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06/05/2019 4:28 am  

NEW YORK -- Steve Mason still isnt feeling well enough to play, so Ray Emery will be back in the net for the Philadelphia Flyers in Game 2 against the New York Rangers. Minkah Fitzpatrick Dolphins Jersey . Mason has been sidelined for a week because of an undisclosed upper-body injury after he was knocked over and hit his head on the ice against Pittsburgh. He and the Flyers have declined to say whether the goalie sustained a concussion. Mason was back at practice with his teammates at Madison Square Garden on Saturday after working out alone Friday, but wore down near the end of the 45-minute session. After he spoke with coach Craig Berube and general manager Paul Holmgren, it was decided that Mason would sit out again Sunday. "For the most part, I felt pretty solid," Mason said in the cramped dressing room. "Im getting better every day, but I wont be playing." Again declining to reveal what was ailing him, Mason said whatever the problem was became an issue in the final 10 minutes of practice. Mason was down on his knees in a low crouch with his head down while Berube addressed the team at centre ice. "We decided that we needed to give it a little more time before I get back in there," Mason said. Mason wont serve as Emerys backup Sunday, so Cal Heeter -- who wasnt at practice -- will have to be summoned back from the AHL. Mason is hopeful to play in Game 3 on Tuesday in Philadelphia. "I am going to make that my goal and make sure Im getting enough rest as possible to make sure that when I do get back in I am 100 per cent and ready to help the team rather than be a liability," he said. "Were doing everything that we can to make sure that were treating it the proper way." The Rangers took to the Garden ice about 90 minutes before the Flyers and then fielded questions about how different it would be facing the right-handed catching Mason as opposed to Emerys left glove hand. Now that they wont have to adjust to a new goalie, the Rangers can focus on trying to repeat their shutdown effort of Game 1 when they limited the Flyers to 15 shots and earned a 4-1 victory with three third-period goals. "We know our game plan works if we all buy into it and we all do the same things," Rangers forward Rick Nash said. The Rangers carry a nine-game home winning streak over the Flyers into Game 2 -- including a 3-0 mark this season. Whether the location has anything to do with it or not, they have kept Philadelphia captain Claude Giroux without a shot in the past two games at MSG. New York has outscored Philadelphia 35-10 during the winning streak and allowed two goals or fewer in each of the nine games. "Weve got to take what they give us," Giroux said. "Whatever the play is, we obviously dont want to turn it over against these guys. Theyre pretty good on the rush, so weve got to make sure we play our game. "When we win battles, our scoring chances will go higher." Giroux said he isnt feeling any negative pressure to perform. "You want to be in this position," he said. "You want to be in the playoffs. You want to be in charge, and you want to be the one making the difference. Thats the best part about the playoffs." Rangers coach Alain Vigneault appeared relaxed and in a good mood during his media session. He wouldnt say if he would make any lineup changes for Sunday, but after his club limited Philadelphia to four offensive zone faceoffs in the series opener, no major adjustments seem necessary yet. "This is where we have to realize that the level is going to go way higher, and we cant get caught resting on Game 1," Rangers forward Brad Richards said. The Flyers are ready, too, even if they havent won at the Garden in over three years. "Weve got to come out with the attitude that we came here for a split and bring the momentum after a Game 2 win back to Philly," Flyers forward Scott Hartnell said. "Its awesome. Its MSG. Its playoff time. From the national anthem to the puck drop -- even when they score, and that stupid goal song that they sing, its pretty cool. "Youve got to enjoy it. Obviously, we dont want to hear that song four times (Sunday), but weve got to be jacked up and ready to roll." Robert Quinn Dolphins Jersey . Modin, 36, tallied seven goals and three assists in 36 games with the Thrashers this season. The Sundsvall, Sweden, native has posted 232 goals and 230 assists in 894 career NHL games with Toronto, Tampa Bay, Columbus, Los Angeles and Atlanta and has appeared in 57 post-season contests, helping the Lightning capture the 2004 Stanley Cup Championship. Jason Sanders Jersey . Top-seeded Djokovic, who is making only his second appearance this year after reaching the quarterfinals of the Australian Open, was a 6-3, 6-3 winner over 54th-ranked Istomin of Uzbekistan. "It wasnt as easy as the scoreline indicates," said Djokovic, who has won in Dubai on four occasions.MANCHESTER, England - Boasting the Premier Leagues most dangerous attacking units, Manchester City and Liverpool should provide a glut of goals when the title challengers play during Thursdays packed Boxing Day program. Liverpool is at the top at Christmas for the first time since 2008 after scoring 42 goals. Only Manchester City has been more lethal in front of goal, with the team — a point behind Liverpool and Arsenal in third — scoring 51 goals in 17 games. With Europes leading leagues on their winter breaks, every Premier League team is in action on Boxing Day. Here are five things to know about Thursdays games: ___ TITLE FACEOFF The short trip to Manchester will be a test of the depth of Liverpools resources — as well as its title credentials — with only 17 players fit to travel across the northwest. "Our squad is very thin at the moment," Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers said. "None of the guys who have been out have returned and there is still the timeline which was set for them." Among the casualties are captain Steven Gerrard, defender Jose Enrique and striker Daniel Sturridge. Crucially, though, striker Luis Suarez is fit and in form, scoring 10 times in four straight victories. "We will need to keep him quiet," City midfielder James Milner said. "But Liverpool are a top side having a good season and its not just about stopping him, because they have plenty of other players who can do damage as well." ___ BLUES BOUNCE BACK Chelsea was 11 points behind the leaders at this time last season under Rafa Benitez, but is now within two points of Liverpool going into Thursdays match against Swansea. "We dont go to Christmas as leaders, but we go with evolution because last season the championship was already lost by this point," Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho said. "Now, we are there ... we are completely alive." Chelsea and Arsenal drew 0-0 on Monday to leave the Gunners two points ahead in second. Arsenal has another derby on Thursday against West Ham. ___ MERRY MARTINEZ With only one loss in 17 league matches, Roberto Martinez has spent his first season at Eveerton trying to downplay expectations. Jerome Baker Dolphins Jersey. The Merseyside club is only out of the top four due to Chelseas superior goal difference. "I feel we havent reached our full potential and that excites me," Martinez said ahead of Thursdays match against last-place Sunderland. Last year it was Martinez in charge of a struggling team, with Wigan going on to be relegated before he was handed the Everton job. A draw against Sunderland would put Everton on 37 points, surpassing Martinezs total haul of 36 points with Wigan last season. As for the man Martinez replaced? David Moyes and Manchester United travel to Hull in eighth place, six points behind Everton. ___ JOB HUNTING West Bromwich Albion travels to Tottenham still searching for a manager almost two weeks after firing Steve Clarke. Tottenham only dismissed its manager, Andre Villas-Boas, last week, but has already replaced him. Tim Sherwood was surprisingly entrusted with his first managerial job. "Were two sides who are a probably little bit unsettled at the moment," West Brom interim manager Keith Downing said. But Sherwood isnt exactly inheriting a Tottenham team in crisis, despite the club feeling the need to fire Villas-Boas last week. While in temporary charge on Sunday, Sherwood oversaw a 3-2 victory at Southampton that put Tottenham within four points of fourth-place Chelsea. While the 44-year-old Sherwoods appointment was a surprise, given his lack of managerial experience, he does know Tottenham, having been part of the coaching setup since 2008. "Ive known it from the grass roots right up to the first team, worked at every level of the football club and played here, so I know it better than most," Sherwood said. ___ CARDIFF STAND-OFF Malky Mackay remains in charge at Cardiff for Thursdays game against Southampton. Mackay was asked to quit by owner Vincent Tan — and looked set to be fired — before being handed a reprieve on Sunday. But with Mackays fractured relationship with Tan yet to be healed, chairman Mehmet Dalman concedes the south Wales club might still have to act swiftly to bring in a new manager to restore stability.

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