Life Update during Rumble Season

Hello everyone! Hope this post find you well. Hopefully it finds you in a great place in your life. It’s been a minute or so since my last post as the holidays were extremely busy but fruitful. My wife and I had an incredible first Christmas as a married couple and being able to see most of our family between Thanksgiving and Christmas was a true, true blessing.

Never underestimate the importance of friends and family. Obviously, when you’re an adult and have a spouse, responsibilities, kids, etc.. they become your focus if your priorities are in order. So to spend time with both families during the holidays were special and something I’ll always cherish.

To give a life update is difficult because so much has happened since my last post. We went to Ft. Worth, Texas for Thanksgiving to hang out with family on my wife’s side. That was such a great time as Texas is a beautiful state and the residents are so nice. I almost had to remind myself I was in America still because of how nice the people were. So, kudos to Dallas, Frisco, and Ft. Worth for reassuring me that America has tons of nice people still out there.

We are going to try and get out to Waco, TX early this summer. Morgan and I love Fixer Upper and the Gaines Family so we plan to visit Magnolia that place and experience all that it has to offer. Should be a great time! Season 5 is currently on HGTV every Tuesday night @9pm so check it out!

December 16th in Connecticut was such an amazing, memorable night. My Dad and I saw the greatest entertainer on earth, Criss Angel. It was such beautiful couple days. The almost 4-hour drive up north was also super cool to spend with my Dad. Other than Jesus Christ and my wife I love that man more than anything this world could ever offer me. You could offer me the most perfect life imaginable but if my Dad isn’t part of that life I want nothing to do with it.

I’ll never EVER forget those hours we got to spend together. Cannot be replaced or taken away from me. He deserves so much more for what he’s done for our family. And for anyone to disrespect him, my mom for anything can easily go fuck themselves because they don’t know shit. I’ll NEVER understand the sacrifice those two people did at 19 and 17 years old but I’m grateful they decided to keep me around and provide me the life they have. Despite being told by others to abort me.

So yes, it was special. God is beyond great. He blesses me no matter how many times I know I don’t deserve anything but death.

Morgan and I have now seen ‘The Greatest Showman’ three times in theatres and wouldn’t mind seeing a few more. That is one special movie, bah gawd, and we can’t get enough of it. I’m sick of the film (snobs) critics who have zero appreciation for feel-good movies in a time where this world desperately needs a few smiles. They (critics/snobs) ripped this film prior to its release and didn’t think it catch on with American audiences.


‘This is the greatest show.’  

 This film continues to smash records and break the traditional downfalls and pitfalls of movies after a not-so-stunning opening weekend. I recommend ANYONE to go out and see this movie before it leaves theatres. We have already pre-ordered the blu-ray on Amazon and will receive it on the day it releases.

I’ve concluded that this my second favorite movie of all-time. Yes, that spectacular. The only film above it is ‘The Dark Knight’, which I’m not sure could ever be topped. Now, remember, this is opinion not everybody else’s which makes it subjective so I don’t care if your list is different or if you think mine sucks. Don’t be a toolbox about it. I could care less if you hate any movie I ever mention. To each their own, my guy!

It’s officially Royal Rumble season and WWE has been ramping up storylines lately as we head straight towards Wrestlemania in New Orleans! Reports say it’s the most in-demand ticket in Rumble history. Gotta love Philadelphia baby!

There’s a lot that can happen in this match but my picks for the Rumble are both Smackdown guys: Shinsuke Nakamura or Daniel Bryan will be the last man standing next Sunday. The Rumble is my favorite pay-per-view event the WWE produces so needless to say I’m pumped!

Very much looking forward to being 12-years old next week for WWE RAW 25th Anniversary Show. The list of legends showing up is endless. My favorites who are going to be on hand are: Shawn Michaels, Stone Cold Steve Austin, The Undertaker, Trish Stratus, and Scott Hall just to name a couple. I’m not sure how they’re going to be to get everyone involved in a three hour show but it’s interesting how they’re going to get things accomplished with it also being the go-home episode before the Royal Rumble.

This is where I miss my podcast because I’d be doing a whole show based around the Rumble. But, I have no outlet for the podcast in terms of editing so I don’t want to half-ass something. I whole-ass everything J

I can’t think of anything else to say right now so I’m going to ride off into the sunset! See ya’s soon and God bless you!



Crossfit, Holidays, and Doc

slide_mainheadline_halladay_1Before I head into the body of what I had already wrote yesterday I just want to use this tiny platform to say something about Roy Halladay, who tragically passed away in a plane crash Tuesday at the young age of 40. He leaves behind a wife and two boys.

I had the absolutely privilege and pleasure of covering Halladay during his tenure here in Philadelphia from 2010-13 and I’ll never forget it. No athlete I’ve ever been around worked harder at his craft than ‘Doc.’ And I mean nobody. No hockey, football, basketball, or any other baseball player. Halladay was the REAL man of this town. He had so much zeal and passion for baseball and it showed through a hall of fame career.

I don’t want to get too deep into this because I’m still just as heartbroken over this as the next person, but I want to leave us with a tweet from former teammate Cole Hamels, who was in Philadelphia Tuesday.


As fans, we lost a hall of fame pitcher who was special to us playing baseball. But that doesn’t remotely compare to his family who lost a hall of fame husband and father.

That’s what’s most heartbreaking of all. The baseball end of things is well and good, but I hurt for the two boys who won’t be able to see Dad again. And a wife who won’t be able to lay in bed at night with her loving husband.

This hurts. Bad.

For a guy who made over $100 million playing a kids game all Roy Halladay wanted to do is be with crazy kids on a baseball field coaching them. May God bless his family and friends during this horrific time and I pray for the family to find comfort, peace, and a new normal.

‘Doc’ was an incredible man in a world where there’s few and far between.

Thank you, Roy Halladay. Rest in Power.


It’s officially the Holiday season, so whoopdy-doo and hickory dock!

I am a total mark for Thanksgiving/Christmas time and the only thing I can do without is the cold weather. I can dig the 45-65 temps but anything higher or below becomes annoying. Nonetheless, I created this blog to discuss life happenings and my Crossfit journey and I haven’t really been able to talk about the lifting that’s been done as of late.

We are in the second week or so of the new cycle and thus far I’ve felt quite strong. Upon returning from my honeymoon I was worried all of my numbers and strength was going to have a solid dropoff. It didn’t seem to be the case as I’ve actually hit a couple PRs lately.

My PRs since Nov. 1st: Push press, sumo deadlift (sets of 3), bench press (sets of 8), and my clean and jerk (sets of 3)

So apparently the strength is there. What isn’t there is my cardio. I do not feel up to par in that spectrum. To fix that, four nights a week I’m running either outside or at the gym. I’ll start at running 1-2 miles a night for time then go from there. I am running a 5K on Thanksgiving Day in Texas so that’ll provide motivation whilst training the next couple weeks. Overall, my strength has been fantastic and I feel good. Again, as always, I’m not where I want or should be but every day is a process. Trust it.

As things turn out, I will be missing this years in-house competition due to family obligations. It is what it is but I am sort of content missing it being as I missed a total of two weeks in the October preparing for a wedding. Valid excuse, right?

In December I’ll be making the trek north to Connecticut to see Criss Angel ‘Mindfreak Live’ with my Dad and I cannot wait for that. Angel has played a huge part in my life since 2005 and any chance I can witness his magic/illusions/brilliance up close and personal is a true blessing. He just announced a new one-man show called Criss Angel ‘RAW,’ The Mindferak Unplugged which will travel around the US beginning Jan18. My assumption is he will hit Philadelphia and New York City so I know I’ll have something to look forward to there as well.

Below is an excerpt from regarding his new show.


Life Update

CaptureIt’s been quite the month, eh? Well, really only I know that to be certain when it pertains to thy self.

Got hitched on October 14th and went on my honeymoon from the 16-21st. It was truly a magical and God-ordained past few weeks. The amount of gratitude and thanks I have for everyone who made our wedding possible and those who came out of love is insurmountable and cannot be put into words here.

Thank you to everyone who made our wedding day the most special day/night of our lives. I get emotional just thinking about how much was accomplished to just GET to October 14th. Then to see all the hard work, countless hours, and tears come to life on that day is truly magical and humbling.

It’s just going to be difficult getting used to this ring gimmick on my finger. I…I ain’t about anything wrapped around muh finger. OCD man!

I’ve been blessed to have now been to Walt Disney World 28 times. The honeymoon trip was by far the best of them all. It was the first time I’ve been down there for Halloween/Food&Wine Festival and it couldn’t have been better. It was phenomenal and breathtaking. Disney isn’t for anyone, but it’s for most people (based off stats) and it’s truly a vacation spot centered around adults and I stand behind that statement.

I’m a Christmas fanatic, really I am. Most who know me will share that same sentient about Chris DiFrancesco. However, nothing compares to Halloween time in WDW. It was a tremendous amount of fun and it was because of the cast and crew of WDW and the ADULTS!!

For anyone thinking about planning a trip to WDW in the next year I STRONGLY suggest an October stay. I promise you will not be disappointed.

With all the stress, deadlines, and lack of sleep the last year over the wedding, work, etc., I can’t even begin to tell you all what’s next. I don’t know what to do with myself. I know with November coming next week it means it’s about time to workout and center efforts towards summer and baseball season. Yes, I’m continuing the ‘career’ into year number 25,  a quarter century playing this game. Sheesh, do I owe it so much.

The holidays are fast approaching. I can finally sit back, kick on the Christmas tunes, and smile for the season. I’ll be in Texas for the first time during the Thanksgiving holiday which I’m excited for. Looking forward to new family and food J

November is also my birthday month. I’m a fan of the birthday celebration but after my surprise 30th last year I think I’m cool keeping it simple this time around. I feel and look better now than I did from 18-25. God is good and apparently I’m a late, late bloomer on things. I can’t be mad. It takes hard work, drug free, and no bulls**t magic pill. Just pure sweat and pain. I’m not exactly where I want to be but I’ll get there.

December is going to be blissfully exciting. As a best man gift, I purchased tickets to go see Criss Angel ‘Mindfreak Live’ with my Dad. He and I have talked for almost 10 years about seeing Angel’s show together and I’m blessed to be able to be the one to get those tickets and take him as a minuscule token of appreciation for what’s he’s sacrificed and done for me my entire life. My Dad deserves the world and an added bonus.

I’m going to ride off into the sunset and enjoy my wife, the fall, World Series, and those first place Philadelphia Eagles. That #11 is a special, special player. I’ll be back in a couple weeks or so, I’m sure.


Barbells and Mayhem #1

What’s going on everyone?! Here is the first episode of the Barbells and Mayhem Podcast.

Things will advance in terms of audio, music, and guests down the pike. I’m happy to be back. And I hope you all enjoy. If not, totally okay.

I will be back next week with more updates and Q&A’s. If you have any questions send them here or through my email, Twitter (@ChrisDiFran24) or Facebook.

God bless!

Listen to Barbells and Mayhem #1 by Chris DiFrancesco #np on #SoundCloud

Cycle to Competition, podcast update

Photo: Crossfit

Hello fine citizens. Just a quick little post here as I have a few updates on things.

1- I plan on recording the first episode of Barbells and Mayhem this week or next. All episodes will be posted on this site and on Soundcloud. They will not be long. However, I will have some interviews with people/coaches inside the Crossfit community and out.

2- I will also discuss what’s going in my life as I have some big events on the horizon. Also, I can’t forget sports (never). I will discuss Eagles football mostly and will have predictions on their schedule and weekly pool predictions as well for the whole NFL. I mean we all do pools, right? Office pools, etc? It can’t be just me!

3- I will post cycle updates from what I am doing at my box in Mt. Laurel. Maybe you’re trying to either get into Crossfit or just seeking new ideas for the gym or at home. I’ll post what I am doing and maybe it’ll inspire others to do the same. I’ll even post videos of my lifts and photos as well. I’m not perfect, in fact, I do many things wrong during my workouts as I’m only 14 months in to Crossfit. Which is still considered rookie status according to my peers.

Nonetheless, I wanted to shoot this update out to you all so you know what is going on and coming up!

I am very much open to ideas for the podcast if you have any in mind.

See you all very soon and have a safe and happy Labor Day holiday!

SummerSlam Top-10

Photo: WWE

With one of WWE’s big four events commencing in mere days, I wanted to post something.

I didn’t post all of July as my life has been quite hectic and emotionally tasking. Nonetheless, I am here and ready to write.

I will be listing my personal top-10 favorite matches that I’ve personally seen over the course of the 25+ years I’ve been watching pro wrestling.

Now, there’s nothing more subjective than wrestling and their fans. I’m not posting this to stir a debate or to say these are better than anyone else’s choices. Maybe my list will spark something in you to go to the WWE Network ($9.99 a month) and watch some of your favorites and some that you may have even forgot about.

SummerSlam takes place Sunday August 20th from Brooklyn, NY inside the Barclay’s Center.

Here we go!

1- Shawn Michaels vs. Triple-H- SummerSlam 2002

Not only is this particular contest my favorite Summerslam match of all-time but it is also in my top-5 overall favorites ever. It was the return of ‘The Heartbreak Kid’ Shawn Michaels since retiring in April of 1998 due to a shattered back. Naturally, other than The Undertaker it should be Triple H who gets the chance to climb between the ropes to wrestle against HBK in his first match back. I mean, they have had sort of a history together.

Nonetheless, in a match that went over 45 minutes, Michaels proved why he is the greatest in-ring performer in the history of pro wrestling.

2- Shawn Michaels vs. Hulk Hogan- SummerSlam 2005

Just the match idea alone is iconic. The promos leading up to it were a shoot as we now know that Hogan and Michaels did not get along. It’s business, brother! Unfortunately, I thought this match should’ve ended the other way. Hogan, a guy who was wrestling a one-off and didn’t plan on offering the company anything moving forward. Michaels was going to be a continued mainstay to help elevate younger talent. Michaels made Hogan look like a million bucks but had to do the job to the ‘Hulkster.’

But, as they always say, ‘that’s how Terry does business.’

3- The Hardy Boyz vs. The Dudley’s vs. Edge & Christian- SummerSlam 2000

The first-ever TLC (Tables, Ladders, and Chairs) match commenced at this event and my goodness it was revolutionary. It was just under 15 minutes of amazement from these six men who probably didn’t even realize quite what they were doing besides getting into an absolute car wreck. Edge & Christian went into the match champions and walked out the same.  Back then, high spots were cool because it was something new. Now, high spots are forced and in the indies high spots are all most have. It’s become a shame what high-spot monkeys have done to wrestling.

I’d much rather watch a 25 minute WRESTLING match where a couple high spots happen for storytelling and impact than see 2-6 guys completing flips and jumps while not selling whatsoever. Again, to each their own, that’s just how I feel.

4- Triple H vs. The Rock (IC Champ), Ladder Match- SummerSlam 1998.

This match was over 24 minutes and in my opinion it could’ve went so much longer because it was that good. You have two guys in the ring who rarely ever ventured to the top rope now fighting for the Intercontinental championship in a Ladder Match. Triple H won after ascending the ladder and retrieving the IC title. I loved the back and forth where neither guy really had the upper hand. This was also one of the first times we saw Chyna get involved with a big match. This match helped The Rock turn the corner and become a world championship contender. The IC title win for HHH elevated him to be seen as a great worker on the cusp of being a world champion type player.

5- Chris Jericho punches Shawn Michaels’ wife in the mouth. For a shoot. – SummerSlam 2008

The headline says it all but you have to see it. It kicked off one of the greatest rivalries in WWE history and was the hottest storyline of the decade, if we are all honest with each other. Rebecca ‘Michaels’ sold the shoot punch like a WWE vet and nobody knew anything was real until she stood up so we all could see the damage.

6- Seth Rollins (C) vs. John Cena (US-C)- SummerSlam 2015

This match was tremendous. However, at just under 20 minutes long I thought it could’ve been a little longer. Rollins won the match to secure both the WWE & United States Championship. Rollins and Cena had a great back & forth contest where both men showed why they’re bonafide superstars. Cena, who  never has a bad match, really allowed Rollins to shine here and take that next step. Great match with a bad finish.

7- Bret Hart (c) vs. Owen Hart- Steel Cage match, SummerSlam 1994

This was the second big match pitting the Hart brothers against each other in 1994. The other being Wrestlemania 10. This was an incredible rematch with Bret and Owen smack dab in the middle of their primes. This match went over 32 minutes and was easily the highlight of SummerSlam ’94. The chemistry was undeniable and it’s a shame this rivalry didn’t extend longer. The Hitman won this match to retain his title.

8- Shawn Michaels vs. Razor Ramon, Ladder Match for the IC title, SummerSlam 1995

The rematch! Michaels and Razor turned in the greatest ladder match in WWE history months prior at WM10 that saw Razor became the undisputed Intercontinental champion. The snag of this ladder match was WWE were not allowed to use the ladder as a weapon. Huh? Correct. Great match and by this point nobody could touch Michaels in the ring. He was flawless by this time.

9- The Undertaker vs. Edge, Hell in a Cell- SummerSlam 2008

This match was just badass. Both guys were at their peak in terms of talent Edge was a red hot heel. The match ran just under 27 minutes and I hoped it never ended. Taker and Edge beat the crud out of each other to further their Smackdown rivalry and it was awesome. I re-watch it every now and then to this day.

10- The 2017 SummerSlam!

It hasn’t happened yet but the mere fact that I am attending this SummerSlam automatically gets itself on the list. Is it a cop-out? Probably. But it’s just facts, my guy!

Baseball numbers are nuts

There’s not another sport on earth that’s as fun to discuss statistically than baseball. The numbers go back to the early 1900s and they’re fascinating to go back and study. I’ve been immersed in baseball stats since I was 10 years old.

I used to read and highlight the yearly almanacs and baseball encyclopedia’s for pure fun. I gained tons of (useless) knowledge but it made me feel intelligent, even though I despised mathematics. Still do.

I’m going to list a bunch of names and include stats through their first 10 full seasons in MLB. Some of the names you may recognize while others you may scratch your head and hit up Google. My goal here is for us to stare and compare generations.

Babe Ruth first 10 seasons (as a hitter): .353/.491/.737/1.227, 450 HR, 1,297 RBI, 1,269 BB, and 1,701 H.

Babe Ruth Wearing Crown

Photo: Wagner College

Albert Pujols first 10 seasons: .331/.430/.625/1.050, 410 HR, 1,230 RBI, 914 BB, and 1,901 H.


Photo: Wikipedia

Ted Williams first 10 seasons: .347/.484/.633/1.117, 323 HR, 1,261 RBI, 1,327 BB, and 1,763 H. (Worth noting, Williams missed 1943-45 while serving in WWII).


Photo: SI


Photo: Wikipedia

Barry Bonds first 10 seasons: .293/.410/.558/.968, 318 HR, 945 RBI, 1,017 BB, 1,503 H, and 344 SB.


Photo: SI

Rickey Henderson first 10 seasons:  .291/.403/.436/.839, 137 HR, 535 RBI, 1,507 H, and 838 SB.


Photo: SI

Ken Griffey Jr. first 10 seasons: .299/.380/.569/.948, 398 HR, 1,152 RBI, 1,742 H, and 167 SB.

Albert Belle first 10 seasons: .298/.374/.571/.945, 373 HR, 1,199 RBI, 670 BB, and 1,673 H.


Photo: Google

Hank Aaron first 10 seasons: .320/.375/.572/.947, 342 HR, 1,121 RBI, 541 BB, and 1,898 H.


Photo: BBHOF

Mike Schmidt first 10 seasons: .266/.383/.537/.920, 348 HR, 962 RBI, 953 BB, and 1,353 H.


Photo: Pinterest

Ichiro Suzuki first 10 seasons: .331/.376/.430/.806, 90 HR, 558 RBI, 457 BB, 2,244 H, and 383 SB (Ichiro is arguably one of the greatest hitters in MLB history with 2,244 hits in his first 10 full seasons in pro baseball.) b6e352edcee76b26becee60e2a6d6f36--seattle-mariners-baseball-players

Derek Jeter first 10 seasons: .314/.386/.462/.848, 169 HR, 756 RBI, 633 BB, 1,924 H, and 215 SB.


Photo: Forbes

Stan Musial first 10 seasons: .346/.434/.591/1.025, 281 HR, 1,174 RBI, 990 BB, and 2,251 H.

Obit Stan Musial Baseball

Photo: Pioneer Press

Mickey Mantle first 10 seasons: .311/.429/.588/1.017, 361 HR, 998 RBI, 1,086 BB, and 1,609 H.


Photo: BBHOF

Pete Rose first 10 seasons: .309/.372/.436/.808, 109 HR, 586 RBI, 611 BB, and 1,922 H. (Crazy to think Ichiro had accumulated 322 more hits than Rose in the same amount of MLB service.)


Photo: SI

Miguel Cabrera first 10 seasons: .324/.403/.573/.976, 353 HR, 1,198 RBI, 778 BB, and 1,911 H.


Photo: SI

Next post I’ll list a number of legendary pitchers because those are just as amazing to see in print.

It’s phenomenal to read some of the above numbers and realize that home runs weren’t always everything. Some of the guys on this list average an over .330 average every single season. It’s ridiculous.

Have a safe and happy fourth of July everyone and GOD BLESS AMERICA!

Snatches upon Snatches

sethsnatchThis blog is called ‘Barbells and Mayhem’ and I haven’t posted a ‘training’ based writing in a bit.

I’m in the fourth week of an eight week cycle right now and things have been going well. A lot better than than the previous cycle. I think the summer does something to me. I sweat profusely (I already sweat like Brock Lesnar anyway) and I feel myself pushing harder when the weather is warmer. Maybe that makes sense to someone other than me.

Up until this cycle my weakest lift was the snatch. From what I gather, that’s usually the most difficult lift for a lot of crossfitters and power lifters. To me, it’s because of its form. It’s consistent and if you break it, you know it.

Thankfully, through much work and video study on the lift I’ve gotten much better. I’ve PR’d both the hang snatch and high-hang snatch in the last two weeks so that has really made me feel accomplished.

I’ve only been doing crossfit for a little over a year now and I have learned so much about my body. From a mental standpoint, it’s taught me how to take my time and focus on each lift and movement. It’s made me realize which body part needs more work to benefit other parts during WODs.

It’s crazy to think how important pistols and burpees are in functioning balance. My balance has improved immensely during my lifts and it’s made me feel more comfortable pushing for heavier weight. Case in point, back and front squats have felt great. I need to keep screwing my feet into the floor on these squats because I tend to lean forward and it’s pissing me off.

I’m not here to tout or toot my own horn because I know my weaknesses (a lot of them) and I know where I struggle. I still do not enjoy myself or how I look in the mirror. Morgan is constantly trying to remind me how good I look compared to just six months ago. I don’t see it. It’s a problem and I continually am working on it.

For me, training is like therapy. It’s a space where I can clear my head and nothing else matters except making myself better. That’s what it’s all about for me.

I’m not sure what the back half of this cycle will bring but I’m damn sure going to push harder and harder to see if I can continue to gain momentum heading into the brunt of summer.

I’m also looking forward to getting a couple friends into the box with me soon. Both of which are great friends of mine from church. These guys have reached out with interest and I can’t wait train with them.

In terms of baseball, this nightmare of a summer is almost over and I’m thankful for it. I’m eternally grateful for the lifelong friendships I’ve created with a few guys on the team but it’s time to move on and upward. Some won’t understand because they’re not at a point in their lives to understand. Luckily, a few on the same page as me and that’s important.

All that is left is to leave everything I have on the field these last couple games and then ride off into the sunset and prep for fall/spring hockey. That’s exciting.

Lastly, I listen to quite a few podcasts and I’m going to list my top 5 favorite here. Give them a listen if any interest you:

1- Steve Austin Show- PodcastOne, iTunes

2- Something to Wrestle With Pruce Prichard- iTunes, Google Music, etc..

3- Talk is Jericho- PodcastOne, iTunes

4- What Happened When with Tony Schiavone

5- The DIS (Disney World) Unplugged- iTunes, etc…

Have a great rest of your day everyone and God bless!


Flyers better off after draft weekend


Photo: CSN Philly

The Philadelphia Flyers had a solid chance to reignite the future of their franchise when they held the second overall pick last week. They drafted who many considered the consensus number one player in the draft, Nolan Patrick of the Brandon Wheat Kings.

Yes, many preferred Nico Hischier, including myself. However, it’s not difficult to seek and find just how big of a piece Patrick will be for the future of the Flyers organization.

I’ve said to many of my friends in and out of the NHL that Patrick sharply reminds me of Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews. Everything about Patrick oozes characteristics similar to the 3-time Stanley Cup winner.

I can easily envision Patrick becoming the next Flyers captain in 2-3 years once the Flyers find a way to rid themselves of Claude Giroux and his heinous contract. He won’t light up the scoresheet at the end of the season but Patrick will do everything right. His ceiling could be 80-point seasons while I expect him to consistently range in the 70-75 point area.

Nonetheless, head coach Dave Hakstol has plenty to play with once the Flyers start the season back up October 14th against the Washington Capitals.

That directs me to the other ‘big move’ out of the Flyers. Brayden Schenn was dealt to the St. Louis Blues for Jori Lehtera and multiple draft picks.

Let’s be real about Schenn. He’s a dime a dozen. There’s loads like him in the National Hockey League. Will it be difficult to replace 25 goals? Of course. Especially on this team. His 17 power-play goals were tied for most in the league. However, he was putrid even strength when the Flyers really needed him most.

Schenn never found his niche with the Flyers as he was always radically inconsistent and unreliable. Plus, in terms of assets and contract, Schenn was the most logical piece to move. Can’t trade Wayne Simmonds as he’s the Flyers best overall player right now. Unfortunately, both Giroux and Jake Voracek cannot be traded due to their large contracts.

So, in the NHL a 25-goal scorer who’s available is much easier to trade. GM Ron Hextall made the right move on this one. More importantly, this made room for Patrick to slide right in to center either the second or third line for Hakstol this season. It was logical but widely unpopular for some reason.

The primary focus for the Flyers moving should be securing a quality starting goaltender not named Steve Mason. There are a few free agent veteran netminders on the market, but I’m not sure if any of them are the answer right now. If it were me, I’d ride it out with Anthony Stolarz and see what he can do. Just never know. He’s 23 and is ready to go.

Flyers have to get it right in Hischier



Only one other time have the Philadelphia Flyers drafted number two overall in the NHL Draft. That was in 2007 when James van Riemsdyk followed future Hall of Famer and number one overall pick, Patrick Kane.

Ten years later, the Flyers are without ‘JVR’ but have the second overall pick in the NHL Draft. Friday night at the United Center in Chicago, GM Ron Hextall has a monster chance to elevate his Flyers team forward after a season that saw the franchise take a giant leap backwards.

The Flyers are expected to select Halifax center Nico Hischier, who played in Halifax this past year. Although unlikely, if the New Jersey Devils select the Swiss forward we will likely see the Flyers opt for Nolan Patrick of the Brandon Wheat Kings.

Personally, Hischier is the best fit for this team moving forward. The Flyers already have dead weight on their roster in Claude Giroux and Jake Voracek and will unfortunately have to continue paying their outrageous contracts. Why? Because no other team in the league wants either player with their respective cap hits.

Nonetheless, Hextall, Hakstol, and the Flyers have to push on and put other guys in the right place the best they can and it starts with Friday’s number two overall pick.

At 6-1, 175 Hischier is tremendous. He’s a dynamic skater who’s quickness separates him from everyone else in his class. He has good speed and has an elite hockey sense. He seems to always know where to be on the ice and is a magnet for the puck.

Hischier rocketed up the rankings after raking in 86 (38G, 48A) points in 57 games for the Halifax Mooseheads this past year. Over the last few years his offensive output and growth have risen aggressively.

There’s been heavy comparisons to Pavel Datsyuk. That’s a bit excessive, however, not bad to at least be mentioned in that conversation. Still, the Flyers could most certainly use a scorer of that caliber on a team who registered one 30-goal scorer and only four players over 50 points. The anemic Flyers offense needs a shot of skill and production, Hischier is that player.

It will be nice to see the likes of Travis Konecny and Wayne Simmonds play alongside this 18-year old kid.

Steve Kournianos of ‘The Draft Analysis‘ had this to say about Hischier:

“Hischier is an elite center with off-the-charts puck artistry and swift skating that combine into a lethal package. Sly and dangerous, he can strike at a moment’s notice. His agility and escapability are unmatched among draft peers, and at 18 years old his hockey sense is on par with the world’s best young players of any level. And he’s far from just a finesse player — Hischier is a fierce competitor who hates losing whether it’s a one-on-one puck battle or a seven-game series. He can kill penalties, lend support down low and do his best at physically moving opponent’s off the puck. Hischier has a good, accurate shot but it’s the way he fakes and jukes that makes beating goalies all the more simple. Blessed with sick hands, poise and a keen sixth sense, he is next to unstoppable once he takes the puck below the hashmarks.”

Mike Morreale of

“Hischier’s elite skill and hockey sense is combined with a complete level that allows him to be effective in any style of game. Hischier (6-1, 176) was 10th in the QMJHL with 86 points (38 goals, 48 assists) in 57 games and was named rookie of the year and best pro prospect in the league.”

I personally believe the Flyers are going to end up with the best player of this draft. Nolan Patrick is real good player, don’t get me wrong, and the Devils will have themselves a franchise player to build around. All things considered, Hischier is the complete package in my book and based off the people I have spoken to about him, I don’t seem to be in the minority at all.

Let’s hope the Flyers get this one right.