday. The Sixers fell to the Hawks 127-111 and the Sixers are now 9-16 on the road this season. 

Trae Young showed everyone why he is an All-Star starter in this game. He had a double-double by the end of the first quarter and finished the night with 39 points and 18 assists (career-high). Young attempted 20 free throws in this game which was a big reason why he went on the scoring barrage he did. 

Shake Milton was the story for the Sixers in this game. He started for the third straight game and is making the most of his opportunity with Josh Richardson out. Milton posted a career-high in points with 27 and shot an effective 5/9 from three. 

Ben Simmons also dominated in this losing effort for the Sixers. He ended the game with 31 points, six rebounds, five assists, and four steals. 

Although they both finished with 21 points apiece, Joel Embiid and Tobias Harris had rather quiet nights in this game. This matchup seemed like a game where Embiid would dominate, but he looked like he just couldn’t seem to get himself going. 

It was not a good night for the Sixers’ reserves in this one. Raul Neto and Furkan Korkmaz have been two of the better players off the bench this year, but they struggled on Thursday. They finished a combined 0/13 from the floor and 0/6 from three. 

This was a bad game to drop as the Sixers wanted to keep the momentum rolling for this next stretch. The team will be back in action on Saturday to face the Boston Celtics. 

 


Inconsistencies That Need to Change for Flyers

By Jeff Quake, Sports Talk Philly staff writer 

Recently, the Philadelphia Flyers (27-17-6) have been on and off their game. Despite two victories over the Los Angeles Kings and the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Flyers still currently sit out of the playoff race. In their last 10 games, the Orange and Black are just 5-4-1, largely due to a horrible West coast trip in which they went 1-4-1.

Over this stretch of 10 games, several issues of inconsistency have been noticeable. They include the following: slow starts, turnovers, road play and the power play.

Continue reading "Inconsistencies That Need to Change for Flyers" »


Embiid Dominates In Emotional Return Versus Warriors

By Kevin McCormick, Sports Talk Philly Editor

After two days off the Sixers were back in action at home. Tuesday night they faced off against the Golden State Warriors in what was an emotional affair.

It was the first time either team had played since the tragic passing of NBA legend Kobe Bryant on Sunday. Both teams paid their respects to kick off the game. 

Prior to the game starting the arena had a 33 second moment of silence to honor Kobe. As that was the number he wore in High School playing at Lower Merion just outside of Philadelphia. 

The game was semi back and forth for most of the contest, but the Sixers were able to pull away in the end. They continue their dominance at home winning this game by a final score of 115 to 104. 

All eyes were on Joel Embiid, who made his return to the court after missing the previous nine games. He was permitted by Sixer great Bobby Jones to sport the number 24 tonight to honor his idol Kobe Bryant as the team previously retired the number.  

For missing nine games the All-Star starter didn’t look like he missed a beat. Embiid logged 26 minutes in the game and managed to put up a dominant 24 points and 10 rebounds. 

It was a team effort tonight from the Sixers. The team finished with six players in double-figures including Raul Neto who flirted with a career-high. 

Neto came out tonight and made a statement for his case of being the Sixers’ backup point guard. He was the Sixers' second-leading scorer in the game with 19 points. With 15 of those points coming in the second quarter where he seemed he couldn’t miss. 

All in all, this was a good win for the Sixers. They took care of business against a team they should have, and continue to look unbeatable at home.

This hot streak built much-needed momentum as they head on the road following Tuesday’s contest. In this road stretch, they will face top teams like Boston, Miami, and Milwaukee. Before that stretch, they will be back in action on Thursday to take on the Hawks in Atlanta.  


Flyers Youth Special Hockey Another Example Hockey is for Everyone

 

IMG_2219
The Flyers Youth Special Hockey team poses for a picture after playing against the Woodbridge Warriors Special Hockey organization on Saturday, Jan. 25, at SkateZone in Voorhees, NJ. (Kevin Durso/Sports Talk Philly)

By Kevin Durso, Sports Talk Philly editor 

While the Flyers and the NHL sat on break for All-Star weekend and the bye week, there was still a crowd gathered at the SkateZone in Voorhees on Saturday morning. With Flyers legend Bob “The Hound” Kelly behind the bench and legendary PA announcer Lou Nolan on providing goal announcements, it was an event that would have been fitting for Wells Fargo Center and any other top arena in the NHL.

To the young athletes on the ice, ranging from ages six to 20, it feels like the NHL. Players celebrate goals the same way with personality oozing out on full display. At the conclusion Saturday morning’s 40-minute contest between the Flyers Special Youth Hockey team and the Woodbridge Warriors Special Hockey organization, an 11-5 final for Woodbridge, the Warrior netminder threw his gloves in celebration. It looks like a scene from Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Final. For these kids, this is their Stanley Cup.

IMG_2078
Lou Nolan served as PA announcer for Saturday's Flyers Youth Special Hockey game. (Kevin Durso/Sports Talk Philly)

The score hardly matters though. For these kids, this is about proving that hockey really is for everyone and bringing the love of the game to the forefront.

The Flyers Youth Special Hockey program was founded in 2015, led by general manager Erica Hunter, to provide children with special needs, ranging from Autism to developmental delays, with the opportunity to be a part of a team. Many children with special needs are unable to play on mainstream teams in youth programs, and therefore struggle to find a place where they can play. Prior to the founding of this program, the closest special hockey program in the South Jersey area was in Mercer County.

IMG_2152
Flyers Youth Special Hockey forward Bubba Dawson (#48) scores a goal in Saturday's game against the Woodbridge Warriors. (Kevin Durso/Sports Talk Philly)

From humble beginnings, the Flyers Youth Special Hockey program began with just five kids at the start of the first season. By the end of the first season, they had a roster of 17 players. Today, 28 players get to suit up regularly for an opportunity they would not have without this program. So here they were, suiting up for another game where they get to skate and play hockey on the same ice surface where the Flyers practice.

The Flyers Youth Special Hockey program is one of 80 teams in the American Special Hockey Association (ASHA). Many of the teams have ties to their local NHL clubs, like the Flyers. 

Of course, a program like this that focuses on youth with special needs is nothing without the support and assistance of many volunteers. There are a number of adult volunteers and youth volunteers that support the program on and off the ice, helping to make sure the experience is a memorable one for all participants in the program. Add in an experienced coaching staff, led by head coach Mark Vonberg, creator of the Sports Unity Program in Marlton, and you see the total team effort that takes place to ensure these kids get to experience and learn the game of hockey and most importantly have fun doing it.

IMG_2144
Flyers Youth Special Hockey forward Turner Baugh celebrates after scoring a goal in Saturday's game against the Woodbridge Warriors. (Kevin Durso/Sports Talk Philly)

The Voorhees SkateZone has hosted several programs that provide opportunities like this. In addition to the Flyers Youth Special Hockey program, the Flyers announced an affiliation with the Flyers Warriors, a team consisting of former veterans with disabilities, during training camp this season. That program was formed and has grown substantially over the last year. The two teams will meet for a special game on Saturday, Feb. 15 at 8 a.m. in Voorhees that is sure to produce just as many lasting memories and prove once again that hockey is indeed for everyone.

You can certainly see that with these kids. For any developmental delays or disabilities they may have, the fundamentals of the game are very much understood. The energy of professional players is there, every player giving his or her all to help out teammates and improve their own game individually. And whatever successes come on the ice, whether it is a goal scored, a nice pass to a teammate or a great save in net, the emotion and excitement of just having the opportunity to do so is evident. 

IMG_2212
Players from the Flyers Youth Special Hockey team and Woodbridge Warriors Special Hockey organization shake hands following Saturday's game in Voorhees. (Kevin Durso/Sports Talk Philly)

We define hockey players by their toughness, their ability to overcome anything and find a way to achieve a goal. These kids may have their share of obstacles to overcome, but they passionately show that determination and love of the game can overcome a lot in this game. And that’s certainly a special quality for a program that promotes and grows the game to young athletes who want nothing more than a chance to just be a part of a team.


LeSean McCoy Says He Will Retire As An Eagle

Embed from Getty Images

By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Editor

When Chip Kelly took over the Eagles franchise, he made two major moves that rid the franchise of top players LeSean McCoy and DeSean Jackson.

For the first time in his career, McCoy will be playing for a championship with former Eagles coach Andy Reid and the Kansas City Chiefs.

McCoy told the media, including the Philadelphia Inquirer's Jeff McLane, that he will retire as an Eagle when the time comes to hang up the cleats.

Continue reading "LeSean McCoy Says He Will Retire As An Eagle" »


Philly Mourns The Tragic Loss of Kobe Bryant and Daughter Gianna

By Kevin McCormick, Sports Talk Philly Editor

Sunday afternoon, the world was given terrible news of a helicopter crash in California. Among the victims of this horrific accident were NBA legend Kobe Bryant, and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna. 

The city mourns this loss greatly. As Bryant has many ties to the city of Philadelphia. 

His connections to the city started before he even burst on the scene. His father, Joe Bryant, played both college and professional basketball in Philadelphia. 

Joe Bryant played college basketball for La Salle from 1973-1975. Then he went on to start his professional career with the 76ers, playing with the team from 1975-1979. 

Kobe’s ties to the city began in 1992 when he started his High School career at Lower Merion High School just outside Philadelphia. He would go on to lead them to the state championship in his senior year. 

When his High School career ended, he passed Wilt Chamberlain as Southern PA’s all-time leading scorer with 2,883 points. 

Kobe would then go on to enter himself into the 1996 NBA draft. The same draft when the Sixers ended up drafting Allen Iverson first overall. 

Although Kobe was never a fan favorite here, mainly because he led the Lakers to beat the Sixers in the 2001 NBA finals, people always looked at Bryant as a Philadelphia product. 

Bryant shared a very special moment in Philadelphia as well. It was before a game against the Sixers, that Kobe announced that the 2015-2016 would be his final season. That night started a league-wide farewell tour for the future Hall of Famer. 

The sports world showed endless amounts of love yesterday, paying their respect to Bryant. This included Sixers stars Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid, who always looked at Kobe as an idol. 

Joel Tweet

Ben Tweet

Bryant ended his career a five-time champion, one time MVP, 18-time All-Star, and two-time Olympic gold medalist. He gave everything he had to the game of basketball and for that, his legacy will never be forgotten.

He gave an entire generation someone to look up to and idolize. Along the way giving a perfect example of how to be a fierce competitor and to always strive to become the best version of yourself.

Kobe and Gianna Bryant still had so much to give to the world and the game of basketball. Although they only had 41 and 13 years on this earth, the impact they have left on the game and the people around them will always live on.   

“Heroes get remembered but legends are forever”

-Kobe Bryant 

*Thoughts and prayers are with all the friends and families of all the victims of Sunday’s crash*


Eagles Lose Top-Ranking Executive To Browns

Embed from Getty Images

By Paul Bowman, Sports Talk Philly Editor

For the second straight offseason, the Eagles are losing one of their high ranking officials to another franchise.

For the second straight offseason, that executive is being named a general manager.

Adam Shefter reports that the Browns are hiring Andrew Berry to fill their GM vacancy.

Continue reading "Eagles Lose Top-Ranking Executive To Browns" »