Flyers at Rangers chat - 03-16-13

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

We will be holding a live chat for tonight's important Flyers-Rangers game.

The chat and the game begin at approximately 8 p.m. EDT. Feel free to participate in the box below:


(Photo: Seth Wenig/Associated Press)

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Il governatore Steelers

Written by Dan Gigler on .

Gov. Tom Corbett made a much publicized trip to the Vatican today, leading a delegation for a brief audience with Pope Francis, to persuade the head of the Holy See to visit Philadelphia in 2015, not to exorcise the place, but rather for the 8th World Meeting of Families

After his visit with Il Papa, Gov. Corbett, a Pittsburgh native and unabashed Steelers fan, followed the sage advice, "When in Rome, Do as the Yinzers Do" and made a brief stop at La Botticella, a.k.a. "the Steelers bar in Rome" (although now its fair to simply call it the Roman Pittsburgh bar, given its year-round devotion to all Pittsburgh sports).

Below he's pictured with tavern owner Giovanni Poggi (left). 

Gio Guv

Art Rooney Jr., Lawrence Timmons, Cardinal Wuerl, Dan Bylsma, Bishop Zubik and Steelers minority share owner Larry Paul have all previously visited La Botticella in recent years, as have seemingly every man, woman and child with a 412 connection when vacationing in the Eternal City. 

And based on Corbett's atrocious polling numbers, he should hope to meet a few of them, as he'll need every vote he can get. Even from Rome. 

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Yes returning with 'Fragile'; M.I.A. also on sale

Written by Scott Mervis on .


yesnewWhen Yes came through the Carnegie Library Music Hall of Homestead last July, the band treated fans to three classic albums — “The Yes Album” (1971), “Close to the Edge” (1972) and “Going for the One (1977) — and left them without an encore of “Roundabout.”

One classic that wasn’t played that night was “Long Distance Roundaround.”

It’s guaranteed to be on the set list when the band returns on July 20. This time, Yes is pairing “Close to the Edge” album with the popular 1971 classic “Fragile,” which includes both “Roundabout” and “Runaround,” along with 11-minute closer “Heart of the Sunrise.”
Yes is guitarist Steve Howe, bassist Chris Squire and drummer Alan White with keyboardist Geoff Downes with Jon Davison replacing Jon Anderson.

Don’t make that your reason for not going. Davison, frontman for Glass Hammer, is a dead ringer for Anderson vocally and has a nice, low-key stage presence.

Tickets are $62, $80, and a limited number of Gold Circle seats for $100. All tickets will increase by $5 on the day of the show. Tickets are on sale on Saturday, March 29th at noon at the venue box office,, & by calling412-368-5225.


Also going on sale this week:


Stage AE (via ticketmaster):

April 28: M.I.A. with special guest A$AP Ferg ($29.50 advance/$35 day of Show). On sale Friday.

July 5: Fitz and The Tantrums $15. On sale Friday.

Aug. 8: An Evening With Dark Star Orchestra ($25 advance/$30 day of show). On sale Friday.


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Bad winter, bad forecasting

Written by Jon Schmitz on .


In the fervent hope that the final snowflakes of the season have drifted to the ground, we offer a last look at the accuracy of the long-range winter weather forecasts offered by the three Pittsburgh TV meteorologists last fall.

It was a bad winter for all of us. The snow and howling winds left all our faces red. But for KDKA’s Jeff Verszyla, the shade of red might have been slightly brighter. Here’s what he said on the last day of October:

“Last year, we finished the season with just over 57 inches, which was way above the seasonal average of 41 inches. This year, we won’t approach last year’s total.”

He then served up a prediction that 32 inches would fall for the entire season. The actual total through Wednesday: 62.5 inches. Juuust a bit outside.

WTAE’s Mike Harvey and WPXI’s Stephen Cropper did better, but not by a lot. Neither came very close to foreseeing the above-average snowfalls that fell from December through February; both overguessed what would fall in March.

The breakdown (with actual snowfall totals in parentheses):

Harvey -- December, 8 inches (15); January, 15 (17.9); February, 13 (16.1); March, 9 (4.1).

Cropper -- December, 10 inches (15); January, 12 (17.9); February, 12 (16.1); March, 8 (4.1).

None of the three came close to accurately forecasting the bitter cold that gripped us after Jan. 1.

Verszyla and Cropper said February would be the coldest month (wrong, it was January); Harvey said monthly average temperatures would be from 0.5 to 1 degree below normal (way wrong, the average was 6.3 degrees below normal in January, 5.4 in February and 4.9 so far in March).

So maybe it was an off-year for our weather seers. Or maybe they should just acknowledge that long-range winter forecasts are little more than guesswork designed to build ratings.

One final note: These guys were slam-dunked by the Farmer’s Almanac (and legendary forecaster “Caleb Weatherbee”) and the Old Farmer’s Almanac, both of which warned us it would be colder and snowier than normal.


With the Pennsylvania Legislature and Gov. Tom Corbett having stepped up to improve the state’s transportation system, it would be a shame if they were undercut by the gridlocked Congress, which has not come up with a plan to rescue the Highway Trust Fund, the principal source of revenue for federally supported projects. It is projected to run out of money this summer.

AASHTO, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, projects that 6,000 U.S. construction projects could be halted if the fund runs dry. It has produced an interesting slideshow about what’s at stake, which can be seen here.

The trust fund has lost more than half of its purchasing power since 1990 because of inflation (the federal gasoline tax is NOT indexed to inflation and hasn’t been raised since 1993), cars that burn less fuel and a decline in driving during the economic slump.

It will be interesting to see if U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, the Pennsylvania Republican who chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, can help pave the way to an adequate funding solution before the current transportation law expires at the end of September. So far, Mr. Shuster has told us he thinks transportation infrastructure is important, and that fiscal discipline is important, but has yet to offer much in the way of details.


Bridge replacement will begin on Lebanon Road in West Mifflin on Thursday. You think this bridge maybe needs it?


The $4.6 million project will replace the bridge over the Union Railroad tracks between Lebanon Church Road and Noble Drive. Two-way traffic will be maintained with intermittent stoppages. The work is scheduled for completion in April 2015.

The right lane of outbound Route 65 will be closed at the Interstate 279 split on the North Side from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Thursday during bridge inspection.

One outbound lane will close on Route 28, at the bridge that carries a Freeport Road ramp over the highway in O'Hara, from 9 p.m. Thursday to 2 a.m Friday during inspections.

Also, inbound Route 28 will be closed overnight at the 31st Street Bridge starting at 8 p.m. Friday through Sunday. Traffic will be pushed across the bridge to Penn Avenue and on to the 16th Street Bridge to recross the river. The closure will end by 8 a.m. Saturday and Sunday and 5 a.m. Monday. Crews will install utility hole covers. Also, single-lane traffic will occur on inbound Route 28 from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday between the 31st Street Bridge and the East Ohio Street off-ramp.

Early reminder that North Shore lots will be closed to commuters on Monday and Thursday next week, when the Pirates play day games against the Chicago Cubs.

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Empty Netter Assists - 03-26-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .


-Dave Molinari's recap from last night's game. "We have nights where we're going real good, everybody's executing, we have great life, everyone's competing like crazy. Then we've had a few nights where we're just not very good. What's causing it? I don't know, but we've got to try to find a way to be better." - Matt Niskanen.

-The Associated Press' recap. "It gives confidence that if you can win in Pittsburgh you can win anywhere." - Coyotes captain/forward Shane Doan.


-Mike Lange's goal calls.

-The Penguins looking up from their bench:

-Olli Maatta doing his thing:

-A good look at the lid of Phoenix's Thomas Greiss:

-Even with Greiss looking elsewhere, Sidney Crosby couldn't score:

-Tanner Glass and Phoenix's Kyle Chipchura got busy in the corner:

-Submitted without further commentary:

-Dan Bylsma speaks:

-Sidney Crosby speaks:

-Taylor Pyatt speaks:

-“Every time you lose a player like him, it’s a big blow for the team. At the same time, we have dealt with lots of injuries during the year.” - Jussi Jokinen on Evgeni Malkin's foot injury.

-"Hockey is a business and I had to move on." - Coyotes defenseman Zbynek Michalek on his time with the Penguins.

-How does Jayson Megna's recall impact the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins?

-Penguins forward prospect Josh Archibald is set to make his professional debut tonight with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton.

-The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins recalled forward Carter Rowney from the Wheeling Nailers.


-Happy 50th birthday to former Penguins defenseman Ulf Samuelsson (right). Acquired from the Whalers along with Ron Francis and Grant Jennings at the 1991 trade deadline in a deal which sent John Cullen, Jeff Parker and Zarley Zalapski to Hartford, Samuelsson spent parts of five seasons in Pittsburgh. He finished 1990-91 by appearing in 14 games, scored five points and recorded 37 penalty minutes. In 20 postseason games that spring, he scored five points including the Cup-clinching goal in an 8-0 win at Minnesota in Game 6 of the Stanley Cup final, May 25, 1991. His first full season with the Penguins was 1991-92. In 62 games, he scored 15 points and accumulated 206 penalty minutes. He saw action in 21 postseason games that spring and scored seven points while helping the franchise win its second Stanley Cup title. During 1992-93, Samuelsson appeared in 77 games, scored 29 points and recorded a career-high 249 penalty minutes. In 12 postseason games that spring, he scored six points. In 1993-94, Samuelsson saw action in 80 games, netted 29 points and recorded 199 penalty minutes. He played in six playoff games that season and recorded one assist. During the lockout-shortened 1994-95 campaign, Samuelsson appeared in 44 games and netted 16 points. In seven postseason games that spring, he recorded two assists. During the 1995 offseason, Samuelsson and Luc Robitaille were traded to the Rangers in exchange for Petr Nedved and Sergei Zubov. One of the most physical and popular players in franchise history, Samuelsson appeared in 277 regular season games with the Penguins and scored 94 points, 91st-most in franchise history and recorded 804 penalty minutes, eighth-most. In 66 postseason games, he scored 16 points. Currently an assistant coach with the Rangers, his son, Philip Samuelsson, is a defensive prospect with the Penguins.

-After the Jump: Upper St. Clair's Vince Trocheck scores a pretty shootout goal.

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