PHILADELPHIA -- The Flyers did their best to let the New York Islanders (or, perhaps, the Bridgeport Sound Tigers) crawl back into Wednesday night's preseason contest at the Wells Fargo Center with a series of third period penalties, but not even the best AHLers (plus Matt Moulson) Garth Snow has to offer could beat Sergei Bobrovsky on this night.
Oh, here we go again, you're probably saying. Leading with Bob? Well, in so many ways, he was the story again, especially as the Flyers clung to their three goal lead. Without some big third period saves, the Islanders would've tied this one. Plain and simple.
It probably should've been a blowout, though. The Flyers controlled play for most of the game, especially in the first period where they put home all of their three goals. While it's nice to think about how the Flyers controlled most of the game, they did it against a rag tag squad of misfits. So we'll just go to the bullets, then.
- It did seem a little odd that Peter Laviolette decided to play 15 veterans (16 if you're counting Andreas Nodl) against a team that well, you might not even be able to call a team. The Islanders brought half of an already weak, depleted team to Philadelphia for this game, so perhaps it was a bit unfair for the Flyers to play basically everybody.
Then again, the season is creeping ever closer, so perhaps it's best that Laviolette get all of his guys in there so they can get the feel for working with each other.
- Nodl was paired up on a line with Claude Giroux and Nikolai Zherdev. He looked good with them, but where he impressed most was on the penalty kill. The Flyers are giving him a chance and, if you ask me, he's taking advantage of it. He had a fantastic game and really showed his two way ability, although the Flyers want more out of him offensively.
- Braydon Coburn absolutely destroyed Jesse Joensuu in a third period fight. A year ago, he got crushed by an old man, Owen Nolan. This year, he's making AHL kids bleed. All part of an atypically physical preseason from Coburn so far.
After the jump, more bullets, some postgame video and the comment of the night.
- Blair Betts and Ville Leino played for the first time this preseason, thankfully. Leino even made a dazzling move on what may have been his first shift (early, either way), but he wound up falling before getting a shot off. Regardless, it looked good. His pass to Scott Hartnell later in the period looked even better, and it led to a goal.
- Every time we see Bobrovsky play he seems to get better and better. I still find it incredible that he's never been formally taught in the school of goaltending by a real goalie coach before Jeff Reese this year. Sure, there are things he has to work on and there are holes in his game, but he's so sound in the fundamentals.
- Perhaps a bad omen, though... he's a Euro goalie who plays for the Flyers who has a penchant for blocking pucks with his mask (a new one, by the way). At least two saves were made by his noggin tonight. Remember the last European goalie who made face saves... ?
- Dwayne Roloson was brilliant for the Isles. Absolutely fantastic game.
- Erik Gustafsson took an Isle down in the second period whilst in breakaway mode. It probably should've been a penalty shot, but it wasn't. Hard to blame Gustafson too much on the play because at least he tried, but it was a pretty bad take down. Overall, though, it's not enough to take away from a solid game and a solid preseason thus far. Paired with Kimmo Timonen, he led the defense in shifts tonight.
- At the end of the second period, only three Isles had avoided the 'minus' column. Two were former Flyers/Phantoms: Jon Sim and Krys Kolanos. Kolanos scored for the Isles in the third.
Ville Leino speaks with the media
speaks with the media
Peter Laviolette's post-game presser