The 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs kicked off with a bang this weekend. The opening game went to overtime, and so did the first two games on Sunday afternoon. Sunday night’s matchup between the two Florida teams seemed destined for overtime as well in a back-and-forth contest.
For the Philadelphia Flyers, the Lehigh Valley Phantoms finished their season this weekend. It didn’t end without Wade Allison clowning a Penguin and showing off his uppercut in his first career fight on Saturday night.
Welcome to the Morning Skate, our roundup of links on Philly Hockey Now as well as other sites around the National Hockey Now network and hockey world!
- Nolan Patrick has been a bust so far in Philadelphia, but it was good to see him healthy this season. Patrick reportedly hired his third agent and could “ask for a fresh start somewhere else” this summer. He’s a name to watch this offseason. (Philly Hockey Now)
- The Flyers are entering an offseason of change with the expansion draft looming. On top of that, a core shakeup could be in the cards after a disappointing season. We look at five Flyers that may have played their last game in orange and black in last week’s season finale. (Philly Hockey Now)
- Alain Vigneault was talkin’ ’bout ‘practice in his end-of-season press conference. He also touched on a variety of other topics including Canadian restrictions, wanting a “normal season,” and feeling like he let “everyone down” this season. (Philly Hockey Now)
- Chuck Fletcher will be at the helm in this crucial offseason. On Tuesday, he talked about the Flyers’ need to improve. He said that he’ll need to “be creative” as the Flyers can “upgrade everywhere” this offseason. (Philly Hockey Now)
Around the NHL
- The Pittsburgh Penguins controlled most of the game, but that doesn’t matter. They squandered a third-period lead and Tristan Jarry was laughably bad in net. (Pittsburgh Hockey Now)
- Kyle Palmieri seemed like a trade-deadline bust for the Islanders during the regular season. However, he performed when he was needed the most on Sunday in Game 1. (NYI Hockey Now)
- Brad Marchand had an off night for the Bruins in their Game 1 loss. Bruce Cassidy isn’t worried, but should he be? (Boston Hockey Now)
- The Avalanche are raring to go as the odds-on favorites to win it all. Nathan MacKinnon is back for Game 1, giving Colorado a formidable lineup. (Colorado Hockey Now)
- Despite the goaltending heroics of Marc-Andre Fleury, the Vegas Golden Knights are down 1-0 in the best-of-seven series to the Minnesota Wild after a 1-0 overtime loss on Sunday. (Vegas Hockey Now)
- Sharks GM Doug Wilson claimed that Logan Couture is still in his prime at 32 years old. Is that possible? (San Jose Hockey Now)
- Previewing the first-round matchups in the Stanley Cup Playoffs
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Photo: Heather Barry Images