Sunday, March 29, 2015

Cold War: Blackhawks vs. Flyers

By Dylan Bestler

It was a Wednesday night rivalry between the Chicago Blackhawks and the Philadelphia Flyers in Philadelphia, the city of brotherly love. But when these two teams square off, the love is hard to find.

The Blackhawks and Flyers have some history between them. In 2010, the Blackhawks defeated the Flyers in the Stanley Cup in game six on a goal in overtime that mysteriously got past Flyer goaltender Michael Leighton. Even though that was almost five years ago and the Flyers are almost mathematically out of the playoffs, they want to take advantage of every chance they can to get some vengeance on the team from Chicago.

This was a special game for both teams because of one player by the name of Kimmo Timonen. He was a defenseman who played for the Flyers for the past seven years but was just recently traded to the Blackhawks on February 27. This was his first time back in Philly, so the Flyers honored him with a video tribute in the first period. He gave his salute to the fans and the game began.

Seven minutes into the period, Flyer forward Wayne Simmonds gave them the early lead as he beat Blackhawk goaltender Corey Crawford high to the glove side on a nice pass from line mate Matt Read. This goal set the tempo for the Flyers as they never missed a beat the rest of the game.

In the second period, it was all Flyers as they scored two deflection goals; one by Ryan White on a shot from Carlo Colaiacovo, and one by captain Claude Giroux on a pass from Jakub Vorachek. Steve Mason was unbelievable in net for the Flyers, stopping the Blackhawks first 25 shots. Crawford was also playing well for the Blackhawks, stopping 19 of 22 shots.

The third period started off nice for Chicago as they got an early power-play on a high stick from Colaiacovo. The Blackhawks capitalized on the Flyers mistake as they scored on the power-play. Andrew Shaw got the goal. This gave the Blackhawks some life but Mason didn’t crack. He shut them out the rest of the game and with an extra Flyer goal by Michael Raffl, the Flyers took the game 4-1.

Kimmo Timonen was the third star of the game so he got to come out on the Philly ice one last time in his career. This will most likely be his last year in the NHL due to his age (40) and his bad knees. Timonen was respected by all the players and fans. The NHL will miss his presence on and off the ice.

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