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Jack McCaffery is the lead sports columnist for the Daily Times and He has spent several decades covering everything from the Phillies, Eagles, Flyers and Sixers, to college hoops, to high school sports in Delco.

Sunday, April 22, 2012


It began with Peter Laviolette leaning over some glass to threaten the Pittsburgh coaching staff. It ended with a 5-1 Flyers victory Sunday.

It was an eight-game, cross-state volcano of bad blood and great hockey, including  a six-game opening round playoff series that was one of the most comprehensively compelling in Flyers history.

There were hat tricks and Hulk Hogan. Leads built and blown. Good goaltending and hideous goaltending. Strategy. Fights. Ejections. Injuries. Stars --- some established, some emerging. Fans dresed as bears. Insults. Highlights. Tension.

"Yeah," Scott Hartnell said. "It was great."

The schedule helped, with the NHL shipping the Flyers to Pittsburgh in each of the final two weekends of the regular season as an un-intentional run-up to the first-round series. But the Pens and Flyers didn't need much help in disliking one another. Their fans either.

So it is over and the Stanley Cup tournament will settle down, with closer games and quieter tempers.

Too bad.

Check out my column in the Daily Times Monday, and as always on, along with a story about the Game 6 excellence of Ilya Bryzgalov.


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