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Plenty of blame to go around: Flyers implode in Montreal, lose 5-1

[Recap] - [Game Page] - [Montreal Reaction] - [Game Thread: 123]
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[Shift Charts] - [Head-to-Head TOI] - [Corsi and Fenwick] - [Zone Starts]

I don't usually write recaps before the game is over. Most writers, especially those on deadline, tend to write game stories while the game is still being played, and I always feel a little dishonest about this. It's one thing when you're writing in an AP style, where you basically recount the events of the game, and we certainly employ a style that takes a wider view of the game as a whole, but still. It just feels weird.

But tonight is one of those nights where the full picture of the game was already in bright, vibrant focus before the midway point of the third period. The Flyers defense was more porous than the face of an oily teenager, and Ilya Bryzgalov looked sloppier than .... I can't think of a good pun here. Whatever. You come up with one. /community engagement

The Flyers looked like utter crap tonight. Actually, that's not wholly true. They looked great through the first 19 minutes of the game, and then the bottom completely fell out of the bus. Montreal turned up the heat and the Flyers melted under it. It all started on defense, and we're gonna go out on a limb and say it's not exactly a coincidence that this was Chris Pronger's first game out of the lineup. 

Predictably, Andreas Lilja and Matt Walker were particularly brutal. The Habs consistently had chances all alone in front of the net, and Bryzgalov isn't going to stop many one-on-one looks from right in front of his crease. Nor should he be expected to, billion dollar contract or not. 

But that doesn't mean he shouldn't get some of the blame. It's not an indictment of the decision to sign him or anything like that, but Bryzgalov has been bad. There are no two ways about it. He has an .884 save percentage in seven games. He's been bad. That needs to change, and he can't completely blame his defense for the struggles.

There's plenty of blame to go around. Let's not lump it on one person. But uh, let's lump it on a lot of people. Even though the entire Internet is already set on doing that. After the jump, questions with answers and the comment of the night.

Questions with Answers

  1. The Habs are baaaaaaaaaaad. Worst start in 70 years. Why do they suck so much, and do they suck tonight? Oh God.
  2. Ilya Bryzgalov is back tonight. How's he do, and can he outduel the only player in Montreal that's apparently any good in Carey Price? You're funny.
  3. Game nine, could be Sean Couturier's last. I mean, probably not but whatever. How's he look, and who are his linemates? He was on the fourth line again. Such an unbelievable waste.
  4. The Habs always bring out the worst in the Flyers penalty wise. Can they stay the hell out of the box tonight? Nope. 
  5. Scoring from somebody other than the top line? Like.... maybe? Shut up. 

Comment of the Night

They need to put Lindros in. I still can't believe they fit him in the salary cap.

>> darkside3744