Both teams were coming into this one after playing the night before. The Flyers were coming off a 3-2 win to the Sabres. The Devils were coming off of a 5-3 loss to the Maple Leafs. Neither Martin Broduer nor Ilya Bryzgalov started as they both got the night off. In net for the Devils was Johan Hedberg and Sergei Bobrovsky for the Flyers. There were a few changes in the Flyers lineup. James van Riemsdyk was scratched before the game and Holmgren reported he has an upper body injury. Danny Briere returned to the lineup and Harry Zolniercyzk was called up to play.
Like most other games this season, the Flyers were the first team on the board. Zac Rinaldo was the one to give his team the 1-0 lead as he scored his first NHL goal. Following that, Claude Giroux was set up with a beautiful pass from Jaromir Jagr to increase the lead to 2. This Jagr, Giroux, Hartnell line has been very consistent and chemistry has been proven between the three. The Flyers have had no problem at all scoring first in games, but there problem is keeping the lead. Yes, their goalie whether it is Bobrovsky or Bryzgalov, is expected to make saves that will win games. What you can’t expect them to do is keep you in games for 2 1/2 periods when your offense decides to take a break and your defense is far from perfect.
I felt that the Flyers pretty much just left BOB on his own for the remainder of the game. Zach Parise and Adam Henrique were both able to get pucks in the net tying this game up going into the third. We all had the privilege of viewing one of the most exciting moments in hockey: the penalty shot. When the ref pointed to center ice after Max Talbot’s breakaway was interrupted, we all knew what that meant. The only thing better than getting to see a penalty shot is when your player scores, and thats what we got to see. Talbot put the Flyers up 3-2 early in the third period. Still, the Flyers netminder what left out to dry and eventually, David Clarkson was able to tie the game up for the Devils.
The game was going to OT. Flyers fans were praying that the orange and black would end it before the 5 minutes due to their struggles last year in the shootout. That was not the case. At the end of OT, the game remained 3-3 and to the shootout we would go. Now the only thing I can’t stand more than when the right guys aren’t put out to shoot, is when Peter Laviolette chooses to shoot first. I hate it. Your the home team, you get to choose when you shoot and the team that shoots second always has the advantage in my opinion. Simmonds, Briere, and Giroux were sent out to shoot for the Flyers. I would’ve rather seen Jagr shoot instead of Simmonds, but I’m not the coach. Simmonds shot was pathetic, Briere scores (no surprise), and Giroux lost control which seems to happen to him frequently in shootouts. Long story short, the Devils won in the shootout.
There is no excuse for blowing leads as often as the Flyers do. Maybe they have to skate harder at practice to ensure that they’ll have the same amount of energy and intensity in the third as they did in the first. Thats what my coaches always make us do atleast. So Bobrovsky faced 39 shots and 3 got by him for a .923 save percentage. WE HAVE TO DO A BETTER JOB OF HELPING OUR GOALIE OUT. Were not going to win games by scoring two or three early goals in the first and then giving up the rest of the game. They almost blew the game Wednesday night in Buffalo after having a 3-0 lead. The same thing happened: they scored then gave up. Next game is Saturday vs Columbus at the Wells Fargo Center. I am pretty sure that Jeff Carter will not be playing due to that foot injury i believe. Expect to see Bryzgalov in net and I’m sure Laviolette will make these guys work in the practices prior to this game.
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