Anderson knows he needs to get down to business in Colorado if he wants to prove he's a true number one.
10. Is Craig Anderson ready for prime time? He showed he could be the go-to guy when Tomas Vokun was hurt last year in Florida and now he gets the chance to prove it in Colorado. But Peter Budaj is ready to show he can still be the guy if Anderson falters. Continue reading
Bernie Parent ruled the goalie world in '74 and '75
Bernie Parent was one of the best goalies in the NHL during the 1970’s. In ’74 and ’75 he was quite simpley the best goalie in the world, leading the Philadelphia Flyers to consecutive Stanley Cups and winning consecutive Conn Smythe trophies in the process. As they said in Philly at the time, “only the Lord saves more than Bernie Parent”. Parent took the time to talk with TendersLounge about the changing world of pro hockey during the era of expansion and the WHA, playing alongside his childhood hero, Jacques Plante, and how he’s keeping busy today. What struck me most about the conversation was Parent’s incredibly positive attitude towards life and everything it has to offer. Here’s a guy whose career was ended by an errant stick hitting his eye, who nobody would question for harboring bitterness toward how his hockey career ended, but Parent genuinely seems to be happy with all the experiences in his life.
Parent veered from his conservative style when he joined the upstart WHA
TendersLounge: Welcome to the TendersLounge Bernie! The first question comes from my dad who used to love watching you play and has shared his stories with me. After wearing such a colorful mask in the WHA, how did you end up in a plain white mask with the Flyers?
Bernie Parent: Good question. Next question! Just kidding. Someone suggested I wear the flaming mask for the Blazers in the World league, so I thought that was appropriate because it was a new league. When I got back to the NHL I went back to the original Parent look which is a conservative look with just the Flyers logo.
Pete Peeters came within a game (and a missed offside call) of doing it in 1980. Five years later Pelle Lindbergh won one game in the finals but ultimately lost to the Oilers. Ron Hextall almost did it in 1987 after being down three games to one against the Oilers and then fell short against the Red Wings ten years later. And this year Martin Biron has led an unexpected run by the Flyers to the Conference Final. But in the 40 years of franchise history, Bernie Parent remains the only Flyers goalie to win the Stanley Cup.
Parent still lives in the Philadelphia area and has embraced his role at the Godfather of Flyers goalies. He proudly watches each successive generation of goalies try to duplicate his success and likes what he sees this year. “Biron is playing well… he is seeing the puck in slow motion”. What Parent likes most about Biron is his ability to bounce back. “Just because he has a bad game or a bad stretch, he doesn’t question himself as a goalie”.
Parent certainly know of what he speaks. After returning from the WHA Philadelphia Blazers back to the NHL’s Flyers he led the Broad Street Bullies to back-to-back Cups in 1974 and ’75. Parent was such a dominant force for the Flyers that he also won the Vezina and the Conn Smythe trophies both those years as well (Mario Lemieux is the only other player to win the Conn Smythe back-to-back). I was only five years old when the Flyers won their first Cup so I don’t remember seeing Parent play but my dad has told me a number of times that Parent meant more to the Flyers than Ken Dryden ever meant to the Canadiens’ run of four Cups.
Will Biron reach the pinnacle that eluded so many other great Flyer goalies? He seems to have the demeanor for it. Click here to read a good article in Philly.com about the history of Philadelphia goalies. There are some interesting comments from Hextall about the amount of credit he received for the Flyers run in ’87 as well as some observations from current San Jose Shark Brian Boucher that prove the Flyers goalies are all part of the same brotherhood.
When I first read that Jaroslav Halak was starting game four in place of Carey Price my first reaction was to pat myself on the shoulder for one of my first posts in which I predicted Halak would be the first backup goalie to make a big impression in relief. (I’m not counting Chris Osgood taking over the Wings’ crease because he’s really a co-number-one, not a real backup).
Lucky for me I kept my fingers off the keyboard as Martin Biron (the true goaltending story of this year’s playoffs) won another game for his Flyers. Only in the lonely world of a blogger can one take solace in at least suggesting that Carey Price might not be able to carry the load but I guess that’s all I have right now. What do you think, can Habs’ goalie coach Rolie Melanson help Price bounce back and get the Habs back into this series or are we looking at a Keystone State conference final?
Think Martin Biron is enjoying the way his Flyers are playing against the Habs? You don’t know the half of it! Biron is certainly enjoying his team’s run against the Canadiens and has put his team in a commanding 3-1 series lead but there’s more to beating the Habs than just carrying the Flyers on his shoulders. Continue reading
Marty Biron is in the midst of a fabulous playoff run, having led the Flyers to a seven-game upset of the Caps and now a hard-earned split in Montreal. As noted in our previous post on Biron, he’s more talkative than your average ‘tender. Watch this NHL.com video for proof and Biron spills the beans on what he keeps in his purse!