Flyers

Flyers' Stanley Cup drought is taken to another level in Pittsburgh

Flyers' Stanley Cup drought is taken to another level in Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH — Apparently, Sunday was still a day to celebrate for Penguins fans.

Regardless of another gut-wrenching, last-minute overtime loss for the Penguins to their hated cross-state rival, a certain radio talk show host wanted Pittsburgh fans to wallow in the Flyers' misery.

Mark Madden pointed out in his column for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review that Sunday’s game against the Flyers marked the 16,000th day since the orange and black won their second Stanley Cup championship.

And for that, apparently Penguins fans should be in a celebratory mood, as he wrote, "But Sunday is a day to celebrate, not worry. The Philadelphia Flyers visit PPG Paints Arena, and it will be exactly 16,000 days since the Flyers last won the Stanley Cup."

The 16,000-day drought inspired Penguins fans to unfurl a banner in the upper deck, and it even caught the attention of NBC play-by-play great Mike “Doc” Emrick, who referenced the 44-year drought during the second period of Sunday’s telecast.

But Madden’s personal vendetta with the Flyers and their followers caught the attention of Flyers radio host Jason Myrtetus, who exchanged Twitter jabs with the Pittsburgh shock jock.

The two radio hosts started their online feud a few hours prior to Sunday’s game (NSFW below).

Madden, who doesn’t hide his love for the Penguins, ended his column by saying, “That’s a lot of days. Many more will follow.”

Not if the Flyers keep beating the Penguins in overtime.

Not if Carter Hart plays like he did Sunday night at PPG Paints Arena. 

Perhaps Madden also needs to be reminded that Philadelphia’s Eagles and Phillies have both won championships much more recently than Pittsburgh’s Steelers and Pirates.

Then again, their misery doesn’t exactly register on Philly’s radar.

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Don't lose perspective with Flyers prospect Jay O'Brien

Don't lose perspective with Flyers prospect Jay O'Brien

The Flyers saw both ends of the spectrum with their first-round picks from the 2018 draft.

While Joel Farabee shined at Boston University this season (see story), Jay O'Brien struggled to find his game at Providence College.

After a freshman season comprised of injuries and five points (two goals, three assists) in 25 games, it appears O'Brien's time with the Friars is over.

According to a report Tuesday by Jeff Cox of the New England Hockey Journal, O'Brien has entered the NCAA transfer portal and will play for the Penticton Vees of the BCHL during the 2019-20 season.

O'Brien, a playmaking center, will have three years of college eligibility remaining.

Now, before anyone starts debating O'Brien's future, let's remember the importance of perspective with teenage prospects. 

O'Brien was perceived as a bit of project when the Flyers' previous regime of Ron Hextall and Chris Pryor selected him 19th overall last summer. Taking O'Brien at No. 19 was viewed by many as a reach, but the Flyers' scouting staff was high on the Thayer Academy product and trusted its evaluation. The Flyers took O'Brien over other centers Joseph Veleno, Rasmus Kupari and Isac Lundestrom.

This season, Veleno put up 104 points in the QMJHL, Kupari had 33 points over 43 games in Liiga (Finnish pro league) and Lundestrom appeared in 15 games with the Ducks.

O'Brien, because of his smaller stature (5-foot-11, 174 pounds) and being drafted out of prep school, had an adjustment period playing Division I hockey (see story). Multiple injuries also didn't help his cause with the transition.

But patience with O'Brien was always going to be imperative. The Flyers drafted him on a lot of upside after taking more of a guarantee in the quick-rising Farabee five picks earlier. The 19-year-old O'Brien isn't lacking in ability or work ethic. Providence head coach Nate Leaman, who led the Friars to a national title in 2015, called O'Brien's skill set "elite."

"It takes time to learn to play at the speed, to play with the lack of space," Leaman said in January during a phone interview with NBC Sports Philadelphia (see story).

"These guys that come right from high school, it takes time and I know Philly has told us that they understand that also."

O'Brien paid little attention to pre-draft rankings last summer.

"I don't even know where I was," he said at development camp. "It doesn't mean much to me. It's not really where you get drafted, it's what you do after you get drafted."

He'll have a new path in 2019-20, another chance to prove himself. There's still plenty to like, with plenty of time.

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2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs schedule: Game 7s are here for Maple Leafs-Bruins, Golden Knights-Sharks series

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2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs schedule: Game 7s are here for Maple Leafs-Bruins, Golden Knights-Sharks series

The two best words in sports: Game Seven.

Well, we get two times the fun Tuesday night as Game 7 matchups are here for the Maple Leafs-Bruins and Golden Knights-Sharks first-round playoff series.

Below is the full schedule for Day 14 of the 2019 Stanley Cup Playoffs. You can watch the entire playoffs on the networks of NBC. 

Toronto Maple Leafs at Boston Bruins (tied 3-3)
Game 7, Eastern Conference first round
7 p.m. ET | TV: NBCSN | Live stream here

Vegas Golden Knights at San Jose Sharks (tied 3-3)
Game 7, Western Conference first round
10 p.m. ET | TV: NBCSN | Live stream here