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The final pro hockey game at the Spectrum has been played.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Phantoms vs. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins 2-3-09: First Period

Our only scratches tonight are Garrett Klotz, Patrik Hersley, and Jeff Szwez.

I saw someone copy and paste the content of an article relating that the Phantoms could be sold by the end of the week. However, they did not provide a link to the article at the time I saw it. I've requested the link from them. In the meantime, keep your eyes and ears open for announcements regarding the team's future, as information could be forthcoming relatively soon.

I'll need a little bit of time to digest the thought that the franchise could be sold and no longer be the Flyers' affiliate, which is a distinct possibility. Since my goal is to keep this a family-friendly blog, with content that can be freely shared in polite company, I will simply say at this time that I *vigorously* disagree with any such idea and that anyone in The Organ-eye-zation who has proposed or taken steps to bring that idea to fruition is on my Excrement Roster.

In other news, I can see that someone took my advice and recounted, again, the number of games remaining at the Spectrum. They were too high before, and I mentoned something, so they slightly tweaked the total in time for the following game. However, I didn't think they had subtracted quite enough from the erroneous total. They appear to have the numbers straight now, however, and not including tonght's game, we now have 16 games left of affordable hockey remaining in Philadelphia.

OK, now for the important thing of the night: THE GAME.

Andreas Nodl is back in the lineup, whch I am pleased to see. I'm not sure why he missed Saturday's game, but the more we see of him, the better.

The weather is sloppy and snowy, and that, combined with the fact that weeknight games are rarely a good draw, has had a negative impact on our attendance, to put it mildly. Actually, our walkup sales have suffered a TRIPLE whammy: the weather is bad, it's a weeknight, and there is another event gong on simultaneously with this one at the Center. Any one of those things will give people second thoughts about buying tix at the door. All three... Well, we won't have to worry about murderously long lines at the concession tonight.

We will, however, have to worry about overcoming a 1-0 deficit. DRAT. We had a goalmouth scramble and once the puck hit Munroe, it bounced up and over him into the net.

HA! Nevermind. As I was typing in the previous paragraph, the Phantoms tied the score. :), Hey, everybody, come on down, you're missing a great game! Rob Sirianni did the honors, with assists from Syvret and Maroon. 1-1, and the shot clock reads Phantoms, 2, Penguins, 1.

How nice it is to be able to type, "Nate Guenin blocked a shot" again. I've missed doing that, and judging from the obscene number of shots we gave up while Guenin was out with an injury, so have the Phantoms. P.S. Did I mention that Nate Guenin blocked a shot? :)

There haven't actually been a lot of SOG so far. With 11:05 left in the period, the Phantoms have 3 shots compared to the Pens' two. Bellamy just made a nice defensive play to prevent a third shot from reaching the net, scooping up the puck in the crease and getting it out of harm's way. Beaulieu helped move the puck away from the slot before any Pens could corral it.

We have seven D dressed tonight: Bartulis, Ratchuk, Guenin, DeSantis, Syvret, Curry, and Parent. So far tonight, our line combos are Ross/Kane/Laliberte; Matsumoto/Maroon/Sirianni; Raduns/Clackson/Nodl. Our fourth line wil be Bellamy, Beaulieu, and and a forward from one of the other lines.

Aaaah GO GO GO, one of the Pens D broke his stick! We make a rush to the other end while the Pens have the stick-free defender, but in the meantime the Pen in question either got a sub from the bench or got a new stick. Beans. It was a nice try.

OMG. Boy did we just dodge a bullet. More like a small H bomb. Guenin was about to be called for interference, meaning that when our defender touched the puck and accidentally kind of scored into our own net, the whistle had already blown so the possible own-goal did not count. So we're killing the first penalty of the game, but I'd rather see that than see us put ourselves behind on the scoreboard.

WHOA for Raduns and his DIVING attempt to prevent a shost from being fired. He slid from the boards to the top of the slot, causing the Pens point guy to keep backing up, backing, up, and backing up to try and find a shooting lane. Whatever he did, it sure worked, as we managed to kill off the final moments of the penalty and get our guy back. We only gave up two SOG during that shorthanded situation, both of which were registered before Nate Raduns did a slide that'd make any baseball player proud.

In the final two minutes of the period, Ross uses his speed to get past all but the final Pens defender, then dishes to Kane who's wide open at the left faceoff circle for a clear shot on goal. Nice play.

At the end of the relatively-even-in-all-aspects first period, the score remains tied at 1-1. The SOG are Phantoms, 7; Penguins, 9.


Allokago said...

Any idea on why Szwez is scratched?

Donna said...

Jeff Szwez got banged up during our most recent game in Hershey. He took a hit from Quentin Laing and didn't return to the game, nor have we seen him in the lineup since. (Someone flattened Laing shortly thereafter, but the damage was done.) The only thing I've heard snce then is that Szwez had a "lower body injury". I do hope we see him back in the lineup soon.

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