The Flyers have the worst start yet to their season going 1-6-0. Last night’s game against the Vancouver Canucks looked promising but the Flyers lost the lead in the third period, much like in the past they have had issues maintaining consistency through the third period.
Tye McGinn has made an impression, as he is one of the only Flyers successfully scoring, twice last night and once during Sunday’s game. Also, Steve Mason, a consistent MVP for the Flyers this season has been looking better and better in net. The good news is that he is improving, but the bad news is he is still getting little support from the soft defense the rest of the team.
At times the team has been playing well with quality puck handling, getting deep into their opponents zone and taking shots. But, they are not getting pucks in the net. A consistent struggle for the Flyers has been playing a consistent 60 minute game, and if they continue to not be able to compete for an entire 60 minutes they will keep losing.
It’s early in the season, even though things do not look too hot right now, the Flyers are a team filled with experience, depth and a lot of talented/quality hockey players. There cannot be certainty as to what the missing element truly is for this team but it is frustrating to see the Flyers have such a struggle.
McGinn, recently called up from the Flyers AHL Phantoms affiliate, has been a dominate goal scorer for the team. There is a short list of players who have scored goals this season for the Flyers and oddly absent are the names of: Captain Claude Giroux, Jake Voracek, Wayne Simmonds, Matt Read and Sean Coturier. With their top players not being able to make the puck in the net and Scott Hartnell, as well as Vinny Lecavalier out of the lineup for the next few weeks the Flyers are in a rough situation. Berube was correct when he said someone would step up and fill in the Hartnell/Lecavalier gap, McGinn has done a great job of that but who is going to fill the Giroux and company gap?
Last week Flyers head coach Craig Berube advised his team: “Relax the goals will come.” But, not for a lack of shots on goal or opportunities, the goals are not coming for the Flyers. Today during morning skate the coaches were replaying the Higgins goal over and over, practicing defensing. Regardless of what the coaching staff makes them practice, they need to be able to score goals and have confidence. This coaching staff needs to get their head out of the sand.
The Flyers will face the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday. Of course the Penguins are on a roll and looking to demolish the Flyers with a 6-1 game. No better time than now for everyone to step up, play Zac Rinaldo for more than 4 minutes, fore-check, stay out of the penalty box and have a stronger defense and offense.
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