Flyers

NHL Notes: Canadiens fire Michel Therrien, hire Claude Julien as head coach

NHL Notes: Canadiens fire Michel Therrien, hire Claude Julien as head coach

The Montreal Canadiens have fired coach Michel Therrien and hired Claude Julien to replace him.

Julien was just fired as coach of the Boston Bruins last week. Montreal general manager Marc Bergevin made the announcement Tuesday, two days into his team's bye week.

The Canadiens are the NHL's worst team since the start of January and lost 4-0 to the Bruins on Sunday. They next play Saturday against Winnipeg.

Therrien was in his fifth season of his second tour of duty as Canadiens coach. They missed the playoffs last season after goaltender Carey Price injured his knee in November.

Julien returns to Montreal, where he coached from 2003-2006. He won the Stanley Cup with the Bruins in 2011 and was the longest-tenured coach until last week.

BLUES: Stasny placed on IR
ST. LOUIS -- St. Louis Blues forward Paul Stastny has been placed on injured reserve with a lower-body injury.

The team said the veteran was injured during the Blues' 2-1 overtime win on Feb. 9 in Toronto.

The 31-year-old Stastny is in his third season with the Blues after being signed as a free agent on July 1, 2014. He is tied for fourth on the team with 35 points (15 goals, 20 assists) in 54 games. 

Kevin Hayes inspired beer to be released by Yards Brewing Company

Kevin Hayes inspired beer to be released by Yards Brewing Company

There’s no question that Kevin Hayes has assimilated well to Philadelphia.

Since signing a seven-year, $50 million deal this past offseason, the 27-year-old has endeared himself to Flyers fans. From being Gritty’s roommate to his fun nicknames to playing hockey well and helping — hopefully — lead the Flyers back to the playoffs, Hayes has quickly become a fan favorite.

The next logical step: A beer made and named in his honor.

Yards Brewing Company is releasing “Big Hayes-y 13” on Friday.

The beer is a double New England style IPA. For those unfamiliar with the style, New Englands are traditionally known for being juicy and hazy — hence the name — unlike traditional IPAs which have more hoppy bitterness. It's also an ode to Hayes' roots being from Dorchester, Massachusetts, and starring at Boston College.

The Flyers take on the Rangers Friday night so you can drink it while New York second guesses letting Hayes get away. Seems like the perfect beer to suck down while watching Hayes kill penalties and score goals with fantastic cellys.

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One Flyer was reportedly a hot trade target, but Chuck Fletcher shut it down

One Flyer was reportedly a hot trade target, but Chuck Fletcher shut it down

The suddenly-ascendant Flyers pieced together a somewhat busy trade deadline, acquiring a pair of depth forwards in Derek Grant and Nate Thompson to pad a playoff run, but things could've been much busier if rival executives had their way Monday.

One young Flyers player not named Shayne Gostisbehere was attracting a lot of attention as general managers circled the wagons before the deadline, according to a report from Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman.

That player? Scott Laughton:

Another player I heard a lot of teams liked: Philadelphia’s Scott Laughton.

'Chuck (Fletcher) couldn’t hang up fast enough,' another exec joked.

That's a great quote. I can see Fletcher laughing to himself, and quietly hitting "end call," when Laughton's name came up.

And it makes plenty of sense for Fletcher to shut down Laughton talks, on two fronts — both of which should excite Flyers fans.

For one, Fletcher avoiding temptation at the deadline means he has his eyes on the postseason prize. The Flyers, after Tuesday night's win (see story), are just five points behind Metro-leading Washington, with 19 games left before the playoffs. It would take a serious meltdown to miss the postseason, and it seems Fletcher feels like the Flyers can make noise in April (and May, and maybe even June?) so he stood pat.

Also, and this is probably a little more obvious: Laughton has turned into a young, sought-after talent in the eyes of league execs this season.

It's no secret that the 2019-20 season has been the best of Laughton's young career. He's already tied his career high in goals with 12, he's averaging a point every two games, and he's just 25 years old. The hard-nosed 2012 first-round pick is officially coming into his own this year, and he's still under contract through the end of the 2020-21 season. Really, it's an ideal development for the Flyers.

Is Laughton currently the kind of player who defines your team? Not just yet.

But he's become the kind of player other teams want, which is always a good sign.

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