Here are excerpts from Thursday's Ask Gonzo chat on Philly.com with columnist John Gonzalez:
Comment from BMC: Hey Gonz, what are your thoughts on the Flyers season? Gotta be a success overall, right? As disappointing as it was, this is a team Philly sports fans won't soon forget.
Gonzo: On the spectrum of teams that got close to a title but came up short, this Flyers crew will end up closer to the '93 Phils than the Eagles '05 Super Bowl squad. The Macho Row group ended the season horribly, but still they're loved in Philly. The Eagles got close but blew it, and they're seen as a disappointment. Considering that the Flyers almost didn't make the playoffs and were nearly bounced from the postseason by the Bruins, I think most people will look back on what they accomplished and remember it fondly. And they should.
Comment from The Donald: What are your thoughts about Leighton? People are saying he's gotta go but it was his first Finals and he's young (for a goalie). Should he be in net next season? He thrived before the Cup Finals.
Gonzo: He's a backup goalie who wouldn't have been on the ice if Emery and Boucher hadn't gone down. Considering he wasn't in the team's plan before the year began, that he managed to keep them in it is remarkable.
That said, the final goal was weak and disappointing. It just was - but he knows that and probably feels the same way.
Comment from Jake the Snake: Who do you think had the best playoff beard? Gagne and Leino's were pretty nasty.
Gonzo: Hartnell. A friend tweeted that the beard-to- face ratio was 10:1 for Hartnell. That's about right.
Comment from scsc: Did you think the refs blew the whistle too quickly when the flyers tried to score but not when the Hawks would try to score?
Gonzo: Nah. Look, we can sit here and complain about the refs and the announcers and the ice conditions in Chicago, or we can congratulate the Blackhawks and Flyers on having fantastic seasons and treating us to some really grand sports entertainment.
On a completely unrelated note, my Ivory Coast sleeper pick for the World Cup is in jeopardy since Drogba is recovering from that injury. Still, someone needs to explain something to me: His injury is to his arm. Soccer players use their feet. Can't they just throw a cast on it, tape him up and send him out there? Laperriere played with no face for much of the playoffs.
Comment from viva la vida: What are your thoughts on that stupid song that plays in chicago when the Blackhawks score a goal?
Gonzo: I might be the only person in Philly - besides one of the hockey beat writers who shall remain nameless to protect him from the backlash - but I actually dig that song. It's catchy. I didn't like hearing it after the Flyers got scored on, but it had a beat. Plus, I find it hilarious that it's about a stripper. I'm easily amused that way.
Comment from reality speaks: Best TV show on this summer?
Gonzo: "Party Down," "True Blood," "Top Chef." Take your pick. They're all good for different reasons. (And "Mad Men" when it comes back, of course.)
Comment from Jake: Drogba had elbow surgery. Ever break your elbow? It's really a bad injury and ever try to run and push off a defender with one arm in a bent position in a sling? Plus if he falls on it, it's got a chance to never heal right. A nasty injury.
Gonzo: Why can't you battle for position with a cast on your arm? It's just about the pain threshold. Soccer players are - compared to other athletes - soft when it comes to that stuff.
It's the World Cup. You gotta tape that $#%@ up and get out there.
Comment from GG: I play both ice hockey and soccer. They both have pain-inducing sides to them. Soccer is not for sissies my friend. My one remaining ACL feels great.
Gonzo: Never said it was for sissies. And I honestly never thought I'd do a chat dominated by hockey and soccer. Next week, we explore the awesome world of women's tennis.
Comment from Greg: Who is running the Red Wings these days? They let Marian Hossa walk and got rid of Ville Leino. Arguably the two guys who played the best overall series for their respective teams in the Finals.
Gonzo: OK, seriously, what [the hell]? We can talk Flyers and the World Cup today, but I have to draw the line at questions about "who's running the Red Wings." Similarly, if you have questions about Detroit Shock hoops, you're in the wrong spot.