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The Morning After: Flyers fall to Pens in SO, 5-4

Another game in Pittsburgh. Another loss. That's 0-2 at The Dump Igloo this season and that's eight straight losses there dating back to last season. In fact, the Flyers haven't won in Pitt in over a year now, the last win coming November 7, 2007. Pathetic.

Image Credit: AP
But it's even worse the way they lost it last night. Sure, they got a point out of the game after they trailed 3-0. Commend John Stevens for calling a timeout in the second period and knocking some skulls around, prompting a mad rally that ended with the Flyers holding a 4-3 lead late in the third. And you can't really blame Mike Richards for a failed outlet pass that took an unlucky bounce of the side of the net, right onto the stick of a Penguin, generating the scoring chance that resulted in the final goal.

But this one stings. After that rally, which included two Simon Gagne shorthanded goals, and a momentum-shifting late second-period tally by Joffrey Lupul, the Flyers needed to come out in the third and get the put-away goal. As The Pens Blog put it:

The tables were turned on the Penguins.
Mellon Arena Syndrome was in full effect.

I'm not really sure what "Mellon Arena Syndrome" is, but if I had to guess it's probably when the crowd reverts to the Before Crosby days when they didn't really know what hockey was. Anyway, Marc-Andre Fleury was out. Dany Sabourin was in. The Flyers definitely had the Penguins on the ropes, and they just needed to give that one final blow...

It never came. They sailed through the third period without putting much pressure at all on the Pens, and with 2:33 left and the puck deep in the Philadelphia zone...

[caption id="" align="aligncenter" width="409" caption="Image Credit: AP"][/caption]

I think we all kind of saw it coming. This Flyers team hasn't been able to play a complete 60 minutes of hockey all season... hell, dating back to last season I'd say. And you know what? That falls on the coach. Yeah, I gave Stevens his credit for calling the timeout and getting everybody's heads out of their asses, but they should've never been down 3-0 in the first place. And when they finally got the lead, they sat back like the Penguins couldn't score. It's become typical of the John Stevens-era, and I think we're all sick of it.

But okay, so at this point the game is only tied... overtime was just boring, really. The shootout only had one goal, but as someone who hates everything about the shootout, this one was pretty damn exciting. Sabourin absolutely robbed Mike Richards. Take a look:


And then Marty gets beat by... Alex.. Goligoski...

Yeah. That's kinda the way the night went. Flyers lose.

Some other notes:

  • Ossi Vaananen left the game after re-injuring his finger. So now if Kukkonen is claimed today, we're royally screwed with only five defensemen. Exactly what I worried about yesterday. Excellent.

  • Paul Holmgren was in Minnesota last night at the Wild/Coyotes game, although it's probably nothing to take into consideration. It'd be nice having Kim Johnsson back though...

  • I love Luca Sbisa. So glad he's still on this team.