PHILADELPHIA, PA - JANUARY 22: Tim Thomas #30 of the Boston Bruins makes the game winning shootout save against Wayne Simmonds #17 of the Philadelphia Flyers on January 22, 2012 at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Bruins defeated the Flyers 6-5 after a shootout. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
PHILADELPHIA -- 65 minutes of ridiculously entertaining hockey on Sunday afternoon wasn't enough to settle things, and as a result, the Flyers and Boston Bruins left the Wells Fargo Center with one point a piece, a 5-5 tie.
Oh, wait. What? Gary Bettman said no ties? Well, that's some BS.
Today was one of those games that absolutely should have been a tie. The Bruins and Flyers played an awesome game -- back and forth, physical, good special teams, emotional. It might have been the most entertaining game of the year so far in the NHL. And yet, it ended with a silly penalty shot contest, and the Bruins grabbed an extra point in the standings as a result.
Maybe shootouts suck because the Flyers have always been awful at them. Since the lockout in 2004-05 when the shootout was implemented, the Flyers have fewer shootout wins than any other team in the league. That's enough to make us hate them. If we were the Penguins or the Devils or the Rangers or any team with a strong shootout record, maybe our tune would be different.
Too often, though, it just seems like the shootout overshadows an awesome hockey game, like it did today. The Flyers battled back from a 3-1 deficit with help from a Scott Hartnell natural hat trick, Brayden Schenn grew into a man right before our eyes, they were able to hang in despite having eight rookies in the lineup, and for the first time since at least last regular season, they seemed like they had an answer for Boston's bruising physical style of play.
But despite the three-out-of-four points on the weekend and all the positives that can be taken away from Sunday's game, it's hard to get the taste of the shootout out of the mouth. And that sucks.
Questions with Answers
- How do the injuries affect the lines and the Flyers' strategy? Lines were sort of all over the place. Schenn got bumped up top and was great, but all four units seemed to work pretty well.
- The Flyers had success on the power play Saturday. More of that? Power play was very good again, looked dangerous even when they didn't score.
- How do the callups perform today? Sestito had a very solid game. Didn't notice Holmstrom much.
- Obligatory question about goaltender performance here. Bryz wasn't good, but the defense in front of him sucked too.
Comment of the Day
Who would have thought I'd counting more Hartnell goals than Hartnelldowns