Flyers-Oilers: Pick Up the Pieces edition

Flyers-Oilers: Pick Up the Pieces edition

I don't care about the last four games. For that matter, I don't care about the better part of the last month. I honestly don't. I care about the next four games, and the next several months. 

Coming off their worst loss of the season, the Flyers were given the day off yesterday by coach Peter Laviolette. They were gassed on Sunday, he said. A grueling day of practice would have done them no good. They just needed a break. Lavvy took responsibility for that loss, but I read as much into that as I do every time Andy Reid takes responsibility after the Eagles lose. A 7-0 loss is no single person's fault. But each player and coach better be taking responsibility for tonight's game right now, before it starts. If players are out of sync with the system, I'm guessing they've heard about it from the law offices of Lavs, Richards, and Pronger. 

I think this team has the leadership and the experience to halt a slump, and that's part of why I think we'll see them pull out sooner rather than later. Perhaps even tonight against the Oilers, who are no slouches these days. 

The Oil have won their last three games and scored a combined nine goals in their last two. They're not currently the cupcake they've been for much of the season. Look at all this red. The Flyers no doubt know the Oilers are playing better than that right now though, and more like the teams that have been beating them over the past two weeks. The Oilers will have seen the tape of how the Rangers made the Flyers look like they were standing still in the defensive zone and clueless on offense. But Lavvy was right—they did look tired. Tonight, after a day off, we'll see if fatigue was the biggest issue, or if there are more lasting concerns to be addressed. Probably a combination of both?

Early word is that Bob will be in net, and Zherdev and Nodl will be scratched. Nodl's production has tapered off considerably, but he's still been a solid two-way forward. Jody Shelley and Dan Carcillo will suit up if those scratches come true, which will annoy some fans who don't see those two helping with the whole "got shut the hell out" problem from Sunday. True enough, but Shelley was a positive force that day, drawing two minor penalties and winning a fight. He can't be expected to then score on the power plays he drew... I can't speak to Zherdev, who hasn't responded well to being scratched, but Nodl did earlier in the season, as did James van Riemsdyk. I'm more than willing to let Lavvy work his scratch magic again and see if it pans out. 

Which Flyers do you think should be scratched, if not the ones Lavvy has picked? There's been talk of getting Nick Boynton some ice time, so we could see Sean O'Donnell rested. I think he's been scapegoated a bit by fans, although he's not playing quite as well as he had been earlier in the season. The Briere line really needs to have a big game soon though. They've been non-existant offensively, and victimized at times in their own end. Lavvy has appeared patient with them so far though, indicating he'd like to wait out their slump within a slump rather than break them up:

"I think the easy thing to do sometimes is to blow those things up. I want to try to remain patient and help these guys get through it. I believe in that line. I believe in Danny Briere, Ville Leino, and Scott Hartnell. Instead of dismantling it, I want to try to see what I can do to help it."

Good enough for you, or is it time to shake things up?

NBC Sports Philadelphia Internship - Advertising/Sales

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NBC Sports Philadelphia Internship - Advertising/Sales

Position Title: Intern
Department: Advertising/Sales
Company: NBC Sports Philadelphia
# of hours / week: 10 – 20 hours

Deadline: November 20

Basic Function

This position will work closely with the Vice President of Sales in generating revenue through commercial advertisements and sponsorship sales. The intern will gain first-hand sales experience through working with Sales Assistants and AEs on pitches, sales-calls and recapping material.

Duties and Responsibilities

• Assist Account Executive on preparation of Sales Presentations
• Cultivate new account leads for local sales
• Track sponsorships in specified programs
• Assist as point of contact with sponsors on game night set up and pre-game hospitality elements.
• Assist with collection of all proof of performance materials.
• Perform Competitive Network Analysis
• Update Customer database
• Other various projects as assigned

Requirements

1. Good oral and written communication skills.
2. Knowledge of sports.
3. Ability to work non-traditional hours, weekends & holidays
4. Ability to work in a fast-paced, high-pressure environment
5. Must be 19 years of age or older
6. Must be a student in pursuit of an Associate, Bachelor, Master or Juris Doctor degree
7. Must have unrestricted authorization to work in the US
8. Must have sophomore standing or above
9. Must have a 3.0 GPA

Interested students should apply here and specify they're interested in the ad/sales internship.

About NBC internships

Best of NBA: Curry, Thompson, Durant lead Warriors comeback over Pelicans

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Best of NBA: Curry, Thompson, Durant lead Warriors comeback over Pelicans

NEW ORLEANS — Klay Thomspon scored 31 points, Stephen Curry added 28 and the Golden State Warriors easily erased a 15-point first-half deficit en route to a 128-120 victory over the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday night.

Kevin Durantadded 22 points for the Warriors, who won for the first time this young season after dropping their opener to Houston. New Orleans is still looking for its first victory after two games, shooting well early in both games before fading in the second half.

Anthony Davis had 35 points and 17 rebounds for the Pelicans, while fellow big man DeMarcus Cousins also had 35 points.

The teams combined for 34 3-pointers, with the Warriors hitting 18. Thompson was 7 of 12 from deep.

After trailing by double digits much of the fourth quarter, the Pelicans pulled as close as five points down on Cousins' 3 with about three minutes to go. But Thompson responded immediately with a 3, and Golden State remained comfortably in control from there (see full recap). 

Ball flirts with triple-double, Lakers hold on to beat Suns​
PHOENIX — Lonzo Ball barely missed a triple-double with 29 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists in his second NBA game and the Los Angeles Lakers held on to beat the Phoenix Suns 132-130 on Friday night.

The Suns had a chance to tie it with 1.2 seconds to play, but T.J. Warren missed the first of two free throws. That meant he had to miss the second intentionally and hope for a rebound, but the Suns couldn't get a decent shot off before the buzzer.

Ball, the No. 2 overall pick this year who is a week shy of his 20th birthday, took over down the stretch, scoring eight points in a 2 1/2-minute span. His final basket during that run, a floating layup, put Los Angeles ahead 130-122 with 1:35 to play.

But the Suns came roaring back behind Eric Bledsoe and Devin Booker, whose 3-pointer with 6.4 seconds left cut it to 131-130. Brandon Ingram made one of two free throws to give Phoenix one last chance and Warren was fouled by Ingram on an inbounds play.

The free throw was off the back of the rim, though, and the Lakers survived (see full recap). 

Nets beat Magic in first game without Lin despite Vucevic’s career-high 41 points
NEW YORK — Jeremy Lin was in the hospital Friday, rather than joining his teammates for their home opener.

The Brooklyn Nets are going to miss him, but they showed they still have plenty of firepower without him.

D’Angelo Russell, Trevor Booker and DeMarre Carroll all scored 17 points, and the Nets beat the Orlando Magic 126-121.

Brooklyn had six players in double figures, three more with nine points and got 64 points from its reserves to bounce back after yielding 140 points Wednesday night in a season-opening loss to Indiana.

Lin ruptured the patella tendon in his right knee late in that game and had season-ending surgery Friday morning (see full recap). 

James and Korver heat up from 3, Cavs beat Bucks
MILWAUKEE — Lebron James had 24 points and eight assists, and Kyle Korver hit three straight 3s in a decisive third-quarter run to help the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Milwaukee Bucks 116-97 on Friday night.

Kevin Love added 17 points and 12 rebounds for the Cavs. Their 15-5 spurt over the final 4:25 of the third quarter, sparked by Korver's long-range shooting, opened a 13-point lead. Cleveland led by double digits most of the rest of the way to spoil the Bucks' home opener.

The defending Eastern Conference champions started the season with a second straight victory over an East contender after beating the Boston Celtics in their home opener.

Korver finished with 17 points and was 5 of 6 from 3-point territory.

Milwaukee's Giannis Antetokounmpo had 34 points on 15-of-22 shooting, along with eight rebounds and eight assists. Malcolm Brogdon had 16 points (see full recap).